Alexander 23 crafts intricate love stories in ‘Oh No, Not Again!’

Photo of Alexander 23 Album
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Grade: 3.5/5.0

Just two years ago, Alexander Glantz, better known as Alexander 23, quietly wandered onto the musical stage. In 2019, he released his debut EP I’m Sorry I Love You, which gained attention rapidly for standouts “Dirty AF1s” and “Mars.” From there, he built an ever-expanding fan base, a promising indication of his rise as a commanding pop artist. And he delivers. Glantz speaks his honest truth about love’s unsteady waters in newest Feb. 19 EP release Oh No, Not Again!, giving listeners a deeper insight into his imaginative artistry.

Throughout Glantz’s nine-track EP, several prominent themes surface. In the most moving way, Glantz speaks to four things: mental health, caring for an imagined or unattainable person, floating in a gray space and the aftermath of a breakup. At first listen, these themes come off as redundant, making it hard to parse them of their individuality. However, as the tracks marinate once given a few more listens, the repetition that Glantz capitalizes on doesn’t feel overdone, but rather tasteful. In short, Oh No, Not Again! offers meaningful perspectives that derive from a relationship’s rise and fall.

“IDK You Yet” and “Cry Over Boys” touch on the conflicting struggles of caring for someone that you have yet to meet. In these two tracks, Glantz portrays the tale of a hopeless romantic in the rawest form. The two songs don’t contain much dynamism, but the lucidity of the lyrics is enough to drive the tracks to their fullest potential. Sure enough, the response has been nothing short of successful. “IDK You Yet” reached viral success on TikTok last summer as a single, propelling Glantz into the mainstream media’s radar.

Following the first two are “Brainstorm” and “Nothing’s the Same.” For these songs, Glantz detours toward subjects of mental illness and the COVID-19 pandemic. With a stirring pianistic backtrack, “Brainstorm” exudes sincerity, a genuine take on his unconditional care for his partner. Jeremy Zucker shines in a collaboration with Glantz on “Nothing’s the Same,” a relatable record centered on COVID-19 and how the pandemic has upended lives everywhere. Zucker and Glantz repeatedly echo “It gets hard to remember,” alluding to the yearlong quarantine that has undeniably blended and blurred time.

Oh No, Not Again! stumbles into a tight position with “Caught in the Middle,” “Come Here and Leave Me Alone” and “She Loves Me.” In these three additions, Glantz bluntly acknowledges the unspoken grey area that exists between a couple. Whether it’s painfully noting how simple absences of day-to-day conversation grow helplessly noticeable following a breakup or fighting unbalanced personal space, Glantz acknowledges these love bumps candidly. But while he objectively reflects on his own wrongdoings, Glantz also conveys confusion when deciphering his partner’s truest feelings. In “She Loves Me,” he wonders out loud, “Girl, am I yours, are you mine? Or am I wasting my time?”

To finish off the release, Glantz writes about paralleled personas when accidentally crossing paths with an old love. “Good to See You Again” projects a cold shell he’s hardened after the end of a relationship. Glantz reaffirms in this song that he and his previous partner are meant to be separated. But while this song portrays a healed heart, Glantz’s final record, “Track 9,” proves otherwise. In this stripped down ballad, the listener gets a glance into Glantz’s closed door opinion. He’s not as okay as his demeanor suggests him to be. There is something unfinished between him and his past relationship. As the EP wraps up with this cliffhanger, it plants a mystery and ultimately leaves us wanting more.

In Oh No, Not Again!, Glantz has proven himself as music’s next big thing.The album soars as t His creativity bloomed beautifully throughout 2020 and now, it’s culminated into this successful release. he best addition to his discography to date. Glantz’s future shines bright, and as long as he keeps making music with a defined and meaningful direction, the only way is up.

Contact Ashley Tsai at [email protected].