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The Wheeler Boys: My Brother's Keeper

Southern Ground/Dungeon Family

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With My Brother's Keeper, Wes Green's beats and the Wheeler Boys' molasses stride owe much to Dungeon Family luminaries Witchdoctor and Cool Breeze. The album resonates with Sean and Garrett Wheeler's sense of street-level blues poured into hip-hop songs. The dialectic mashup gives the Atlanta release strength. "Go" is the obvious single with its infectious bounce, and "Kush" (feat. Southern Folk) booms to the tune of weed pride and pep-rally beats. News reports about ecological disasters, health insurance and terrorism in "Y'all Know About Us" and Sonia Leigh's urbane country swoon in "So Much Trouble" make political statements without sounding preachy. The album could lose a few of those nonessential third-quarter tracks, but it's forgivable. They're rapping about what keeps them up at night, and there's a lot of ground to cover. (4 out of 5 stars)

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