Hudson Mohawke says Rick Rubin inspired him to be more of a ‘conductor’ than ‘rap producer’

Scottish electronic musician discusses fears that Kanye West has pigeonholed him

Hudson Mohawke has discussed how working with Kanye West and Rick Rubin influenced his upcoming solo LP.

The Scottish electronic musician releases his second full-length ‘Lantern’ on June 15, the producer’s first solo release in six years following 2009’s ‘Butter’.

Since ‘Butter’, Mohawke worked with West and uber-producer Rubin on ‘Yeezus’, the sixth studio album from the Chicago rapper. Whilst the record did help propel Mohawke’s career, it has also pigeonholed him, the musician says.


Speaking in the new issue of NME, which is on newsstands now and available digitally, Mohawke said: “Nobody will write a fucking article about me that doesn’t mention Kanye. So I’m tagged as being a rap producer, and not as a musician/producer in my own right.”

Despite this, Mohawke states that the way Rubin works inspired him greatly. “A lot of [the inspiration for ‘Lantern’] was observing how Rick Rubin works. Just being in his company and observing the fact that he’s not playing with keyboards, he’s not touching a mouse, not looking at a screen. He’s just got his eyes closed, listening. So if I’ve almost finished something, and I wanna listen to it, the computer screen gets turned off. I’ll go and stand outside the room and listen to it as if it’s playing in a club.”

“[I’m] stepping out of being known as a beatmaker or rap producer, and into a traditional producer role. Although a lot of [the album] is done on the computer, I wanted to be more like a conductor.”

‘Lantern’ features collaborations with vocalists including Antony Hegarty, Miguel and Jhené Aiko. Hudson Mohawke recently shared a brand new song, ‘Very First Breath’, from it.

The ‘Lantern’ tracklisting is as follows:

‘Very First Breath’ (featuring Irfane)
‘Warriors’ (featuring Ruckazoid & Devaeux)
‘Scud Books’
‘Indian Steps’ (featuring Antony)
‘Lil Djembe’
‘Deepspace’ (featuring Miguel)
‘Resistance’ (featuring Jhené Aiko)
‘Portrait Of Luci’
‘Brand New World’