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‘Positions’ displays just how versatile Ariana Grande is

By Arianna Sergio Ariana Grande is one of the most popular and influential people in the world right now and, needless to say, needs no introduction. With a whopping 205.5 million followers on Instagram, 78.4 million followers on Twitter, and 57 million monthly listeners on Spotify, Grande has made her mark on the pop music industry forever. Positions is Grande's sixth studio album, after the massive worldwide success that was her previous album, thank u, next. Positions delves into themes of trust, sex, love, falling in love, and intimacy. Grande captivates listeners and takes them with her on her journey of falling in love, dubiously, after previously being hurt time and time again by it. She uses various metaphors and clever play-on-words to assert and reveal her intimate desires and needs.

Let’s talk about sex, baby

“Positions” is the lead single off of Positions. This song discusses Grande’s commitment and love for her boyfriend with her flexibility in trying to make their relationship work. The chorus,
“Switchin' them positions for you/ Cookin' in the kitchen and I'm in the bedroom/ I'm in the Olympics, way I'm jumpin' through hoops/ Know my love infinite, nothin’ I wouldn’t do/ That I won't do, switchin’ for you,”
gives the word “positions,” a double meaning. In one way, it refers to how Grande is changing her role in the relationship, from doing housework to becoming intimate with her significant other. Contrary to that, it could be taken a step further, and be interpreted as literally changing positions while being intimate with her significant other. “34+35” adds up to 69, which is the sex position Grande is yearning for throughout the entirety of this lustful song. The song title also acts as a play on the album’s title. Even though the song is extremely sexual throughout, Grande sings the lyrics,
“Math class/ Never was good,”
as the song’s outro. She jokingly ends the song with the fact that she was never good at math, undermining the sexual nature in the majority of the song and letting her goofy personality shine. “Nasty” just oozes sex appeal. The chorus repeats Grande singing how “tonight” she wants to get “nasty” and she doesn’t want to wait any longer. She then rhetorically asks what her significant other is waiting for. It flawlessly depicts one of Grande’s consistent themes on the album, sex. In this song, Grande is straightforward with her significant other, by telling him how bad she needs him and wants him. 

Collabscollabscollabs

“Motive” feat. Doja Cat and is produced by Murda Beatz. Murda Beatz has produced many songs for popular mainstream artists, like Nicki Minaj, Cardi B, and Drake. This is Murda Beatz’s first collaboration with not only Grande but also Doja Cat. “Motive” is the type of song that you would hear while you’re shopping in Forever 21 and trying on clothes in the dressing room. It’s upbeat and uptempo but falls flat along the way. The chorus is too repetitive and a pitfall, making it boring and ultimately bland. Doja Cat’s verse is not as memorable as it was expected to be. Her verse didn’t pack a punch like her verses/lyrics in her hit songs, like “Say So,” “Juicy,” and “Rules,” have. “Safety net” feat. Ty Dolla $ign is about giving your everything to make a relationship work and taking that extra leap of faith. In the chorus,
“Tripping, falling, with no safety net/ Got me tripping, falling, with no safety net,”
Grande sings that even though you don't know if that relationship is going to work, she is willing to still give it a try and, in the end, risk it all for that person. Ty Dolla $ign’s voice flourishes with Grande’s, creating an enchanting and divine experience for the listener. “Off the table” feat. The Weeknd is the strongest collaboration out of the three. This is Grande and The Weeknd’s second collaboration after their 2014 smash hit, “Love Me Harder.” This song includes a slow, synth-heavy instrumental, topped off by profuse and delightful strings in the background. The first verse,
“Will I ever love the same way again? (Way again)/ Will I ever love somebody like the way I did you?/ If I can't have you, is love completely off the table?/ Just wanna know is love completely off the table?”
has Grande questioning if she will ever find love again. She is dwelling on her previous relationships and second-guessing if she will ever find that again. The Weeknd plays her love interest, and he assures her that he can fill those shoes and be exactly what she needs. Throughout The Weeknd’s verse, he makes references to his past songs, “Hurt You,” “Love Me Harder,” and “The Hills.” This works in favor of the song because he is leaving a trail of breadcrumbs for his true fans. This is something more artists should do when they are featured on songs.

Another shot at love

“Obvious” talks about how Grande is starting to believe in love again and how her current significant other is helping her in believing in love again. This song has a sweet and comforting melody that drips onto her endearing lyrics. “Love language” is about Grande learning her significant other’s love language in hopes that she can improve in expressing her love for him and she communicates how she wants her significant other to do the same for her. Love languages are various ways that romantic partners give and receive love. There are five different types of love languages: quality time, physical touch, words of affirmation, acts of service, and receiving gifts. In “my hair,” Grande quite literally lets her hair down and bares it all. This 90s style R&B song is about being comfortable enough for her significant other to “run his hands through her hair” when they are intimate, which is an extremely vulnerable action to do, which is another sign that she is opening up to love. “Pov” is hands down the best song on Positions, no competition. This song will surely make you cry the first time you listen to it. It’s about the heartbreaking reality of not loving yourself and wishing to see yourself from your significant other’s perspective, to know why they admire and love you despite all of your imperfections. And maybe after seeing that, you will believe that you are good enough and worthy of someone’s love. Her silky vocals are on full display as the relaxing percussion and string instrumental plays in the background, building up throughout the song only to let her powerhouse voice take center stage. The lyricism in this song solidifies Grande at her best.

Top Tracks:

pov 34+35 off the table

Recommended if you like:

Selena Gomez Camila Cabello Demi Lovato
Sources: 5 Love Languages

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