Imagine going back 20 years and telling your younger self that rap kingpin Nas and sample-collage producer DJ Shadow were going to be collaborating for a TV shwo.
As further proof that anything can happen in 2017, they’ve joined forces for “Systematic” from the forthcoming soundtrack to HBO’s Silicon Valley.
The lyrics are classic Nas – politically potent, but classically cool. This time the street poet covers the gentrification and subtle racial micro-aggressions from out his Queens window. The Shadow beat matches his West Coast future funk with East Coast boom bap sensibilities.
Nas does sound downright inspired, as he has on pretty much all of his recent output. While we haven’t received a new full Nas project since 2012’s Life is Good, Nas seems to be done reveling in Illmatic hitting the two-decade mark and has killed everything from the unexpected DJ Khaled track “Nas Album Done” to his Netflix credit music “Angeldust.”
“Systematic” can be heard in this Sunday’s Silicon Valley season four premiere. The Silicon Valley soundtrack drops June 16.