Since the 2010 dissolution of the veteran N.C. crew, Phonte's been getting into the post-Little Brother groove via a downright epic streak of guest 16s, as well as collaborative work with Dutch beatsmith Nicolay as The Foreign Exchange. Today, the training wheels come off with the release of Not Here Anymore, the artist's first Booth feature as a headliner, and the lead single off his debut studio album. Of course, he still comes flanked by a few good friends; 9th Wonder mans the boards on this low-key banger, chopping a sample from Rose Royce's Love Don't Live Here Anymore as Phonte takes a wistful look back: “Amazon flame, watch 9th reKindle it, 'cause iPad verses with the wisdom of my innocence lost / Two brothers two peas in a pod, two comeback seasons apart / Take it back to when I be in the park to rhyme till I couldn't see in the dark.” Slum Village vet eLZhi assists on the back, closing proceedings on an aggressive lyrical note: “Push whips like the ones from the clips in the Tron film / I blow your mental mass, where your mindstem?” Time to weigh in, readers: did Phonte kick his solo career off right with this smooth selection? If you're leaning towards the affirmative, be sure to mark your calendars for the Sept. 27, release of Charity Starts at Home.
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