Kanye West's "Yeezus" "Might" Have Sequel, Says Rick Rubin
"Initially, [Kanye] thought there were going to be 16 songs on the album," Rubin revealed to The Daily Beast. "But that first day, before he even asked me to work on it, I said, 'Maybe you should make it more concise. Maybe this is two albums. Maybe this is just the first half.' That was one of the first breakthroughs. Kanye was like, 'That’s what I came here today to hear! It could be 10 songs!'"
When asked if there is a possibility of a sequel to Yeezus, Rubin said, "Might be."
In the interview, Rubin also discussed his involvement with Yeezus.
"Kanye called me. I’d just finished working at the studio for about two months on another album, and I was getting ready to go away on vacation for a couple weeks. Then he called up and said, 'Can I just come play my album?' And I said, 'Sure.' I always like to hear what he’s working on. So he came over to my house in Malibu. We listened. I thought I was going to hear a finished album, but actually we listened to probably three and a half hours of works in progress...So I said, 'When are you thinking of finishing up?' And he said, 'It’s coming out in five weeks.' Like completely confident and fine," Rubin shared.
"I said, 'I have a record coming out in November that’s a lot further along than this.' He said, 'Really? What are you doing for the next five days?' I said I was going to go away," he added. "Then he said, 'Please help me. Would you be open to fixing it and shaping it and finishing it off?'"
Rubin also revealed that working on the album made him feel "sick" at times.
"To me it seemed impossible what he was asking. I remember I wasn’t feeling that well that day, and I was thinking, Is the music making me sick? I don’t feel good about this. We ended up working probably 15 days, 16 days, long hours, no days off, 15 hours a day. I was panicked the whole time."
Earlier this month, Rubin spoke with The Wall Street Journal about Kanye. In that interview, he shared his respect for West.
“He is a true artist who happens to make music under the wide umbrella of hip hop,” he said. “He is in no way beholden to Hip Hop’s typical messaging musical clichÃ©s. Hip Hop is a grander, more personal form because of his contributions, and hopefully his work will inspire others to push the boundaries of what’s possible in Hip Hop…He is pure in his art and in a form where so many choices artists make are often the result of business consideration. Kanye chooses to let his art lead.”
According to reports, Yeezus sold 328,000 first-week units. West was initially projected to sell more than this. According to a Billboard report, Yeezus was projected to sell 360,000-380,000 first-week units.
Rubin, who is recognized as an iconic producer for his work with Run DMC, Beastie Boys, LL Cool J and others, has also been featured in Jay-Z's ads for Magna Carta Holy Grail. Details of the producer's full involvement with the album are not yet known but it wouldn't be the first time Rubin and Jay collaborated. The two paired up for 2003's "99 Problems" on Jigga's The Black Album.