Ariana and the Rose – ‘You Were Never My Boyfriend’
Review by Matt Wong & Staff
An artist who embraces an audio-visual approach to creativity, Ariana and the Rose (Ariana DiLorenzo) writes, sings and performs a coming of age story. Her honest synth driven songs have accumulated over 7 million streams, her vivid experiential music videos have been viewed over 3 million times and she has toured extensively in both the US and the UK, bringing a unique brand of performance that transcends the traditional boundaries of a concert. The New York based artist released the Constellations Phase 1 EP this past July, exploring themes of love from the perspective of self-acceptance and empowerment. The EP saw massive support from streaming platforms landing on Spotify’s New Music Fridays in UK + Sweden, New Pop Revolution, Brand New Chill, Popjustice, Out Now and Apple Music’s Breaking Pop playlist in 21 countries as well as premiers on the Chart Show. “Constellations” also received press love from Billboard, Paper Mag, Earmilk, the Independent and many more. She is slated to head out on a 20 date tour supporting Torres (Merge Records) this fall as well as release Constellations Phase 2.
“You Were Never My Boyfriend” begins with arpeggiated synth and comping. Ariana’s hypnotic vocal enters on the first verse along with the beat and bass. In the pre-chorus, the arrangement brings in short melodic ideas sprinkled in between vocal phrases to develop the song towards the chorus. However, just as listeners expect a huge drop into the song’s chorus, the song does a 180 on the listener and falls back in dynamics by removing the kick drum, and nicely contrasts what listeners had already heard while keeping the groove moving.
The second verse brings back the kick, but also introduces a hi-hat part which adds the motion that listeners may have previously yearned for in the song. New pieces of ear candy are added throughout the verse and following chorus before the song goes into a hard hitting instrumental section with a four to the floor kick and lots of energy. The song’s bridge then scales back in dynamics and instrumentation before returning to full throttle on the last chorus.
The lyrics in “You Were Never My Boyfriend” are a representation of the current state of dating, and how people can spend so much time with each other, but have little connection. Ariana paints a picture of this with lyrics such as “Spent a couple months sleeping side by side and it all ended with a kiss goodbye” and “I stuck it out through some stormy weather but you can’t seem to get your shit together.”
“You Were Never My Boyfriend” is a piece of music with an A-level performance and well thought out production. The song’s strong groove and interesting bits of ear candy are a solid foundation and platform for Ariana’s top notch vocals. Listener’s will fall in love with Ariana’s vocal talent, and connect deeply with the song’s music and lyrics.