Rachel Bache is an entertainment writer for the New Zealand Herald.

Album review: Ariana Grande, Dangerous Woman

Ariana Grande. Photo / Supplied
Ariana Grande. Photo / Supplied

It would be easy to write off Ariana Grande. She's been labelled time and again as a diva and her work comes across as mildly irritating pop.

But her new album, Dangerous Women, is a step up with its gritty, R&B sound with a dance-pop twist.

Teaming up with music producers Max Martin and Savan Kotecha, Grande has drawn elements of house and reggae into her catchy tracks and her powerful vocals fit seamlessly into the genres.

The album features Nicki Minaj, Lil Wayne and Future on various tracks. Leave Me Lonely, featuring Macy Gray, feels like an odd mix at first, but Gray's grainy voice ends up working well for the R&B ballad.

The title track is the crown jewel of the record, but it's far from being all that's good on Dangerous Woman.

Be Alright and Moonlight hit in the right places for very different reasons, while Into You, Side To Side and Everyday show off a grittier side.

Knew Better / Forever Boy brings in bassy, down-tempo sounds that become a dance-driven house vibe, followed up nicely by Thinking Bout You, ending the album on a high note.

Artist: Ariana Grande
Album: Dangerous Woman
Verdict: Popstar's dangerous side is also her best

- TimeOut

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