Ariana Grande drops surprise holiday EP, ‘Christmas and Chill’
Ariana Grande Invites You To Christmas & Chill On New EP.
Pop star Ariana Grande dropped a surprise, holiday-themed EP titled “Christmas and Chill” online Thursday — marking the third straight year she’s released at least one Christmas tune.Christmas came early for Ariana Grande fans — the 22-year-old released a surprise Christmas EP Thursday, titled “Christmas and Chill.” The six tracks are original holiday songs, including “Wit It This Christmas,” “December” and “Winter Things.” The singer hinted at her new music with social media posts earlier this week. The unannounced song collection features five new, original tracks from Grande — with several of them boasting especially festive names such as “Wit It This Christmas,” “December” and “Not Just One For Christmas.” Grande had teased that she could have new music on the way the past few days, and she confirmed it on Twitter on Thursday with a series of tweets to her nearly 35 million followers.
In typical Grande fashion, the holiday tunes are filled with romantic lyrics such as: “Tis the season for some loving, so I think you should give your love to me” and “Down for lovin’ you’ll be my drummer boy.” The new album comes two years after Grande dropped her first holiday EP, “Christmas Kisses,” which featured the singer covering Christmas hits such as “Santa Baby” and “Last Christmas.” The new album could be Grande’s last-ditch effort at getting on Santa’s nice list, as the singer received a wave of backlash in July after she was caught licking doughnuts and bashing America on camera at a California bakery. She also told her followers the four-song set came together in under a week and was inspired by her “babes / baes / christmas.” EARLIER: We already know Ariana Grande likes sweet treats, but she’s making it official with a Christmas EP featuring a song called “Wit It (Milk & Cookies).” According to what the pop star has teased on her Snapchat and Twitter recently, the unnamed EP will feature four songs and drops Thursday.
After endlessly teasing fans on social media, the “Focus” singer released a six-song EP on Thursday (Dec. 17) as a follow-up to her 2014 single “Santa Tell Me” and 2013’s Christmas Kisses EP. The songs feature Grande singing romantic Christmas ballads over trap beats. “Merry Christmas, here I am, boy,” she sings on the sultry “December.” “Gonna love you, gonna give you what I can, boy.” The one song to stand out from the more R&B-leaning EP is the folky “Winter Things,” which closes out the collection. Each track clocks in at no more than three minutes, but it’s immediately repeat-worthy, thanks to the sultry vibes that’ll make you want to snuggle with bae next to the fireplace. She later apologized via a YouTube video that has since been taken down, in which she expanded on her original written apology that addressed childhood obesity in the U.S.
Other than her original yuletide melodies, Grande recently released the single “Focus,” as fans await the release of her third album expected in 2016. With song lyrics like, “And whatever is on your list, I’ll do it/Boy whatever it is, you know I’ll do it” and “I’m just trying to keep my baby warm through the winter time,” The season is starting to heat up! Mad Max will roar back out of the apocalypse while Mad Men rides off into the sunset, rock’s Antichrist Superstar and hip-hop’s Yeezus will rise again. But he did show an utter commitment to the show’s silliness, and when coupled with his innate charm as a performer, led some of the night’s best sketches.
That commitment was once again on display tonight, but the material by and large felt half-formed, which stranded both host and crew for a majority of the night. Hemsworth rarely connected live onstage tonight, but he unsurprisingly did very well in this action-movie parody. “I don’t have time to bleed!” is the type of clichéd dialogue that exists in most subpar action films, and this is a sketch that teases out that notion to its logical (albeit extreme) end. It’s never not impressive how quickly SNL can throw something together with this level of complexity and production value. (The physical continuity of Hemworth’s deterioration alone is impressive.) Sasheer Zamata matches Hemsworth beat for beat as his concerned partner, serving as audience proxy for his overly-macho attitude. As someone still somewhat struggling to make herself known to SNL audience, it’s great to see her in a lead sketch role like this. “Time To Bleed” all but announces its endpoint up front, but its execution makes the ride enjoyable.
One could argue (as many within the show as well as outside of it have) that Ferrell’s original performance ended up helping Bush become more electable. But this week, rather than focus on that President’s foibles, it’s all about Bush’s contrast to the current Republican feel and just how well he favorably compares to them, even for his harshest critics. What ensues isn’t a sketch so much as a stand-up routine, and it’s one based not only on current politics but the audience’s relationship to this actor and his place in SNL history. But the overall effect was an old-school approach to political cold opens, one that felt fresh and vital and will drive a lot of discussion over the next week. Either SNL realizes that having Donald Trump as a host damaged its reputation, or the show is simply having its cake and eating it with its current criticism of him.
Some might view that as hypocritical or “too little, too late.” I’m not going to pretend I know the mindset that drove the material tonight, especially the Michael Che/Colin Jost back-and-forth about whether or not Trump actually believes the things he says. Jones’ confusion over its lack of Golden Globes nominations highlighted one of the side effects of what many call the era of Peak TV: She only knows Breaking Bad as a show she can stream online, and has no association to its existence on AMC (or, apparently, even the existence of AMC).
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