Ziegler's nerdcore roots are relegated to remaining as just nerdy references, and they're probably outnumbered by his references to rap. He has a great rap voice, his deep, throaty vocals easily identifiable regardless of alias, while his delivery is slow and traditional, every word clearly heard, but it's still primarily battle rap, dominated by punchlines. For The Signal + The Noise, Ziegler teams with Variant, who provides him with a great selection of throwback boom bap. Variant even gets three instrumentals, and like many of the tracks, they contain cuts from Ziegler, also an accomplished DJ. Variant also offers very different alternate beats for six of the nine vocal tracks, but they don't include the album's two highlights: "Rick Moranis" is a warped funk track full of great references to the Canadian comedian and actor, and "Tropicana" has an uptempo funk groove that is perfect for the Mighty Rhino, who murders another excellent guest verse.
The Signal + The Noise should expand Kabuto/Ziegler's fanbase into underground hip-hop as it is obviously made to do, but either way, hopefully this alter ego lasts longer than the others that have come and gone. (Independent)