Surrounded by Thieves was well received by critics. Allmusic's Brian O'Neill awarded the album 4.5 out of 5 stars, calling it "relentless" and suggesting that every song was "an epic that rolls like sinister thunder across the landscape." O'Neill noted that there was "not much variation" on the album but added that variety isn't necessary "when you get locked into a groove this good." Isaiah Violante, writing for Pitchfork, gave a similarly positive review of 8.8 out of 10. Violante praised the album's "nihilistic theme and all-encompassing walls of drone." He went on to praise the band for being able to "only operate according to its own whims" while also making "organic and monstrous music."