Ariana Grande Positions: Album Review


Ariana Grande was nominated in five categories at the 62nd Annual Grammy Awards.

Stephanee Hartfield, Staffer


Ariana Grande recently came out with her 6th studio album named Positions on October 30th. With previous No 1. hits like Thank You, Next and Sweetener being obvious people-pleasers, fans are expecting Grande to go above and beyond with this highly anticipated album.

Sweetener Repeat?

The most recurring complaint about Grande is her repeating theme in music. Since her start in the industry, she has been compared to Mariah Carey and was accused of copying her style. Positions face a similar antagonism with fans upset that Grande’s songs sound the same. While some songs on the tracklist have a similar upbeat theme, it doesn’t take away from the artistic value of the album itself. As Grande matured, her songs have also changed with her. Songs like “One last time” and “Last Christmas” make up the early Pop stages of her career, while her late works “Rule the World” and “R.E.M” both delve into Rhythm and Blues(R&B). While Positions, Grande’s new album,  has its fair share of OG Pop Ariana, it also expresses a deeper look into an R&B style that Grande rarely shares.

Finding Ariana Grande

Thank You, Next, Sweetener and Positions all show Grande at different stages of maturity. Grande has always been private about her life but has not been afraid to show her fans what she’s learned through her music. Listeners get an insight into relationship drama, mental state and most importantly how to grow from mistakes. Not only are these topics relatable to most teenagers, but Grande teaches her fans how to work through issues in life and come out better than ever. Thank You, Next was an album released after the untimely death of Mac Miller and is an ode to the hard times. Tracks like  “Fake Smile”, “Imagine” and “Thank You, Next” explain in detail the turmoil Grande felt after Mac Miller’s death, her break-up with almost fiancé Pete Davidson and the attack at her concert in Manchester, England. After a brief Hiatus, Grande returns with the song “Shut Up”, acting as a mental check-up for the first track on the Positions album. Throughout the album, Grande is clearly happier, and tells her fans everything she’s learned through her relationship and what she’s still working on. Her progression throughout time as expressed in her albums is a special inspiration to teens that listen to her music. The journey to finding herself and finding love is a hardship everyone can relate to, and Grande is the perfect example of how to find the light at the end of the tunnel. 

Rated R… but for teens

The introduction of the album is the only song that most teens can innocently play around their parents. Grande tells the audience how she has been and moves straight into the birds and the bees’ beeswax. The album name is a nod towards the topics discussed in the tracks, but no one expected Grande to go this full throttle. “She’s tryna meet yo mama on a Sunday” and get everyone grounded for knowing the lyrics to that song. EVERY SINGLE TRACK after “Shut Up” is inappropriate for those who haven’t had “the talk” with their parents. There is no such thing as a flirty undertone when it comes to songs like “34+35”,  ”Positions” and “My hair”. Positions is Grande’s raunchiest album to date, and it earned the Explicit tag, but I think it is suitable for most teens. The album ends out with the heartfelt “POV” which expresses her love for Dalton Gomez, her boyfriend. She gives us insight into the connection she feels with him and how he makes her feel better about herself, making up for the “Nasty” details of her love life. Despite my opinion on the ratings for the album, the true decision making goes to the parents.

Top 10 “Positions” (this was really hard to do)

  1. *My Hair* 

My hair is the perfect blend of R&B mixed with Ariana’s start-studded vocals.

  1. *Positions*

“Positions” gave us a peek into what the album had to offer on its early release, and it did not disappoint. Grande shows off difficult riffs with another hit R&B track.

  1. *POV*

“POV” was the perfect conclusion to the otherwise upbeat track. It has a soothing melody that leaves listeners off with a feeling of wonderment towards Grande’s relationship.

  1. *Love Language*

The intro to this song alone makes me really happy. It’s fast-paced and funky with just enough diction to get “I want you to keep speaking my love language” stuck in your head.

  1. *Shut Up*

“Shut Up” is Grande’s comeback that opens the album. It is a quick snap at the haters and a hello to all the fans that missed her.

  1. *34+35*

“34+35” is one long catchy tune. The message is slightly explicit, but the beat matches up impeccably with Grande’s falsetto.

  1. *Motive*

I was going to stop descriptions at 5 but I just have one thing to say…Doja Cat…

  1. * Obvious*

Though most songs in the album focus on how Dalton Gomez feels about Grande, this upbeat flips the script by expressing how Grande feels about her new boo.

  1. *Just like magic*

The vibe of this song is truly hypnotic and Grande’s lyrical rhythm and harmonies only add to it’s enchanting aesthetic. 

  1. *Nasty*

This song is full of innuendos but who wouldn’t love hearing Ariana Grande laugh along with fade-away high notes as the intro to their song?