808's & Heartbreak Album Cover

Track Listing

  1. Say You Will
  2. Welcome To Heartbreak (feat. Kid Cudi)
  3. Heartless
  4. Amazing (feat. Young Jeezy)
  5. Love Lockdown
  6. Paranoid (feat. Mr. Hudson)
  7. RoboCop
  8. Street Lights
  9. Bad News
  10. See You In My Nightmare (feat. Lil Wayne)
  11. Coldest Winter

Review

This is Kanye West’s 4th album & it was released on November 24,2008. The inspiration behind this are the events that occurred after the release of his 3rd album Graduation. Those being the death of his mother, the end of his relationship with his fiance & his struggles with stardom.

The Roland TR-808 drum machine & Auto-Tune feature heavily in each production. The 808 is cool, unfortunately Auto-Tune has been over used so much lately it isn’t even funny. Even though I don’t particularly agree with the use of that vocal tool, I think that it was actually used effectively on this album.

As for the songs themselves, there’s a lot of solid material to be heard. The best being those that have the most minimal of production. There’s the tribal-like Love Lockdown that basically has the piano & drums driving the track over a simple, deep bass line.

Heartless is one of the many tracks the utilizes the previously mentioned Auto-Tune. Mostly during the chorus sections when he’s singing his own hooks. Amazing is also a piano & drum driven track that features some choir-like background vocals. I felt the verse by Young Jeezy was totally unnecessary, but that’s just me. I think in Bad News Kanye is singing all the way through. I like the strings on that track. Welcome To Heartbreak hit a little too close to home for me. Especially the first few lines in the 1st verse. Ouch. Still, a nice track.

Unfortunately there is a dud present on this album. I pretty much loathe anything that Lil Wayne does & that includes any collaborations with artists I like. If he wasn’t on Tell Everybody You Know maybe I would be able to listen to it more than once. Sorry, I don’t get why everyone thinks he’s the shit. The only redeeming thing about the song is that the instrumental is nice.

With the exception of one track I think this album is great. It’s definitely an acquired taste if you happen to really love Kanye’s more commercial work. But if you’re willing to get past that it’s worth the the listen.