The Neptunes may be celebrities in their own right, but for the most part hip-hop producers stay behind the scenes. LA's Madlib and Detroit's Jay Dee have done inspired freelance work for Diverse, Vast Aire, Dudley Perkins, Busta Rhymes, the Pharcyde, and De La Soul, among others; Madlib is a member of the Lootpack and Jay Dee is in Slum Village. But they're hardly household names. And their collaboration, under the name Jaylib, is just the two of them: on last year's Champion Sound (Stones Throw) there are a few guest rappers, but for the most part Madlib and Jay Dee rhyme over each other's beats. Both have done their share of MCing over the years, but neither is especially strong on the mike--Jay Dee is particularly lazy, often resorting to a tired misogynist stance. Ultimately, though, this helps create the album's whimsical, low-key charm: the rapping doesn't seem so much incompetent as it does casual, as if both producers were enjoying a break from the pressure to make a hit. Jay Dee's beats still have their trademark low-end bounce, but he messes with them recklessly: "The Heist," with its electronic squirming, could pass for an outtake by hip-hop weirdos Anti-Pop Consortium. Madlib favors looser, jazzier grooves (one of his many recent projects is a Blue Note remix album), but he weaves in Bollywood elements (shenai loops, melodramatic strings) on "Survival Test" and the title track. I'm not sure if these two have the charisma to make it work live, but I'd say it's worth the gamble. Peanut Butter Wolf and J. Rocc open. $20, all ages. Friday, May 28, 8:30 PM, Logan Square Auditorium, 2539 N. Kedzie; 773-276-3600 or 800-594-8499.

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