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THE BLAZE

The Student News Site of Rock Ridge High School

THE BLAZE

The Student News Site of Rock Ridge High School

THE BLAZE

Ariana Grande Shimmers in the Bright Haze of ‘eternal sunshine’

Released on March 8, “eternal sunshine” marks Ariana Grande’s seventh album, four years after her quarantine project, “positions.” The album details the end of a romance and the beginning of a new one with a lavish sound and earworm melodies.
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Photo courtesy of Universal Music Group’s Republic Records
In “eternal sunshine,” Ariana Grande navigates the aftermath of her divorce from Dalton Gomez and the complexities of her new relationship with co-star Ethan Slater in the “Wicked” adaptation, exploring themes of heartbreak, resilience, and self-discovery.

Amid intrusive speculation about her personal life, Ariana Grande wipes away her tears and tackles the big questions of adult life with maturity, compassion, and Max Martin beats in “eternal sunshine.” As she delves into the complexities of love, heartbreak, and self-discovery in her seventh album, she embarks on a deeply personal journey that resonates with raw emotion and introspection. In a departure from her previous works, Grande confronts the uncertainties of relationships and the aftermath of a divorce with a maturity and vulnerability that hauntingly captivates listeners from start to finish.

Opening with the poignant question, “How can I tell if I’m in the right relationship?” Grande sets the tone for an album that explores the intricacies of romantic entanglements and the quest for enduring love. In tracks like “intro (end of the world)” and “bye,” she confronts the pain of letting go and the conflicting emotions that accompany the end of a partnership. Through soulful melodies and evocative lyrics, Grande lays bare her struggles and triumphs, inviting listeners to join her on a cathartic journey of self-discovery.

The album’s titular track and its standout song, “eternal sunshine,” draws inspiration from the film of the same name as Grande grapples with the desire to erase painful memories and start anew. With haunting vocals and poignant lyricism, she captures the essence of heartache and resilience, weaving a narrative that speaks to the complexities of love and loss.

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Throughout “eternal sunshine,” Grande demonstrates her versatility as an artist, seamlessly blending elements of pop, R&B, and soul to create a sound that feels both timeless and contemporary. Tracks like “true story” and fan-favorite “we can’t be friends (wait for your love)” showcase her ability to infuse emotional depth into infectious melodies, leaving a lasting impression on listeners.

“eternal sunshine’s” lead single, “yes, and?” left her audience unsure about the rest of the album’s sound, with clichéd and uninspired lyrics, lacking the depth and nuance found in her best work. But after one listens to the album in its entirety, it’s easy to understand why Grande picked it as listeners’ first glimpse into her long-awaited project. Grappling with allegations of being a homewrecker and supposedly being at fault for her divorce, Grande seems to shake it all off and confronts her audience: with the song’s waves of piano and synth and churning drums, sounds reminiscent of Madonna’s “Vogue,” Grande sounds less interested in provocation than in boundary-setting.

“eternal sunshine” stands as a testament to Grande’s growth as an artist and a woman. Through introspective storytelling and soul-stirring performances, she navigates the complexities of love and loss with grace and authenticity. As she discovers herself through music, Grande invites listeners to confront their own experiences with love and relationships, too, offering a sense of solace and understanding in the process.

In the album’s last track, “ordinary things,” Grande features a recording of Nonna (her grandmother), Marjorie speaking to a friend. On the opening track, Grande posed the question “How can I tell if I’m in the right relationship?” and Marjorie’s monologue, bookending the album, serves as an answer. It begins, mid-sentence: “And when he’d come home and I’d see him — when he first gets off that train, it was like God Almighty arrived; it was like seeing daylight.” She then offers her advice — “Never go to bed without kissing good night; that’s the worst thing to do. And if you don’t feel comfortable doing it, you’re in the wrong place; get out.” 

It’s a fitting close to an album on which Grande is seeking answers to questions she still is yearning to find answers to. If her 2020 album, “positions,” was Grande being high in the clouds about owning her power in love, “eternal sunshine” brings her back down to Earth. Relationships are imperfect, and you’ve got to commit yourself to staying. Until, of course, you want to go. If so, Grande has the perfect album for you.

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About the Contributor
Ananya Karthik
Ananya Karthik, Arts & Entertainment Editor
Ananya is a junior, and joined The Blaze staff  in her sophomore year. She is currently the Arts and Entertainment Editor, and she loves writing articles about events occurring in Rock Ridge. Her love of reading and writing, which began when she was little, only grew as she got older, and she quickly gained an interest in writing reviews. Now, she hopes to pursue a career or profession in journalism. In her free time, Ananya likes to watch TV shows, her favorite being Gilmore Girls, listen to Harry styles, and keep up with pop culture news on Instagram and Facebook.

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