"Oh, that's how y'all flipping it? Because I did that in 1994." Timbaland's credentials are unquestioned, but that doesn't mean he's unquestioning. This morning (Jan. 7), the legendary producer stopped by Power 105.1's The Breakfast Club and offered some quick darts—the Aaliyah movie on Lifetime was awful; technology is disconnecting us all; Petey Pablo forgot he had a gun in his backpack. But from the jump, Timbaland was taking aim at the modern methods of and mechanisms for consuming music.

Complaining that records are judged both too superficially and not harshly enough, the legendary producer argued for more vigorous criticism. "When Atari came out, you had to live with Atari," he said. "When Pac-Man came out, that was the only game that was good, and you had to live with that for like two years until the next one comes out." He cited our cultural ADD as a handicap in accurately weeding out the one-hit wonders from the true greats. (This is also reflected, Timbo says, in the differences between analog and digital production techniques.)

And speaking of greats, Timbaland spoke about length with his three chief collaborators: Missy Elliott, Jay Z, and Justin Timberlake, all of whom he likens to siblings. Timberlake, in particular, allowed the hip-hop stalwart to penetrate the pop world the way he had always planned to.

Timbo was also contemplative about his place in the industry. His response to those rappers who expect him to carry the weight of their promotion? "I'm not the guy anymore." Other major projects on the table were his role in Lee Daniels' new Terrence Howard-starring series Empire and his work with his newest artist, Tink.