Artist spotlight: X.ILE from Queens

Eccentricity can be an unsettling space to operate in. But, like most frantic states , when harnessed it can bring about thought-provoking, abstract art. Such is the case with Queens-based rapper, DJ, and producer, X.ILE (born, Xavier Maymi).

Having shared the stage with artists such as The Chainsmokers, Meek Mill, French Montana and more, the jack-of-all-trades emcee has begun his ascension into the world of recording artists. His own solo work has garnered attention from established tastemakers. His records, “Buffalo” and “Carnota” were both featured on Eminem’s Sirius XM station Shade 45 and its flagship program Sway in The Morning, while “JAM” featured on SiriusXM HipHop Nation’s Discovery Channel.

Beginning his career at the age of 14, he has placed himself in a position to grow as an artist with many years invested into his craft. But, in an era where all it takes is a large social media following to get a record contract, he hasn’t stagnated, taking the old-school route of self-improvement and variation to achieving his goals. His resourcefulness when it comes to his music videos (which aren’t high budget but remain action packed), is a testament to his dedication to the craft of being an entertainer. Many artists drop a record and hope for the best, X.ILE is looking to tell a story through his music and visuals are a big part of that process.

Unafraid to foster an environment where all genres can coexist throughout his music, X.ILE does not rely on flashiness, nor tall tales of grand living. Much like his diversified sound, X.ILE’s appeal comes from the many ways he can impact a listener. Even if you’re not a fan of his rapping, you’re sure to enjoy his well-thought out, over-the-top visuals, which tend to look like controlled chaos. If not, then his production might get you.  

His latest record, “BLEACH,” perfectly encapsulates his artistry. The record itself feels oxymoronic, beginning with a simple acoustic guitar before all hell breaking loose. Featuring different voice inflections, various flows, drum patterns and instrumentation. It can feel like a lot is going on, until realizing the anarchy throughout the production reflects the record itself, as he ties it all in with a music video equally full of pandemonium. 

The serenity at the beginning of the record can be interpreted as the calm before the storm that is life. Filmed in the woods, X.ILE is seen in a serene environment holding just an acoustic guitar and a bottle of bleach. He then goes into a solemn spiel about how his need to be liked consumes him, more so than money, fame and even his rent. After taking a swig of the bleach, utter musical and visual chaos ensues, before returning to the same woods bloodied with his guitar broken. X.ILE takes another chug of the germicide, insinuating that after all the heartache and chaos, all we want is for our troubles to evaporate, which is what the bleach seems to represent. Now, bleach can’t get rid of anyone’s troubles, but as a fatal chemical, to some, it may be one-in-the-same. 

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