Rapper Big Pooh Sleepers

With 9th Wonder's emerging status as a go-to beat maker and MC Phonte gathering critical acclaim with Foreign Exchange, the other third of North Carolina's Little Brother (Rapper Big Pooh) is probably feeling a little left out. On Sleepers, Pooh is sending a not so subtle message to those who have fronted on his skills. Pooh gets brash with non-believers on "I Don't Care” and on "Now,” with Murs, sports the rugged, unadorned flow that has sidled up nicely to Phonte's smooth, charismatic presence. The two reprise their Little Brother chemistry on "Every Block,” with 9th Wonder, who contributes six tracks, but this is Pooh's record. Even when he shares the mic with other Justus League affiliates, his lucid delivery and honest lyricism stand out. This approach makes the conceptually-driven treatises on loss and struggle tangible and poignant. Revealing his emotional range, conceptual flair and his laid-back, yet at times, rough character, Pooh serves notice that he, much like his Little Brother cohorts, is more than capable of carving out his own niche. (Hall Of Justus/6 Hole)