“It’s fuckin' over” were just a few of the words Phonte Coleman had to offer last week on his Gordon Gartrell Radio podcast, using a 12-minute segment of the show to thank fans for supporting Little Brother over the years and explain to listeners that, yes, the LB saga has reached its end: The duo’s next album, LeftBack, will be their last.
With three LPs and three mixtapes under their belt, Phonte and Rapper Big Pooh’s story comprises all the parts fitting for a music group’s soap opera: a critically acclaimed freshman album, a soon-departed member (Grammy winner 9th Wonder), a fight with the commercial machine (remember the “too intelligent for BET” debacle?), and after several years of touring and a few albums of super material, the end. As Coleman says, there’s “nothing left to say, creatively." As far as Rapper Big Pooh is concerned, we’ll just assume he’ll save whatever he might have had to say for his solo career, which looks to be promising.
According to a press release, LB’s fourth and last LP, LeftBack, to be released on April 20th, will be the “duo's first album with a true multi-media experience." If you’re like me, you were probably hoping for something including but not limited to 3-D glasses, tickets to a LB laser light show and song lyrics written in Braille. Instead, the LP is accompanied by four brand-new music videos, all directed by Matt Koza, who also directed videos for Coleman’s Grammy-nominated outfit, The Foreign Exchange.
LeftBack will include producers Khrysis, Symbolyc One, Denaun Porter and ZO!, along with newcomers J. Bizness and King Karnov. Expect guests Torae, Truck North, Jozeeemo, Yahzarah, Darien Brockington and fellow Justus Leauguers Median and Chaundon. And if that isn't enough, a bonus DVD will feature tour footage and video of charming LB moments recorded over the length of the group's short but impactful career.
No word yet on what the first single will be, whether the two will be touring for this album or if, after all these years, BET will give Little Brother its retribution and play one (or all four) LeftBack videos.