When Little Brother released their sophomore album "The Minstrel Show" in 2005, they signed to a major label and was billed as "The group that was going to save hip hop". It seemed as if their troubles were ending, when they were just beginning. First, the album was a lightning rod for controversy at the magazine The Source- where an album review resulted in an editor's resignation. Then, their video for the song "Lovin' It" was allegedly banned from BET for being "Too intelligent for the viewing audience". Lastly, there was turmoil within the group due to the outside attention that was placed on 9th Wonder as a producer which resulted in his departure. As if that wasn't enough, they recorded the follow-up "Getback" only to be told by Atlantic Records that it wasn't commercial enough. So, they devoted their time to their side projects- notably Big Pooh's solo career and Phonte's other group The Foreign Exchange. Although they announced their break-up in early 2010, the final song from "Getback" called "When Everything Is New" all but hinted at the group's demise.
So here is the new album "Leftback", which was originally conceived as an album consisting of remixes and B-sides for material that didn't make "Getback". They scrapped that idea entirely and decided to record a new album as their swan song. Half of the album was produced by Khrysis who also did "Watch Me" from "The Minstrel Show" and "After The Party" from "Getback". The overall mood of this album is obviously "Let's call it a day", as evidenced by the songs "Curtain Call" and "Tigallo For Dolo" in which Phonte clearly states where his priorities lie- he would rather be a singer than a rapper. On "What We Are" Big Pooh plays the role of a commitment phobe involved with a woman that wanted a relationship. Kon Artis of D-12 (under his real name Denaun Porter) produces the song "Second Chances" which finds the duo in a "break up to make up" situation. The three songs that weigh this album down are the remixes to the songs "After The Party" and "Two Step Blues" which were kind of unneccesary and "Before The Night Is Over" sounds bland after a few spins. Overall, it's a good album from Little Brother, but being that it's their last album it seems as if their hearts weren't in it.