Ariana shares 5 new additions in “Positions (Deluxe)”


“Positions” and “Positions (Deluxe)” album cover picturing Ariana Grande (Photo Courtesy of Wikipedia).

“Positions (Deluxe)” dropped at midnight, adding 5 more tracks to Ariana’s sixth studio album. All additions were recorded and made during the birth of the original album. Grande’s purpose for withholding the songs was to give the album a second life.

“Positions” is clearly Ariana’s happiest life moments wrapped up into an album. Like most of her albums, she mainly talks about her love life. Yet this time, instead of heartbreak and insecurity, her lyrics show openness, vulnerability, and generosity of love: the beautiful “pov,” the vulnerable “safety net,” the confident “34+35,” and the devoted “Positions” which you can read more about here.

The 5 new additions to the album were able to revive her already well-put-together tracklist. The songs are on the short side, averaging to be around 2 minutes long, which helps to keep listeners engaged. Since the additions have the same romantic or light-hearted lyrics, bright vocals, and fast-paced rhythm, the songs mesh together upon the first few listens. The three standouts “test drive,” “worst behavior,” and “main thing” make it hard to choose my favorite addition.

“someone like u”

Track 15 is an interlude titled, “someone like u”, that lasts for a little more than a minute. Ariana’s voice comes in at fifteen seconds, followed by background rhythmic snaps, with a beat drop 32 seconds in. It’s a dreamy RnB ballad with lovely harmonizing by Ariana. The lyrics show that the person she’s with is her ideal partner. The line, “please don’t be too good to be true” parallels with “positions” line “You’re too good to be true.” The interlude is short and repetitive- as most interludes are- to smoothly transition to the album’s deluxe songs.

“test drive”

Track 16 is the quick, upbeat, and flirty “test drive.” This song was once debated to take the place of “love language” on the standard album, but “love language” was kept. Still, I enjoy this song more and it’s definitely one of my favorites. The beat comes in with her voice, making it already a catchy tune. She establishes control and dominance in her words, saying she is “always in control.” Her lyrics are short phrases that match the fast-paced rhythm of the song. Her central theme is unwavering loyalty to her partner, shown through car metaphors. No “test drive” or  “checkin’ the rearview” because she is sure of her chosen partner and hopeful for their future together. She’s “ride or die” and confident of a long-term relationship. The song ends as abruptly as it begins, making us wish we had more of this bop to listen to.

“34+35 Remix (feat. Doja Cat, Megan Thee Stallion) – Remix

Track 17 is a remix of track 2 featuring rappers Doja Cat and Megan Thee Stallion. The song was originally released on January 13th and the music video just last Friday. The song contains flirty light-hearted lines and is also filled with many direct sexual references. Both rap verses ultimately work well on the song, but Doja’s verse fits well and better captures the essence of the song. Megan’s flow feels out of place and doesn’t allow her to add much to the song. The beauty of this song is that women are owning their sexualities and their needs. This alters the narrative from the typical sexualization of women in music (and in real life) which pushes shame and guilt upon women. 34+35 is a fun, upbeat bop!

“worst behavior”

Between the 3 unheard full songs, “worst behavior” sets itself apart from “test drive” and “main thing” in terms of style. It has a sultry RnB and neo-soul tone which goes well with the lyrics. She sings in her head voice in the pre-chorus, but switches to her chest voice and drops her pitch at the chorus. In her lyrics she shows that she’s been acting different, but she likes how carefree she feels. She asks for her partner to keep their relationship more private. “No phone, no pics, no postin’ us” because their love “ain’t disposable.” The song’s repetitiveness makes it catchy to listen to, especially in the chorus. “Worst behavior” is a wonderful addition to the album and brings a slightly different sound to the table.

“main thing”

Ariana’s deluxe album ends with the beautiful “main thing,” which is personally my favorite. The song is dreamy and soft with styles of both pop and RnB. The romantic theme reminds me of “obvious.” Similar to “obvious,” where she sings how she’s able to believe in love again, “main thing” shows Ariana’s true and deep admiration and love for her partner. Like she makes clear in a lot of her songs, her current partner is “really different” from her past loves. She also pulls a direct line from “love language”: “Been a minute since I tasted something so sweet.” Her line “Got me trippin'” alludes to the line “Got me tripping, falling, with no safety net” in “safety net.” She doesn’t have much originality in her lyrics, but the emotions the song evokes make up for it. The falsetto voice singing the run “You” and the rest of the chorus “oh you’re really different, baby” makes this song sound straight from a fairytale.