Lyrically, the album is more introspective in comparison to its predecessors, as West dedicated much of Graduation towards analyzing himself and conveying his ambivalent outlook on his newfound fame.It continues the education theme of West's previous two studio albums, The College Dropout (2004) and Late Registration (2005).After spending the previous year touring the world with Irish rock band U2 on their Vertigo Tour, West became inspired by watching Bono open the stadium tours every night to incredible ovations and sought out to compose anthemic rap songs that could operate more efficiently in large stadiums and arenas.

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West made a conscious decision to abstain from the widespread recording practice of excessive rap albums saturated with skits and filler and instead comprised Graduation with significantly fewer tracks.

The stylistic divergence and desire for a leaner, more economical studio album was a creative reaction that was brought on by the alternative rock and indie-rock that West had been listening to around the time of the recording of his third studio album.

The coinciding release dates between Graduation and fellow rapper 50 Cent's Curtis generated much publicity over the idea of a sales competition, resulting in record-breaking sales performances by both albums.

The outcome of the competition marks a turning point in hip-hop culture, when the dominance of gangsta rap in mainstream hip-hop was brought to an end.

But he also acknowledged the fact that the differences did not right away and without a doubt make Graduation a good album.

However, he felt it was a representation of the music he was listening to at that time.

He would then make adjustments to the tracks based on feedback he received, repeating the process as many times as necessary.

In comparison to previous albums, Graduation features fewer guest appearances from other recording artists.

Kanye also listened to his most favorite alternative rock bands, including The Killers, Radiohead, Modest Mouse, and Keane, in order to gain new ideas on how to make his hip-hop production style more stadium-friendly.

Additionally, West would often test his new songs on his i Pod, in his office, in dance clubs and just about anywhere people might listen to his music.

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