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The Positions Era feels so meh

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2 hours ago, Strobo said:

Wait what do you think it is because it most definitely is Blackout. The acclaim didn't lie!


OT: Ariana has been lazy musically since tu,n in my opinion. Like she's obviously talented and there's good songs in there but it feels very much like the stereotype people have for pop music as a genre. Shitty fast food meant to be easy and accessible. Not... good. tu,n gets praise because it's personal sure, but let's not act like sonically it's anything interesting or groundbreaking. Positions continues the same.

I don't hate her she's just become very overrated very quickly for releasing music she's definitely capable of doing better.

Acclaim doesn't mean best jj4

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1 minute ago, Chris Morlock said:

Acclaim doesn't mean best jj4

Not saying it automatically means best, I'm just saying I agree with it this time. Blackout feels like her most accomplished work (ITZ following)

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46 minutes ago, Chris Morlock said:

Acclaim doesn't mean best jj4

Exactly. Critics opinions are far too overrated. They very often have particular preferences and will trash albums based on the person rather than the music. 

 

Caution is Mariah's most critically acclaimed album. It's a good body of work, but under that logic it's her best?.... I think not. 

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Just now, Strobo said:

Not saying it automatically means best, I'm just saying I agree with it this time. Blackout feels like her most accomplished work (ITZ following)

Barney Joan jokes aside ITZ is her best imo. Some of the production on Blackout feels more dated. 

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13 hours ago, Strobo said:

Wait what do you think it is because it most definitely is Blackout. The acclaim didn't lie!
 

Okay I have a lot to say on this so I'm gonna spoiler it bc I know most people won't care KLJBKHLNK

Spoiler

In the Zone is right there for Britney's best album. Don't get me wrong I enjoy Blackout and it is an influential record in terms of what it pushed the door open for for the sounds of the decade to follow. That being said...when it's removed from the context of it's release I just don't think it has much to stand on. She feels so distant from it in a way that's not really present on any other album in her discography sans possibly Circus. I know, like we all do, what was going on at the time and the reason for that distance makes sense, but it doesn't really change the listening experience for me. The production, as influential as it was, isn't all that solid either. I'm not necessarily talking about the instrumentation, just the general sound of the album feels off. It's overly sanitized and glossy and because of some really unique instrumentals sound toothless and mechanic. And as for the song selection, it has an amazing first half (Gimme More to Freakshow) but then completely loses it's momentum from that point forward. It's a perfectly good album, but I don't really consider it more than just good. For the conditions it was made under I give it and her producers props for being able to hand down as many classics as they did, but once that aforementioned front half concludes, there's just not left in it's wake. I think it's retroactive reappraisal by critics is somewhat warranted as it's influence became much more clear as time went on, but I also can't help but feel as if it's been more motivated by how poorly received it was at the time (it stands as her third worst reviewed album on MC with a 61/100, just barely a green score, only behind Britney Jean which has a 50 and Britney which has a 58), what it made happen in music, and the things we learned about what she was going through at the time after the fact rather than the music itself actually having been extremely misjudged. As controversial as it is to say Blackout isn't even in my top 4 of her discography. 

 

OT: The whole Positions era has been Ariana on autopilot. The visuals, the music, all of it has been her going through the motions lowkey. And on the one hand I get it, she's been going non-stop and she's gotten herself to a point where she doesn't really need to do that much work in order to reap benefits. But, I also think that's a sign she needs to slow down. A good break needs to come, she's starting to really hit a creative wall. sweetener, tun, and positions all came in a ridiculously short window and throw in the massive promo campaigns and world tour for the former two then it's pretty evident she's a bit spent. I think she should take some time away and allow herself to recharge and come back with something totally different. Stagnation isn't a cute look on her, especially when we all know she can, and has, done better. 

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15 hours ago, Strobo said:

Wait what do you think it is because it most definitely is Blackout. The acclaim didn't lie!

Ummm... In the Zone obviously. Not only is it her personal favorite, it’s also the album she was most involved in and it’s by far her most iconic era.

That said, the quality of the music on that album exceed that of Blackout by a landslide.

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2 hours ago, Mr. Mendes said:

Okay I have a lot to say on this so I'm gonna spoiler it bc I know most people won't care KLJBKHLNK

  Reveal hidden contents

In the Zone is right there for Britney's best album. Don't get me wrong I enjoy Blackout and it is an influential record in terms of what it pushed the door open for for the sounds of the decade to follow. That being said...when it's removed from the context of it's release I just don't think it has much to stand on. She feels so distant from it in a way that's not really present on any other album in her discography sans possibly Circus. I know, like we all do, what was going on at the time and the reason for that distance makes sense, but it doesn't really change the listening experience for me. The production, as influential as it was, isn't all that solid either. I'm not necessarily talking about the instrumentation, just the general sound of the album feels off. It's overly sanitized and glossy and because of some really unique instrumentals sound toothless and mechanic. And as for the song selection, it has an amazing first half (Gimme More to Freakshow) but then completely loses it's momentum from that point forward. It's a perfectly good album, but I don't really consider it more than just good. For the conditions it was made under I give it and her producers props for being able to hand down as many classics as they did, but once that aforementioned front half concludes, there's just not left in it's wake. I think it's retroactive reappraisal by critics is somewhat warranted as it's influence became much more clear as time went on, but I also can't help but feel as if it's been more motivated by how poorly received it was at the time (it stands as her third worst reviewed album on MC with a 61/100, just barely a green score, only behind Britney Jean which has a 50 and Britney which has a 58), what it made happen in music, and the things we learned about what she was going through at the time after the fact rather than the music itself actually having been extremely misjudged. As controversial as it is to say Blackout isn't even in my top 4 of her discography. 

 

OT: The whole Positions era has been Ariana on autopilot. The visuals, the music, all of it has been her going through the motions lowkey. And on the one hand I get it, she's been going non-stop and she's gotten herself to a point where she doesn't really need to do that much work in order to reap benefits. But, I also think that's a sign she needs to slow down. A good break needs to come, she's starting to really hit a creative wall. sweetener, tun, and positions all came in a ridiculously short window and throw in the massive promo campaigns and world tour for the former two then it's pretty evident she's a bit spent. I think she should take some time away and allow herself to recharge and come back with something totally different. Stagnation isn't a cute look on her, especially when we all know she can, and has, done better. 

Spoiler

I can agree with nearly everything you've said now that I think about it. But I think my opinion on Blackout is a holdover from my first listens to her albums?

When I was first going through Britney's discography, Blackout was the only one that stuck to me immediately, partially due to already hearing a good portion of it before and being a fan of Timbaland's crew. For me what makes this album "her best" simply has to do with the fact that I felt a lot of her other albums are very inconsistent?

And imo, it was at it's most inconsistent with In The Zone which has some career highlights (Toxic, Breathe on Me, Everytime, Touch of My Hand), it also has some really questionable try hard urban tracks on it that don't suit her (I Got That Boom Boom, Outrageous). Blackout has some career highlights on it as well, but I don't think it gets nearly as questionable.

In a way, the first time I listened to ITZ disappointed me because it was just all over the place, while Blackout felt focused . ITZ in a lot of ways felt like she was still trying to prove she wasn't a bubblegum pop princess like she did with the previous album. Blackout on the other hand felt like, well, grown Britney making a grown party album with a healthy dose of tongue in cheek taunts at the media. I feel like if she wasn't going through as much as she was at the time, the whole era would've been fondly remembered instead of being... yeah.
.
That said, ITZ does feel a lot more authentically Britney compared to Blackout and that's something I've really come to appreciate on repeated revisits where the album as a whole has grown on me.

Spoiler tl dr: I think Blackout > ITZ because it's more consistently strong, despite ITZ having some of the best tracks she's ever made.

 

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The way you guys changed direction to talk about Britney instead. Her relevance! Her potency! IT'S BRITNEY BEEP!!!! YOU BETTA WORK MYAH!!!!!!!! scream2

Anyway...the Positions era does feel very meh because she hasn't promoted the album with explicitly musical promotions. I mean like performances. She didn't perform as often as, say, Dua, or even Demi right now. Has she performed at the Jimmy Fallon show? Or Kimmel? Or Ellen? Maybe I missed it, so correct me if I'm wrong. There's also the fact that the album doesn't give a way for her to be creative with it in a live set-up. It's very much an album that was created to be listened in an intimate space, like a bedroom, and most importantly to be listened best by using a headset/headphones/earpieces.

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Ari wants to be those rappers that release thoughtless junk every year for some reason. Only reason Sweetener/TuN worked is cause she took a break and had lived an experience she can express in an album. 
 

Positions has nothing. It sounds so uninspired and bland and ugh...

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It’s a bland album with bland visuals and nothing that sets it apart. As an era it feels uneventful compared to the past eras. She’s past her short lived prime. brit7

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when we look back 20 yrs from now this era is gonna be a blip... ironically some of her best songs which are on this album are being straight up ignored for mediocricy such as that 34,35,36,37,38.. song and unfished garage band demos being passed off as  "deluxe songs". Hopefullly now that 31-31's momentum has passed we can go to better singles. Also its obv Scooter made her do this album when they coulv'e milked thank u next for 4 more singles 

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You really devalue Blackout the way you keep comparing other (not even remotely similar) albums to it 

I can't be the only person that think positions feels so average. Not the music, it's just fine in my eyes (it could've been a lot worse). I'm referring to how Ariana is handling the era. She released

This is what happens when you get so big that you don't even need promotions cause the songs chart anyway. She doesn't need to do promo cuz she has a huge fanbase.  Two Lips has to do so much pro


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