Phonte Coleman has never experienced tremendous commercial success, but the North Carolina rapper became a favorite among alternative hip-hop fans as the smooth voice of North Carolina trio Little Brother. With the talented collective’s future in flux, Phonte revived The Foreign Exchange, his project along aside Dutch producer Nicolay. Their 2004 debut release, “Connected,” was welcomed with open arms by the underground hip-hop community. Four years flew by before a sophomore effort, but the transatlantic duo definitely didn’t disappoint with “Leave It All Behind,” featuring Grammy-nominated track “Daykeeper” and hopes are high for a third album tentatively scheduled for an October 2010 release. Nicolay’s mellow beats with hints of classic soul and R&B, and Phonte’s genuine rhymes reflecting the struggles of a modern emcee certainly won’t throw the building into a frenzy, but backpackers will certainly have their day. (Darrel Sangster)
April 15 at Double Door, 1572 N. Milwaukee, (773)489-3160, 9pm. $22-$25.