After months of anticipation, Ariana Grande dropped her new album thank u, next Friday and her fans can barely contain their excitement.
It’s the fifth album for the singer and arrives just six months after the highly-successful Sweetener. According to Billboard, it took her just a week to write the album and two weeks to record it after a series of personal tragedies left her wanting to channel her pain into art.
While promoting Sweetener, her ex-boyfriend Mac Miller died of an apparent overdose and just weeks later, her engagement to Pete Davidson came to an end. Both of these moments, fresh on the heels of a deadly terror attack at her concert in 2017 that left 23 of her fans dead, inspired her creativity, as tragic as they were.
“This [album’s] not particularly uplifting,” Grande told Billboard of thank u, next. “A lot of it sounds really upbeat, but it’s actually a super sad chapter.”
Still, despite her personal struggles, she found she was inspired to truly open up to her fans and not let her fears or insecurities get in the way.
“My dream has always been to be — obviously not a rapper, but, like, to put out music in the way that a rapper does,” she said. “I feel like there are certain standards that pop women are held to that men aren’t. … It’s just like, ‘Bruh, I just want to f*cking talk to my fans and sing and write music and drop it the way these boys do. Why do they get to make records like that and I don’t?’ So I do and I did and I am, and I will continue to.”
And her fans are certainly thrilled with the results. Below are just a few responses to the album so far:
According to Hollywood Life, fans have even more of a reason to get excited, as Ariana is reportedly planning to head out on tour.
The release of thank u, next follows a busy week for the star, who revealed she will neither be attending nor performing at the GRAMMYS Sunday, despite being nominated for two awards. According to her tweets Thursday, the decision to cancel was based on producers’ trying to stifle her creatively. She even went so far as to defend herself against reports that it was a timing issue, calling out GRAMMYS producer Ken Ehrlich for “lying” on her.
And if all that wasn’t enough, she also dropped a new video Friday for “break up with your girlfriend, i’m bored,” one of the tracks on thank u, next. Check out the video below.