Grounded, honest, and healed are just a few of the words one could use to represent how Ariana Grande appears on her seventh studio album, “eternal sunshine”. Coming nearly four years after her last album, “Positions”, “eternal sunshine” explores the complexity of relationships and navigating outside noise while rebuilding your life. Starting the record with the question “How can I tell if I’m in the right relationship?” on “intro (end of the world) immediately sets the tone, and lets listeners know that they are in for a ride. Following the ethereal intro, Grande delivers a thankful declaration of independence from someone on “bye”, a cathartic disco-infused track. “don’t want to break up again” feels like the internal dialogue of Grande, as she comes to accept the situation she has found herself in as she navigates her way out. “Saturn Returns Interlude” includes a spoken word by Diana Garland describing a saturn return, a period in one's life where ignored patterns become prevalent issues, with a dreamy instrumental that flows seamlessly into the album title track. “eternal sunshine” effortlessly shows as not only a standout track of the album, but of Grande’s entire discography. 
Perfectly embodying the themes of the entire album, “eternal sunshine” depicts the story of a relationship that leaves a lasting impression on someone, being a situation to forever grow from. The ethereal “supernatural” shows a slight tone shift in the album, as Grande sings about falling for somebody new on a dreamy mid-tempo R&B infused pop track. “true story” shows Grande playing with the scrutiny that she has been placed under that past year, as she sings “I’ll play the bad villain if you need me to/I know how this goes”. Continuing the playful dialogue that started on “true story”, “the boy is mine” dives into the “bad girl” persona that many people project onto Grande. Rounding out this run of tracks is the hit lead single “yes, and?”, reminding listeners that everyone has their own business going on, and that people should mind their own. “we can’t be friends (wait for your love), the tenth track on “eternal sunshine”, serves as yet another one of Grande’s standout songs of her whole career, as well as on this album. The self-written track slyly addresses Grande’s relationship with the media and people who have treated her poorly, despite not knowing her personally or the truth of any situation. The track soared to the top of the charts alongside the release of “eternal sunshine”, solidifying Ariana’s message to listeners all over. “i wish i hated you” is the only true ballad on “eternal sunshine”, a stunning synth ballad where Ariana wishes that she had a reason to hate someone in order to make moving on from them easier.
 Next up is “imperfect for you”, a 60s soul infused R&B pop track that points out the beauty in being able to have people in your life who you can be unapologetically imperfect around. Closing out the album is “ordinary things”, in which Grande’s Nonna answers the question at the very beginning of the album. As Nonna says, “Never go to bed without kissin' goodnight/That's the worst thing to do, don't ever, ever do that/And if you can't, and if you don't feel comfortable doing it, you're in the wrong place, get out” As soon as the final track ends, it becomes clear that this is the most thoughtful, placed, and tapped into artistry that Grande has ever been. Of course, all her other albums still have that special magic to them. Yet here, Grande is in control of the narrative. With so much noise that has surrounded her name within the past year, she has used her art to speak for her. Proving that she always has tricks up her sleeve, “eternal sunshine” feels like the beginning of the next chapter of Grande’s musical career. If this is just the beginning of what’s next, the world isn’t ready for what’s to come for Grande. Listen to "eternal sunshine" below!
- Logan Bandi

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