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Album Review: The Ganglands Of My Heart by XYLØ

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The Gandlands Of My Heart marks XYLØ's fourth EP on her musical journey. XYLØ, or Paige Duddy, continues to bring a 'dark' aesthetic to her music, while still being able to show a wide range of her vocal ability.

The first track off the album is American Sadness. The track starts off with a slow and melodic piano that repeats an ascending string of notes. During the chorus, you have your usual electronic drum beats. Through the lyrics, she talks about how she's not feeling happy in this relationship and that everything they used to do doesn't feel the same. XYLØ is wondering if she didn't do enough in the relationship, or if her heart isn't feeling the same.

Next, we have Have You Ever Been In Love? The track opens up again with an eerie piano with Paige singing over it. This track is similar instrumentally to the previous track, while being a little more simplistic. On this track, she talks about how this person isn't good for her, even though she is in love with that person. She needs to stop thinking about this person and get them out of her head.

After that, we have Tongue In The Bag, which was one of the singles for the EP. Instrumentally, we finally get a change of instruments and have more of an electronic feel. Instead of the piano, we have more of an electronic organ-like sound with various other electronic/pop sounds you would normally hear. Based on the lyrics, tongue in the bag means that this person is hiding or lying to Paige about something.

Goodfellas continues using an electronic-piano like sound, with repeating arpeggios. I also enjoy the wall of strings that you can occasionally hear in the background. The entire track just gives an ominous vibe, not knowing what to expect next. According to the first verse, it sounds like she signed to a record deal, but she isn't able to be as creative as she used to be with this new record label. She could also be talking about the dangers of signing to a record company since all they want is more money.

Masterpiece brings more of a lighter tone to the album. While having a beach like feeling, this track seems like it's all over the place with all the different instruments it brings to the table. It seems okay at first, but towards the end, it just feels like you are overwhelmed with all of these instruments coming up at once. Paige's voice fits perfectly over it, but the instruments take away from how great her voice sounds on the track.

The last track we have on the EP is Neon Crucifix. In the first half of the chorus, the instrumentation sounds like something you would hear from a Billie Eilish track. Then, when the second part of the chorus comes in, her voice sounds pretty similar to Selena Gomez. It just goes to show how versatile her vocals are. At the end of the track, she gives coordinates which are the coordinates to the Neon Crucifix in Los Angeles.

Unfortunately, this EP didn't land well with me. A lot of the tracks, especially towards the beginning didn't catch my attention and sounded the same. While I didn't enjoy this EP as much as her yes & no EP, I do wish that she would release a full-length album in the near future. With her vocals and catchy instrumentals, it's no doubt that she would do well with several pop music fans.
Overall Rating: 5/10
Favorite Tracks: Goodfellas, Neon Crucifix

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