Ariana Grande released her sixth studio album, Positions, on October 30 2020, and let’s just say that it was an absolute hit. Ms. Grande set the tone for her album with the lead single, “Positions,” a song about her new found love and how she’ll be “switchin’ the positions” in order to keep her new love happy and satisfied. Reminiscent of her first studio album, Yours Truly, Ms. Grande provided R&B hits after hits with features consisting of The Weeknd, Doja Cat, and Ty Dollar $ign. From “34+35” to “nasty” to “pov,” Ms. Grande served bangers about banging, love, and growth, delving deep into her sexual side, yet singing it in her angelic voice that we’ve all grown to love and enjoy. Grande explores topics such as self-love, which is the prominent factor in her final song of the album, “pov,” where she sings about loving herself the way her lover does. Grande displays her vocal prowess in every song, hidden in the harmonies and melodies, proving that she is a force to be reckoned with.
In her opening song, “shut up,” Grande addresses her haters, telling them to shut up and stop worrying about her life. Grande has had her fair share of haters throughout the years, especially after the tragic events of her 2017 Manchester concert, the death of Mac Miller, and termination of her engagement with ex-fiancé, Pete Davidson. With “shut up,” Grande basically tells them to worry about their own business and not hers in an elegant and beautiful way. Grande then switches up the pace with her second single, “34+35,” where she goes all out in explaining how she wants to make love to her lover from midnight to daylight. “34+35” is a raunchy song, much more different than her past singles, like “Side-to-Side,” but it easily became a fan favorite amongst her fans and the general public. The song is sexually empowering and proves that Grande is a grown woman, no longer to be confused with and compared to her Nickelodeon character, Cat Valentine.
My personal favorites off of Positions would have to be “obvious,” “motive (feat. Doja Cat)” and “off the table (feat. The Weeknd).” The production and lyrics of these songs are simply catchy, beautiful and unforgettable. I could have these three songs on repeat for hours and I wouldn’t get tired whatsoever. They truly showcase how Grande has grown as a person and uses her voice to produce works of art.
With the help of her frequent collaborators, TBHits, Victoria Monét, Tyla Parx, and many others, Ariana Grande created an album that I personally believe surpasses her previous works. The production, vocals, arrangements and lyrics are much more mature and fitting for Grande’s vocal prowess. R&B is a genre where Grande excels in and provided a 5-course meal and left no crumbs to spare. Nobody can compete with Grande, except herself. Positions displays how she constantly reinvents herself and produces albums that are better than her previous works, cementing herself as one of the greatest singers of our generation.
Art by Art Editor Adam Dee.