Rick Rubin Speaks on Involvement With Kanye West’s “Yeezus”

Ever since Kanye West announces Yeezus‘ June 18 release date, there has been some doubt as to whether or not the album would actually come. The closer we got to a release date, the more it seemed suspicious, but ‘Ye came through in the final stretch and brought the legendary Rick Rubin on board to help with finishing the project.

Rubin recently had an email interview with the Wall Street Journal. Here’s what he had to say:

On when he got on board with Yeezus:

“Kanye came over to play me what I assumed was going to be the finished album at three weeks before the last possible delivery date. We ended up listening to three hours of partially finished pieces. The raw material was very strong but hadn’t yet come into focus. Many of the vocals hadn’t been recorded yet, and many of those still didn’t have lyrics. From what he played me, it sounded like several months more work had to be done.”

On what sound Kanye was going for:

“He wanted the music to take a stripped-down minimal direction.  He was always examining what we could take out instead of put in.”

On the roll-out strategy of Yeezus:

“Kanye chooses to let his art lead.  He didn’t want a premeditated commercial (single) for his album as he looks at it as a body of work.  I like it anytime an artist follows his own vision of a project and doesn’t use the cookie cutter template expected of most artists.  Kanye proceeds on the road less traveled and I applaud him for it.”