El Gato Recommends: Positions, Wonder, and Oliver Tree

Ariana Grande’s Positions

by Jenna Roselli

Center Editor

After rocking the world with her Positions music video, Araina Grande released her sixth album, Positions, on Oct. 30. As of Nov. 4, her pre-album single, Positions, remains number one on Billboard’s top 100 chart. Other standouts of the album include her collaborations with Doja Cat in her song “Motive” and with The Weekend on “off the table.” Her latest accomplishments follow her later album, thank u, next, which was released after living through her ex-boyfriend Mac Miller’s overdose, her split from then-fiancé Pete Davidson, and the terrorist attack at her concert in Manchester. The Positions album could have not come at a better time while people heal and prepare for a third wave of COVID-19. Grande’s album represents a portfolio of music that builds on the theme that pain is an unavoidable part of life and in light of this realization, people deserve to experience happiness and love to balance loss.

Shawn Mendes’ “Wonder”

by Sonali Muthukrishnan

National/World Editor

On Oct. 2, Shawn Mendes released Wonder, the lead single and title song for his forthcoming album. Wonder sets a clear, mature tone for Mendes’ next collection. The song showcases a raw, free sound. Mendes reveals his inner thoughts, displays uncertainty, and confronts toxic masculinity with the lyrics, “I wonder, when I cry into my hands I’m conditioned to feel like it makes me less of a man.” The singer’s vocals are artful, talented, and smooth, making him a pleasure to listen to. The accompanying music video depicts Mendes in nature, eliciting positive and pure feelings for his audience. Overall, Mendes’ relatable and introspective lead single leaves fans anticipating his album release on Dec. 4.

(Source: Variety)

Oliver Tree’s Ugly is Beautiful

by Alia Arafeh

Editorial Editor

Alternative artist Oliver Tree released his newest album titled Ugly is Beautiful Jul. 17, 2020. The album features raw, upbeat music perfect for inspiration, motivation, or just pure fun. Ugly is Beautiful truly has no skips with each song featuring its own individual message. My personal favorite, Bury Me Alive, even includes rapping verses. Another song from the album, entitled Hurt, peaked at #4 on the Alternative chart in Billboard Magazine, but I consider it a #1 hit. If you’re looking to explore a new artist or need loud, fast-paced music for some motivation, I highly recommend checking out Ugly is Beautiful.

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