REVIEW: Ariana Grande proves that everybody needs a little bit of ‘Sweetener’ in their life with her new album


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Ariana Grande enters her “sweet” era while taking a new direction in her music.

Long-awaited “Sweetener” by pop princess Ariana Grande came out last Thursday after the artist teased her fans with a few songs previewing what seems to be her new era. Unlike her previous albums that are full of energetic beats, “Sweetener” has more chill tunes and relaxing vibes.

For the first time ever, the album cover is in color, as Grande is taking a new direction in her songs. The album’s title is about “bringing light to a situation, or to someone’s life, or somebody else who brings light to your life, or sweetening the situation,” Grande announced on The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon.

“Sweetener” was greatly influenced by Grande’s rapid engagement to comedian Pete Davidson. Most of the album tracks, such as “blazed,” “R.E.M” and “Sweetener,”  are about falling in love. In “blazed,” Grande sings, “The universe so vast to me / Seven billion is on the Earth / Could’ve been anywhere, but you’re here with me.” On “Sweetener,” Grande mostly sings about how grateful she is to have someone who loves her, unlike on previous albums, where she sings about wanting relationships.

Grande’s decision to dedicate most of the songs on the album to Davidson is a bit radical; the stresses of a public relationship could lead to a breakup and the songs would still exist. However, Grande seems to acknowledge this as she said on Twitter, “Music lasts forever.” She wants to remember the good times, even if something goes bad.

Aside from singing about being in love, Grande also delivers a relatable post-breakup ballad. In the song “better off” she sings about how her ex-boyfriend was not fully committed to the romance, so she is “better off” without him. Since Grande is mostly known for her songs about love and relationships, hearing such an empowering piece about being single definitely takes her music to a new level.

A sorrowful event that also influenced Grande’s music was the Manchester Arena bombing at one of her concerts last year. The artist concluded the song “get well soon” with 40 seconds of silence for the 22 people who were killed. The silence brings the song’s length to 5:22, which was the date of the attack.

In “breathin,” Grande sings about the anxiety attacks she experiences from this event. Her vocals and strong lyrics such as “Feel my blood runnin’, swear the sky’s fallin’ / How do I know if this s***’s fabricated?” makes this song one of the best on the album.

The tunes of “Sweetener” jump from mellow and calm to lively and empowering, but they all carry out positive energy and hope for better times. Grande bared her soul in the 15 tracks so everybody can enjoy the raw, soothing energy of her music.