The auto tune is what every one jumps to first.
808s is an album that I connect with. It isn't about being in the VIP or driving a nice car with big rims and all of that other glam rap club bullshit. This was an album that came more from the heart than I feel a lot of his other material has. It was from an artist that was humbled by something that we have all been humbled by- love. It was an album that brought Kanye back down to where the rest of us sit, at least in his mind, and was a great look into someone who doesn't offer himself up emotionally often. That period of time was brief obviously considering his fiasco at whatever awards show that was, but for that period he was like everyone else and wrote music and lyrics that I could relate to. Love, relationships, the end of those relationships; Kanye deals with it too, and I like knowing that. On a production level I enjoyed the album because of how incredibly different it was from his previous work. I like seeing artists take chances and succeed, and for a hip hop artist to put out a record with virtually no hip hop on it was a big risk that I felt paid off. The autotune doesn't bother me at all. Normally I don't like the sound, but on that album I felt like it painted Kanye as someone who had been left cold an emotionless and robotic, and they were emphasizing that with the vocal production. The songwriting is simple, there aren't huge hooks or beats or horn hits, etc. It's about the subtlety. This is why I like 808s. You don't have to agree with me and most of you wont. It's unfortunate that it doesn't do for you what it does for me.