I Made My Friends Recap Ariana Grande's New Album, thank u, next

The time has finally come: Ariana Grande dropped her new album, thank u, next, and like, we have feelings? In honor of her new album, we’re doing a live listen to sort out these feelings. Do we stan? Do we not stan? Is this a totally genius moment for Ariana Grande, or is she lowkey just hopping on the ‘90s R&B train? Does she just have a lot of feelings and want to sing about them?

Real talk: girl has been through a ton of shit this year. We don’t need to re-hash it all, but there’s a reason we all feel so immersed in her world. She has a big heart, and the album throws it all down on the table. In many ways, it feels impossible to separate Ariana Grande’s wild, heartbreak-filled year with the songs on this album, and it’s probably because, at least externally, they’re pretty much the same thing.

How we felt, overall:

If you listen through the whole album through it feels like your relieving her emotions through the year and tbh I can relate it to some point in my life. - Edel

Sounds a little #cheesy, but you can really hear the pain and growth in this album, even if the songs are pretty upbeat and catchy. Ariana is one strong woman and you can hear it in every song. Keep doing your thing, Ari, we’re all literally rooting for you.  - Felicity

The breakup album you never knew you needed because it forces some self-reflection and gets you thinking, maybe I was part of the problem too? Maybe I really did like them more than I thought? Maybe I’m really not OK? And who ever wants to admit that!? - Priscilla

I want to root for her so hard and yet I have such mixed feelings??? - Rachel

The song list, & our reactions:

1. Imagine

Sorry but this is also knock-off Sza. It’s like she just discovered R&B or something? - Rachel

2. Needy

An honest and unapologetic look at everything she’s been through and who she is, and I’m here for it. - Priscilla

3. NASA

I think I like this one the best. I think her rapping is v odd, but I think this is the most like, easy-listening, chill song. - Rachel

When Ariana said “I need space” repeatedly on NASA, I felt that - Felicity

Wait we literally have a sticker that says “I Need Space” in the store, sorry not sorry for the shameless plug. - Rachel

4. Bloodline

Okay, 5 seconds in I got major Beyoncé vibes - Felicity

^YES. I was like, okay, Beyoncé time. It feels weird that no one is featured on this one. It feels like it would be stronger with like, 2-3 voices. Or maybe it feels like v early Rihanna? - Rachel

This is like when the rebound is hoping to become a permanent thing and you’re just like nah, sorry but not sorry? - Priscilla

5. Fake Smile

Unless I’m just making this up in my head, I feel like this song is a sly diss at the fact that media/paparazzi/men in general get angry when women aren’t smiling??? Like, if I’m unhappy I’m not going to smile just to smile, thanks. - Felicity

 
 
 
 

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

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Okay I lied, this one is my favorite. This makes me want to put on high heeled boots and a leather jacket and stomp around town and flip off boys who tell me to smile. - Rachel

“I can’t fake another smile/I can’t fake like I’m alright/And I won’t say I’m feeling fine/After what I been through, I can’t lie.” That is all. Relatable AF - Priscilla

6. Bad Idea

This one is such a bop. But also gets you thinking like damnit, why did I go down that rabbit hole and sleep with them to try and numb what I was feeling? I also really want to know who she’s talking about. -Priscilla

7. Make Up

This one truly isn’t doing it for me, but maybe it’ll grow on me? - Felicity

^Maybe not the best but make up sex sure is. - Priscilla

8. Ghostin’

Was not what I expected but I’m really for it. - Edel

^Okay, literally. The vocals and the orchestra in the background is so f*cking magical. - Felicity

This makes me want to kiss someone and then immediately dump them. - Rachel

I had to grab Kleenex for this one. Beautiful and heartbreaking. Mac Miller is all over it, and she feels bad for Pete for still having feelings for Mac. - Priscilla

9. In My Head

Who is behind the voice mail?? At first, I’m like her grandma , her brother?? Who? - Edel  

^Lmaoooooo - Rachel

I really like this one, v catchy. Also, “Boy, I invented you.” - Felicity

10. 7 Rings

This is a very good workout song. But I also v much feel the weird cultural appropriation vibes here. IDK WHAT TO DO WITH YOU ARIANA. - Rachel

11. Thank U, Next

I, like probably 85% of women between 13-30, can’t stop listening to this one. We can all use more GTFO vibes, and this is basically 100% that. - Rachel

This song is already a certified classic, get ready for this to be the #1 throwback they play at the club in 2030. - Felicity

YES TO #1 THROWBACK THEY PLAY AT THE CLUB IN 2030! I will walk out to this at my 90th birthday celebration - Danielle

12. Break Up With Your Girlfriend, I’m Bored

Not sure how I feel about break up with your girlfriend MV’s plot twist - Edel

If you’re going to have girls kiss they need to just kiss in the video. Why is it not a real kiss? Why does the girl look exactly like her? I DON’T GET IT. - Rachel

I literally couldn’t figure out who was who at one point, omg. - Felicity

It’s a video made up of very pretty people but the song is not doing anything for me like, at all. It feels like a very basic ‘90s R&B song? - Rachel

^The mystery is solved!!! - Rachel

^Is the main guy in this MV a character from Riverdale? I DON’T know how to react to that. - Felicity

YES. Charles Melton is very very beautiful and I wish his face was my face. - Rachel