VIBE Exclusive: Daft Punk Speaks On Producing Kanye West’s ‘Black Skinhead’ For ‘Yeezus’ LP

Features

By: / July 10, 2013

No one expected Kanye West’s Yeezus to sound the way it did.

From the punk-rock screams to electronic aesthetics, ‘Ye threw listeners a curveball with his sixth solo LP. Yet according to Daft Punk’s Thomas Bangalter, Mr. West consulted the legendary French producers when first embarking on Yeezus.

“We were the first people that Kanye came to,” says Bangalter. “He really responded positively to those ideas we were throwing out to him. And then he ran with it and built the record, working with a lot of other producers and based on maybe some of the initial directions that we had laid out together.”

Daft Punk, who made its big comeback in May with the chart-topping album Random Access Memories, co-produced the opening three songs on Yeezus: “On Sight,” “I Am A God” and “Black Skinhead.” The latter track laid the foundation for the rest.

“The first track we did was ‘Black Skinhead,’” says DP. “The drums we had recorded earlier during the recording of our album, so we had those. It was a great twist of pushing the envelope.”

The video for “Black Skinheads, which features Kanye’s animated abs, was prematurely leaked on Monday (June 8). Kanye addressed the unofficial cut on Twitter a day later, insisting that the approved version is a week away from release.

“Me and Nick Knight have been working on this video for 5 months and for creatives it’s heartbreaking when something like this happens… Allow me and Nick to give the world what we’ve been losing sleep over,” He tweeted, adding, in Kanyeian fashion, “To who ever [sic] leaked the video…FUK YOU! [sic]” –John Kennedy, with reporting by Sarah Polonsky