Both are hugely respected and undoubtedly quintessential hip hop artists. One, a pioneering producer. The other, a true street poet.
DJ Shadow and Nas, both signed to the latter's own imprint, Mass Appeal Records, have released the track 'Systematic' for the HBO comedy series Silicon Valley soundtrack. The current 3 seasons of Silicon Valley have featured a huge variety of music including Green Day, The Internet, The Mezcals, and Cypress Hill.
In a brief promo interview, Nas opens up about being inspired to work with Shadow after hearing 'Nobody Speak' the track featuring Run The Jewels from Shadow's powerful 2016 LP The Mountain Will Fall, an album which he is still currently touring globally.
Silicon Valley is a hit HBO original comedy based in San Francisco, revolving around tech start ups. The addition of this track no doubt solidifies Nas's association with HBO, having appeared on chat show 'Extra Time' with NBA superstar Kevin Durant and having also written for the HBO original series, 'The Get Down'.
In his celebrated and timeless fashion, Nas gets us to feel what he feels about the system over a suitably heavy and engaging DJ Shadow beat that no doubt includes some legendary samples. Check out the video below and understand some top socially relevant rhyming.
As we await news of a new Nas album, 'Systematic' will have hip hop heads salivating as it is the very first time these two 'seminal to the genre' artists have worked together. The track also serves as another wholesome introduction to decent hip hop from the series’ scorers, especially for all of those non-rap fan Silicon Valley watchers, who may have been pushed away from the genre by its commodified representation in the commercial cycle.
The Silicon Valley soundtrack is out on Mass Appeal Records June 16th, 2017 and check out DJ Shadows tour dates here with the UK shows set for August onwards.