Nas & Fashawn Give Us Something To Believe In With Support From Aloe Blacc (Audio)

When he released his first album, Boy Meets World, Fashawn garnered comparisons to the introspective Nas. When Fash’ followed with Ode To Illmatic mixtape, the influence was overt. Last year, Nas signed Fashawn to his Mass Appeal imprint, making the proverbial cypher complete. Clearly, Nas something in Fashawn that he wanted to be part of, and maybe something in himself as celebrated through Young Santiago, the Fresno, California MC.

“Something To Believe In” finds Nas and Fashawn sharing the microphone at long last. DJ Khalil (of Self Scientific) has worked within Dr. Dre’s team for years, making hits in all corners of Hip-Hop. With a complex instrumental arrangement, married to Aloe Blacc’s soulful and spiritual singing, the stage is set.


Fashawn rises to the occasion with exactly the kind of verses that took him from an underground MC to a conversation piece. He reaches into his tool kit of historical references, personal urgency, and tangible ambition. Nas chimes with the momentum and thought seemingly given to some of his biggest guest shots (Main Source, Jay Z, etc.), offering the kind of insight he’s known for, the very level that undoubtedly inspired Fashawn.

With Common and John Legend’s “Glory” on the Academy Award stages this coming Sunday (February 22), songs about hope and pursuit of peace are big right now—perhaps with timely reason.

This is a big moment for Fashawn, for Nas, and for Mass Appeal.

Can The Ecology (February 24) grow beyond expectations?

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