XYLØ takes you on a tour of her pain with ‘The Ganglands of My Heart’.

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Pretty Records

The cover of XYLØ’s fourth extended play, ‘The Ganglands of My Heart’.

Mason Montano, Music Editor

American singer-songwriter Paige Duddy and her brother Chase come from a musical family, as their grandfather is American jazz musician Joe Porcaro, and their uncle is Steve Porcaro — one of the founding members of American rock band Toto.

In early 2015, the pair formed their own music project, XYLØ, and that February, they released their debut single, “America”, which went viral on YouTube and landed them a deal with Sony Music Entertainment.

Their debut EP of the same name arrived in February 2016 followed by two years of standalone singles until Paige announced in mid-2018 that Chase had decided to leave the group to focus on other projects, making her the sole member. 

She eventually cut ties with Sony later that year and signed to the independent label Pretty Records, with whom she released her debut solo EPs, pretty sad and yes & no, in March and May 2019, respectively. 

XYLØ’s next EP, The Ganglands of My Heart, arrived in early February as her third solo release and fourth project overall. It’s a dark, eerie R&B and indie pop-inspired record that features Duddy leading the listener through what she calls “the ganglands of [her] heart” on a tour of her pain, with each song presenting one of the sources of her frustration.

The opening track and second single, “American Sadness”, is about depression and feeling numb to the world; the non-single “Have You Ever Been In Love?” depicts falling for the wrong person and getting into an unhealthy relationship marked by toxic behavior; and the lead single, “Tongue In The Bag”, acts as the follow-up to the previous song and describes the feeling of knowing that you’re being cheated on.

The track that stands out the most, however, is “Goodfellas”. Inspired by the three years that she spent with Sony, Duddy vents her animosity toward label executives, likening them to mob bosses who profit from the suffering of the very artists that they represent, and the title is derived from the American crime film of the same name.

Throughout the song, she calls out the various atrocities that were committed against her by the label execs.; including stifling her creative freedom, financial abuse, and emotional trauma; but even though she went through the wringer, XYLØ rises above it all with beauty and elegance, transforming her anger into this fabulous EP, which is available now across all online and streaming platforms.

Stream The Ganglands of My Heart on Spotify: https://open.spotify.com/album/57cPgfpVD5mpfOMNeuBa73?si=4HFGKDKVT1y34HwgHMe4Jw 

Watch the lyric video for “Have You Ever In Love?”: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aAEOUXwDPeY 

XYLØ in the lyric video for “Have You Ever Been In Love?”.