Dabrye, who hails from Detroit, also records minimal techno under the alias James T. Cotton. His roots in the e-music scene might lead one to assume that his new LP, Two/Three (Ghostly International), would be a mechanical, futuristic affair, a la Cannibal Ox's The Cold Vein. This is half-right, as his soundbank of samples does lean heavily on crackling beats and shimmering, robotic, synthesized tones instead of smooth soul loops and crate-dug jazz breaks. But Dabrye's touch is light and his understanding of hip hop sincere, resulting in one of the most off-kilter and enjoyable rap releases of 2006. And his efforts are aided in no small amount by the slew of underground guest MCs he's recruited. The ultra-prolific MF Doom spits his usual stream of consciousness on the lead single, "Air," which is just the tip of the iceberg: Vast Aire, Wildchild, Beans, AG, and the late, great Jay Dee also make noteworthy appearances. And Dabrye's instrumentals, usually the hardest sell of any hip-hop record, are just as engaging. Score another one for Detroit, as nerd rap finds it's got heart after all.