Ella Mai “Heart On My Sleeve” (Deluxe Edition) Album Review

Heart On My Sleeve (Deluxe Edition)

Ella Mai

  • Genre: R&B/Soul
  • Date: 02 Feb, 2023
  • Content: explicit
  • Region: NGA
  • Track(s): 18
  • A 10 Summers/Interscope Records Release; ℗ 2023 10 Summers Records, LLC

Ella Mai released her eagerly anticipated sophomore album, Heart On My Sleeve, in 2022. The album was her self-titled debut’s follow-up. Heart On My Sleeve, on the other hand, had a more intimate feel and offered a thorough picture of Ella Mai’s potential. Ella Mai collaborated with producers on the 15-song project, including Mustard, Boi-1da, and others. In addition, she collaborated with other musicians, including Roddy Ricch, Lucky Daye, and Latto.

Although the original project still receives a lot of airplay, she returned this week with even more fire for her followers. She delivered the official deluxe version of Heart On My Sleeve, with three more records. Mustard and Kaytranada contribute to the production of “2 O’Clock,” a bop. However, Mai’s vulnerability steals the show.

Album Cover Art

Ella Mai &Quot;Heart On My Sleeve&Quot; (Deluxe Edition) Album Review, Yours Truly, Reviews, May 23, 2024

The original album cover for the first edition of this album was changed to black and white and decided for its deluxe edition. Ella is on a reflective floor, her hand supporting her head as she lies pensively while maintaining beauty and elegance.

Tracks and Features

Ella begins the “Heart On My Sleeve” deluxe edition with the somber “2 O’Clock.” Ella is singing about a frustrating situation in such a sweet manner, or maybe because she is already drained. She is completely fed up with her estranged lover’s antics and how she always falls for them, regardless. She complains about how emotionally unstable he is, constantly blowing hot and cold. Now she is up by 2 a.m., staring at her reoccurring mistake of sleeping on her bed after using her once again. The bass in the instrumental rides and fall together in sync with the drums as Ella does her thing. Another beautiful highlight is when Ella goes, “Eh, eh, eh, eh,” and the guitar strings strum in the background. Also, toward the song’s end, the combo of Ella’s voice and the strings again give it that final magical finishing.

“This Is” enters with piano keys that quickly invite trumpets to the slow-dance party. Ella croons on this song, serving steamy ad-libs, backup harmonizing vocals that are on point, and charming falsettos you would want to rewind to listen to again. In the song, Mai is so intrigued by a new love that, of course, comes with a new lover. To Ella, this is her final bus stop. The track declares her assurance for this new love she found. She also vowed to call her new lover’s attention when he was not getting things right. She is so willing to pour out her love, so cocksure that she has found her Mr. Right, the one with whom she can start the lifelong journey of forever. The instrumental also help with driving in every romantic detail of the very relaxing tune. Ella is such a great singer.

Bringing things to a serenading end, “Our Song” takes charge. This song would easily make the “nasty decent songs” playlist. Mai is singing about some Rated R stuff but in a harmless yet enchanting way. Like, doing something intentionally but, all the while, acting oblivious. Moreover, her keeping away from the profanity lane does not diminish the song’s charm and theme, which is enjoying a passionate, intimate time with a lover. She presents the nastiness song in an encoded manner that only grown folks can appreciate. A grown song for grown folks, literally. Ella also uses her iconic ad-libs and harmonizes backup vocals to blend with the lead guitar strumming and gently banging drums on a loop in the background. A fantastic close for a massive project.





1 Trying 3:17
2 Not Another Love Song 4:15
3 Didn’t Say (feat. Latto) 4:05
4 Break My Heart 3:14
5 Fallen Angel 4:21
6 How (feat. Roddy Ricch) 3:38
7 Pieces 3:18
8 DFMU 3:17
9 Hide 3:28
10 Power Of A Woman 3:33
11 A Mess (feat. Lucky Daye) 3:53
12 Feels Like 3:19
13 Leave You Alone 3:29
14 Sink or Swim 3:54
15 Fading Out 3:34
16 2 O’Clock 3:50
17 This Is 3:26
18 Our Song 3:19

Album Theme

Being free with being vulnerable while telling exciting tales about the beauty and turbulence that often accompany love.

Production Credits

Ali P, Ari PenSmith, Bass Charity, Boi-1da, J Holt, J.LBS, Jorgen Odegard, JV (USA), KAYTRANADA, Khristopher Riddick-Tynes, Lee Major, Marco Bernardis, Meko Yohannes, Mustard, Nic Nac, P2J and many other talented sound men handled the album’s production.


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