In retrospect, the 10-song Kanye West/Weezer mashup album called Yeezer seems inevitable. After all, Kanye West is a hip-hop nerd with a reputation as a brooding, difficult genius, while Weezer frontman Rivers Cuomo is a power-rock nerd with a reputation as a brooding, difficult genius. Neither West nor Cuomo do well with constructive criticism. Both acts were blasted in dorm rooms everywhere in the 2000s. Plus, Kanye had that album called Yeezus, which sort of sounds like Weezer. That, in all likelihood, was the clincher. It took an Ohio State sophomore named Alex Hodowanec to connect these particular dots. As told to Radio.com’s Jay Tilles, Hodowanec, whose nom de remix is Chuckie Nugget, was already a dedicated Weezer fan when a friend jokingly suggested the name Yeezer to him. And thus, a mashup album was born. Hodowanec started with just one track, a canny mixture of Weezer’s “Beverly Hills” and Kanye’s “Through The Wire” called “Through The Hills,” and the rest of the album blossomed from that. Quickly taken down by Bandcamp, the album has found a new home on Audiomack, where Hodowanec insists it remain a free download. Using a West-appropriate Christ metaphor, the student humbly explains, “All music [on Yeezer] belongs to… Kanye West and Weezer. I am just the disciple.”

Though it may seem to be a one-joke album built around a rather shaky pun, the album itself is quite a tasty, satisfying listen. The proudly geeky Yeezer wisely draws from various albums in the respective discographies of Kanye West and Weezer. “The only requirement,” says Hodowanec, “was that they sound good together.” And they do, including a “Buddy Holly”/“The New Workout Plan” hybrid that will undoubtedly end up on many people’s actual workout playlists. As a thorough, thoughtful review of Yeezer by The Daily Dot’s Aaron Sankin points out, one of the hidden benefits of the mashup album is that it rescues and redeems some forgotten or overlooked tracks from Weezer’s spotty, latter-day albums. Raditude from 2009 got middling-to-lousy reviews pretty much everywhere, for instance, but Hodowanec takes that album’s “The Girl Got Hot” and combines it with “Black Skinhead” from Yeezus to create “The Girl Got BLKKK,” which Sankin deems “instantly iconic.” It’s a classic win-win.

[via The Daily Dot]