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Best album of 2005 (tie) | The rest of the Best of 2005
KANYE WEST, Late Registration, Roc-A-Fella
When you are a producer at the level of Kanye West, everyone wants to jump on a track. And when you have a debut album like The College Dropout, everyone wants to be on the second coming. Kanye happily obliges on Late Registration. Nas, Game, Paul Wall, Cam'ron, Consequence and even Adam Levine of Maroon 5 make contributions -- and Jay-Z arrives on cue to take over the remix of "Diamonds from Sierra Leone." But it says a lot that on one of those cameos -- Common on "My Way Home" -- West lets the guest carry the whole track solo. It's too bad Kanye doesn't handle more tracks on his own, or limits his visitors to just the hook, like on "Roses," "Bring Me Down" featuring Brandy and the inescapable "Gold Digger" featuring Jamie Foxx. Like Dropout, Late Registration is a solid wire-to-wire listen. But next time around, it'd be nice to have a little more Kanye West on a Kanye West album. Nonetheless, the classic status of this album can't be denied.
Click here to find out how to buy this album.

-- Mason Storm

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