In 2006 the only way to stand out from the trip-hop muck was through incendiary sonic exploration (Hell Hath No Fury), a Jigga-drawn hustler's ethic (T.I.'s King), or by being named Ghostface Killah. A buttery throwback like Jermiside & Brickbeats' debut was doomed to obscurity, but that only makes it a more satisfying find for the hungry rap fan. Jermiside hits the mic with easy Erick Sermon cadence and (say) liquid Sadat X flow, and Brickbeats paves his way with thick drum hits and smartly looped samples like a post-Neptunes Pete Rock, the whole record such a knowing '90s throwback that at times its glib anachronism seems to toe the corny line of Jurassic 5. Tracks like "Do Ya Thing" help elevate the cause, though, with Jermiside riding Brickbeats' drawn horn blasts and spitting Common-like with a lived-in authority, wordplay tumbling over punch lines and braggadocio: "A celebration of your elevation to a better station in life/Potential been revealed like a revelation through Christ/All from detonation of mics." Some could correctly quibble that the record loses steam as it hustles onward, but in a way that's perfectly OK. So dedicated are these two to reviving golden age hip-hop that the album's blander trends find enshrinement here alongside its most fresh ones.