Kanye West’s 2013 studio album Yeezus debuted at No. 1 on the Billboard 200 and topped the charts in 30 other countries as well. It was praised by critics, some calling it some of Kanye’s greatest ever work. So it comes as a surprise that Yeezus never saw an official vinyl release
Kanye West vinyl before Yeezus
Prior to Yeezus, every Kanye album except Graduation had seen a vinyl release. The College Dropout, Late Registration, 808s & Heartbreak and My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy are all readily available on vinyl.
MBDTF came in a beautiful vinyl package with 3 vinyl records, 5 inserts and a poster.
Why Yeezus never saw a vinyl release
There were a few reasons why Yeezus never saw an official vinyl release.
Legendary producer Rick Rubin told Rolling Stone that he was called into the studio to work with West on Yeezus with just five weeks to go before the release date. When Rubin first heard the rough cut of Yeezus, it had a playing time of nearly three and a half hours. He said that West wanted the album to have 16 tracks. After a lot of work, the album was cut to 10 tracks. This late-stage rushing likely caused uncertainty at the record label as to whether the album would even be completed on time and no vinyl release was planned at the time of the album’s release.
- Kanye is done with physical music releases
West released his most recent album, The Life of Pablo, exclusively on
streaming services, including his own streaming service, Tidal.
On 7 March 2016, Kanye tweeted:
I was thinking about not making CDs ever again… Only streaming
— KANYE WEST (@kanyewest)
Although he only mentions CDs and not vinyl, it seems from his move towards streaming services that Kanye is abandoning physical music releases and sales entirely.
What could have been
In 2016, LuckyMe, a UK-based record label posted pictures of a design they made for a release of Yeezus on vinyl. According to the label, they were asked to investigate the possible release of a Yeezus vinyl record shortly after the album dropped. Unfortunately, the album never dropped. But the picture they posted was a reminder of how nice an official Yeezus vinyl pressing could have been.
Where to get Yeezus on vinyl
Despite there being no official pressing of Yeezus on vinyl, several unofficial, bootleg pressings exist. There are quite a few Yeezus vinyl listings on eBay. They are unofficial, and Kanye receives no money from their sales. However, if you want Kanye West’s entire discography on vinyl, they’re the only possible way to go.
Plus, they come on a whole bunch of pretty colors:
In fact, the Discogs page for Yeezus lists 9 different variants of the vinyl bootleg. On purple, red, orange and clear vinyl.
Apparently, they look and sound amazing, but nothing will ever be more pleasing than an official vinyl release of this amazing album.