Vampire Weekend’s Ezra Koenig explains what it’s like to work with Kanye West

Singer says how it influenced work on band's new album

Vampire Weekend frontman Ezra Koenig has spoken about working with Kanye West and explained how the process has influenced his band’s new album.

Koenig’s band released their third album ‘Modern Vampires Of The City’ in 2013, with the singer recently stating that they’re “80% done” on its follow-up, which currently has the working title of ‘Mitsubishi Macchiato’.

Now, speaking to Rolling Stone, Koenig discussed what it’s like working with someone like Kanye and how that changed the way he works.


Vampire Weekend’s Ezra Koenig

“I had this experience where I was in the studio with Kanye in Mexico,” he said. “It was so different than anything I’d done: One day [Dirty Projectors frontman] Dave Longstreth is there; the next day Big Sean shows up. Sometimes it wasn’t people working, just talking about music.”

“I was, like, ‘I like this atmosphere. I need to loosen up.’ So I’ve been working with this 68-year-old guitarist, Greg Leisz, and this 18-year-old guitarist, Steve Lacy. A bunch of other people have been coming in and out. Now we’re moving into the final stage where it’s about, ‘How do you take all that energy and reduce it to the sound of the album?’ It’s tricky.”

Ezra went on to say of the new Vampire Weekend album: “After this period of smoking weed and making cartoons, I came back fresh. Back to chapter four, feeling renewed. I don’t want to say too much about the sound, but this is the first album I’ll be making in my thirties, and when a band gets to their fourth album, it’s a lot like hitting your thirties and figuring out how to dress: You might love seeing the newest sweatshirt collabs from some brands you like, but at some point you pull it over your head and look in the mirror, like, ‘Hm. This doesn’t make sense anymore’.”