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Mead High School’s Student News

The Mav

Ariana Grande’s new album ‘eternal sunshine’ takes romantic inventory in my mind

Pop princess, Ariana Grande’s new album is an airy masterpiece
Ariana Grande’s recent album was a heart-wrenching breakup breakthrough

Released on March 8, 2024, mega pop star Ariana Grande spoon-fed fans dinner with her new album, eternal sunshine. Carrying 13 songs and spanning just over 35 minutes, eternal sunshine has caught the attention of the public eye with singles like “yes, and?” and an emotional, storytelling music video for “we can’t be friends (wait for your love)”. Starting hot off the Billboard Top 100 at number one, making it Ariana’s sixth number-one on the chart, she is now the most popular woman in music, carrying the most Hot 100 number-one Billboard debuts.

Based on the 2004 film Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind, which follows a couple who undergo a procedure to erase their memory after a heartbreaking end to their relationship, Parallels from the film to Grande’s music video for “we can’t be friends (wait for your love)” can be drawn in the eyes of the viewer when seeing her undergo a similar experience.

Besides having an incredible music video, track 10 of Grande’s new album is by far one of the most beautiful songs I’ve ever heard. Beginning in verse 1, Ariana put rumors to rest by subtly addressing the “homewrecker” accusations that rose in July 2023 upon the publicity of her new relationship with Ethan Slater, a famous Broadway actor. She says, “I didn’t think you’d understand me / How could you ever even try? /I don’t wanna tiptoe, but I don’t wanna hide / But I don’t wanna feed this monstrous fire / Just wanna let this story die / And I’ll be alright.”

This song is an absolute tearjerker. Having been well-versed in relationships where you literally cannot be together, this melody felt like Ariana made it specifically for me. Hitting all seven elements of music: rhythm, melody, harmony, form, timbre, texture, and dynamics, the lyrics “We can’t be friends (wait for your love)” floats in my ears. Going hand-in-hand with the levitating vocals, Grande moved me to tears with her music video for the track.

It follows the same story, showing a young woman erasing all the memories of a past relationship. The memories she’s erasing appear in a flashback, showing all the good times the couple had together. Connecting back to the overarching theme of having to let the closest loved ones go, Ariana makes many subtle references to her late ex-boyfriend, Mac Miller, throughout the video.

Focusing on one of the lesser talked-about songs on the album, track 11, “i wish I hated you,” is a beautiful addition. After divorcing her ex-husband, Dalton Gomez, it is suspected that verse 1 is written to insinuate nothing but good things about him — the song goes, “Hung all my clothes in the closet you made / Your shoes still in boxes, I send them your way / Hoping life brings you no new pain.”

In light of such a solemn release, Ariana hovers over every melody seamlessly to create depth and meaning in any song. My favorite thing about this song is the unique approach Ariana takes to the pre-chorus by skipping across lyrics, like a child skipping rocks across a crystal-clear lake. The feathery instrumentals that span throughout remind me of Tinker Bell: luminescent, delicate, and easy.

When writing such a beautiful song, an artist must think of their audience — an obvious talent is Grande’s work. In an interview with Zach Sang, Grande said, “It’s one of those that I’m so glad that feeling is captured on this album, but it’s one that I won’t listen to probably or sing live probably, but I think it’s like a very important color to exist within the album.”

Encapsulating grief and reigning into a top-ten breakup song, “i wish i hated you” is an underrated, sob-worthy bar on the album.

Ariana’s seventh studio album, eternal sunshine was a heartbreaking addition to everyone’s breakup playlist. As always, her vocals were amazing, with meaningful lyrics and beautiful melodies. I give Grande’s new album an 8/10.

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About the Contributor
Shayd Fuller
Shayd Fuller, Content Editor
Shayd Fuller is a junior. She enjoys playing with her dogs and hanging out with friends and family. She is looking forward to meeting new people and being part of The Mav. 
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