Back when College Dropout was CHANGING MY LIFE and shit I never really ended up listening to this all that much because, I dunno, I guess I was just expecting more of the exact same material from 'Ye when really it was just a case of me being a stubborn dork. So I threw this on for the first time in ages last night and JESUS CHRIST the beats on this album are massive. Whatever the fuck happened to Kanye after this album dropped must've been some kind of earth-shattering trauma because I honestly can't believe that someone could go from being one of the best pop rap producers in the biz to complete mediocrity over the span of two years. Jon Brion's influence on this album is obvious as hell, but at the end of the day, it's obvious that Kanye is the dude taking this all home. Not as effortless as College Dropout but a damn worthy companion piece either way. One hell of a bumpy ride after this.