Ariana Grande’s “Positions” album leaves fans speechless

The album cover for Ariana Grande's

Republic Records

The album cover for Ariana Grande’s “Positions”.

Sophia Keang, Reviews-Opinions Editor

Saying Ariana Grande is one of the most talented musical artists in the music industry is an understatement. Grande’s sixth studio album, Positions, is crushing the charts since its release on October 30. The singer-songwriter’s album consists of themes that dive deep into Grande’s freedom and fear of falling in love again.

Prior to the release of the album, Grande released award-winning hits including “Stuck with U” (a collaboration with Justin Bieber), and “Rain on Me” (a collaboration with Lady Gaga). The jaw-dropping art Ariana Grande created left fans in awe as the singer took home three MTV Music Awards from “Stuck with U” and “Rain on Me”.

Grande’s Positions took the country by storm as it became her fifth No. 1 on the Billboard Hot 100 according to Billboard.

Positions includes fourteen pop music singles with hints of contemporary R&B. Grande features some fan-favorites in her album such as Doja Cat, The Weekend, and Ty Dolla $ign. According to an interview with the Zach Sang Show. The introduction for each song started off with a set of strings playing.

“First we [Grande and her team] started off using strings just with “shut up” and “34+35″ […]. So I wanted those [strings] in there to make it more fun lyrically and also musically at the same time so it feels orchestral and sophisticated,” said Grande in the interview.

Adding in that small introduction enhances each song and keeps listeners on their toes. All the songs have a unique set of strings that also can be used to foreshadow the beat and tone of the song.

With Grande’s signature style of low-tempo pop, she continues to surprise fans with Positions being one of her most upbeat track-lists yet.

The track-list starts off with Grande’s “shut up”. According to the interview with the Zach Sang Show, Grande wanted to introduce the album by giving off positive vibes. 

“The song is kind of like an invitation to act differently. It’s about people who you feel badly for because they spend so much time living in the negative world,” said Grande in the interview.

In “shut up”, Grande also elaborates on self-help by talking about meditation and manifesting one’s wishes by writing things down and sending them ‘to heaven’. 

Much of the track consists of chill and laid-back songs with hints of hip-hop. However, in comparison to prior albums, the songs were more upbeat. Featured artists like Ty Dolla $ign and The Weeknd contribute their hip-hop flair into the songs, though much of the album is quite leisurely and calming. 

One of my favorite songs on the album was “positions”. It is definitely Grande’s more mature and sophisticated songs on the album. However, the eye-catching edits and costumes in the music video added the cherry on top. The rhythm is more towards the upbeat side of her music. It makes sense that many people believe this song refers to her current boyfriend Dalton Gomez, talking about how she’s “tryna meet your [Dalton’s] mama” and how “Heaven sent you [Dalton] to me”.

Another song that’s at the top of my list is “safety net” featuring Ty Dolla $ign. In the song, Grande refers to the loss of her ex-boyfriend Mac Miller and her break-up with Pete Davidson. With this slow-jam, Grande hopes that listeners understand the importance of opening yourself up to others and allowing love back into your life even after experiencing pain.

I loved the album because I mainly listen to pop and R&B. With Grande’s signature style of low-tempo music, the featured artists added the touch of pop I needed. The songs that include featured artists such as “motive”, “off the table”, and “safety Net” definitely make up for Grande’s lack of hip-hop.

For those who enjoy listening to artists like Khalid and H.E.R., I highly recommend giving this album a try. With a mix of low hip-hop, pop, and hints of R&B, it was definitely up my alley.

Overall, Positions is a work of art. Fans can really understand that a pop sensation like Ariana Grande, doesn’t always have a ‘perfect life’. Almost all of her songs reflect on someone who has been through a tremendous amount of pain and loss in the past, showing how someone like Grande can take bad experiences and turn it into something beautiful.  

People need music to bring each other together in a world where we are so divided, and I think Positions does a perfect job.

10/10, highly recommend