The song is built around a simple, funky drum and bass groove that DJ Shadow fleshes out with guitar loops, big, brassy horns and the occasional flourish of something “too future.”
Though the beat is a far cry from the blistering, relentless production Run the Jewels usually rhyme over, El-P and Killer Mike tackle “Nobody Speak” with the same brutal, bruising mentality (El spits viciously at one point, “Flame your crew quicker than Trump fucks his youngest”).
“Occasionally, I make a beat that demands a specific vocal treatment and attitude,” DJ Shadow said of the song. “In the case of ‘Nobody Speak,’ I wasn’t going to settle for anyone other than Run the Jewels; in my mind, it was them or no one. Fortunately, they agreed, and they took the track to a place I could never get to on my own.”
“Nobody Speak” will appear on DJ Shadow’s upcoming album, The Mountain Will Fall, set to arrive June 24th on Mass Appeal. The song will also be a part of Run the Jewels’ Record Store Day release, VRTJ, a virtual reality cardboard viewer that will come with a download code for the song.
The Mountain Will Fall marks DJ Shadow’s first album since 2011’s The Less You Know, the Better. He has a handful of international tour dates lined up this summer and will also host three episodes of a new Beats 1 radio show, “DJ Shadow Presents: #radioface,” starting in June.