Written by Brittany Shawnté
I haven't done a real music review in a really long time! I figure the amount of music that comes out and that I get through email, I should do that more often. Therefore, I'm starting back up again with an album that I personally have been waiting a while for--Ariana Grande's My Everything!
Released August 25, 2014, My Everything is Ariana's sophomore album, and she doesn't disappoint! Her first album, Yours Truly, was a good introduction, and a lot of great pop songs and even a few 50s doo-wop tracks, that really showcased Ariana's talent as a singer. However, it's clear with My Everything, Ariana has grown up and really taken the reins on her musical choices.
Read my review of Ariana's new album below!
"I'll give you all I have, and nothing less I promise..." My Everything starts out with a beautiful, melodic Intro from Ariana to her listenerss, promising that if they go along with her for the ride, she's going to give them her everything!
"Head in the clouds, got no weight on my shoulders..." "Problem" was Ariana's first official single, featuring rapper Iggy Azalea, and the track has literally taken over the summer. And for good reason. The catchy hook and upbeat tempo, along with its feminist approach ("I got one less problem without you boy!") made it perfect for listeners, specifically females, to connect to! Ariana and Iggy speak on how they finally learned their lesson with ex loves and let them go, and now they ain't go no worries, no problems!
"And I know, and I know, and I know that you got everything...but I got nothing here without you." We begin to see Ariana's growth and experimentation with the electronic track "One Last Time." As she sings about getting one last chance with her ex, the track will have you dancing and possibly in your feelings at the same time.
"You and I redefine being love sick, love sick, love sick...through it all you could still make my heart skip, heart skip." As I listened to "Why Try" reminds me of a lighter, friendlier version of Eminem & Rihanna's "I Love The Way You Lie," with the same concept: an unhealthy relationship that you can't bear to leave, because through everything, the love is still there.
"I only want to die alive, never by the hands of a broken heart. I don't wanna hear you lie tonight now that I've become who I really am." Ariana continues to break away from her standard pop and R&B roots with "Break Free." The official second single of the album, which features work from Russian-German producer Zedd, is all electropop, EDM music. It's not my favorite on the album, but sometimes it takes me a while to warm up to a song. It's perfect for the club, though!
"Break up, make up, total waste of time....Can we please make up our minds? And stop acting like we’re blind? "Best Mistake" featuring rapper and Ariana's supposed new boyfriend Big Sean is easily one of the best tracks on the record. The third official sing features Ariana's smooth vocals lamenting over her current situation with her man. Clearly, they're drifting away from each other, but still love each other, and really need to come to a decision with what they want to do with their relationship. To be honest, part of me would rather hear the song without Sean's verse, but after repeating it enough times, I love the song so much that I just go with the flow.
"If you know how to be my lover, maybe you can be my baby. Hold me close under the covers...kiss me boy and drive me crazy." The mid-tempo, fun track "Be My Baby" featuringCashmere Cat is the track that reminds me very much of Mariah Carey (the comparisons will always be there!). It's about looking for that special someone. If you know how to treat me right, then you can be the one for m e. I can see the teenyboppers singing this to the top of their lungs at her concert!
"You said I was your best, would be your last. Now he's gone, you're alone, don't want you back.""Break Your Heart Right Back" takes an interesting turn on the album. While in love with her boyfriend, Ariana sings of finding out that her boyfriend wanted someone else....another guy! However, the other guy ended up leaving him, and Ariana refuses to take him back, for good reason! She wants him to feel exactly how she felt when he left her. The track, featuring Childish Gambino, samples "I'm Coming Out" by Diana Ross...pretty appropriate I guess!
"So what if I can't figure it out? (You got to try, try, try again) So what if I can't figure it out? (I'm gonna leave, leave, leave)." The next track, "Love Me Harder" with The Weeknd, is probably one of my favorites on the album. Ariana and Weeknd sing of a typical relationship problem: one party isn't giving enough in the relationship, and the other I've never heard The Weeknd on this upbeat a track (it's mid-tempo, but I'm used to slow ballads from him). Their voices together are so great on this track!
"Just a little bit of your heart is all I'm asking for..." On the power ballad of the album, "Just a Little Bit Of Your Heart," Ariana sings emotionally about knowing that she's not the only one that her man spends time with, but she would rather have a little love than none at all. It's not necessarily my situation, but I still liked the song.
"Eyes on me, dance on me tonight...You're all, all on me. Keep your hands on me.." "Hands on Me" featuring ASAP Ferg is an upbeat track that you could play in the club or before you get ready, but very basic. The entire song is "Put your hands on it, put your hands on it," quite literally....that's the hook. For me, it's a miss, but I might warm up to it later.
"You were my everything 'til we were nothing. And it’s taken me a lot to say...Now that you’re gone, my heart is missing something..."The album ends beautifully with "My Everything," an emotional ballad that reflects Ariana's regret in a failed relationship. She still wants her ex, and she feels empty without him. My only wish is that the song was a little bit longer! It was an emotional way to end the standard album, but I loved it!
Bonus tracks on the deluxe version that I have are "Bang Bang" with Jessie J and Nicki Minaj, which is a SMASH HIT, and currently one of my favorite songs to drive and work out to! The deluxe version also includes "Only 1" and "You Don't Know Me," both two great tracks!
I really love this album! Yours Truly did a great job of introducing Ariana outside of her Nickelodeon roots, and as a viable singer. However, with My Everything, Ariana has shown just how much she has grown in the past year. Many still see her as a little girl, but she is 21! She's a really, really cute 21 year old, but a 21 year old none the less. She explored more mature themes with this album, and developed a really great album, which has gone #1 in 80 countries!
★★★★ 1/2 (Four and a half stars)
Go pick up your copy of My Everything now!