Ezra Koenig Played An Unreleased Song That ‘Almost Made’ Vampire Weekend’s ‘Only God Was Above Us’ Album

In April, Vampire Weekend released their first album in five years, Only God Was Above Us, which Uproxx’s Steven Hyden named among his “Favorite Albums Of 2024 So Far.” The album could have been even better, according to lead vocalist Ezra Koenig.

Koenig recently appeared on Tetragrammaton With Rick Rubin and stumbled into sharing that he’s “actually been working on one song that was almost on the album,” and it’s entitled “New York Hospital.”

“I think it was partially just because I realized — somehow, very deep into our friendship, it came about that, oh, me and [Chris] Baio were born at the same hospital,” Koenig explained, adding that, of course, the Upper East Side hospital was called New York Hospital at the time but has since rebranded.

Koenig continued, “I was like, ‘Oh, that’s kind of cool that we were born in the same place, the same year,’ and then, naturally, at this phase of life, you think — when it’s no longer all about you the way it is when you’re young, and you think about, ‘Oh, I’m in between.’ I think about the older generations and where they were born and how they grew up, and I think about the younger generations.”

Koenig played Rubin the song on the acoustic guitar with the disclaimer, “It’ll sound kind of folky.”

Listen to Koenig play “New York Hospital” above, beginning at the 59:50 mark.