Taylor Swift released her fifth album, the musical masterpiece known as “1989,” Monday. As an avid Taylor Swift fan, my first response to the album was tears. No fan of Taylor Swift is used to hearing her singing with Auto Tune to a full-on pop song with all the bells and whistles. It’s no secret I prefer her voice raw with just an acoustic guitar in the background. So my immediate response was, “this is not Taylor.”
As I gave the album a second listen, I started hearing the words apart from just the music and there she was. Taylor’s most endearing quality is her way of turning her feelings into a song. For a second, I thought that the Taylor I listened to for the past seven years was gone, but she was there all along.
This album is the perfect combination of every single one of Taylor’s other albums. It has the sincerity of “Taylor Swift,” the romance of “Fearless,” the excitement of “Speak Now,” and the heartbreak of “Red,” all put into one album. “1989” has everything that “Red” lacked. An interesting fact about Taylor’s albums is that she always includes secret messages in the album booklet that let the fans know who the songs are about. In “1989” by deciphering the messages you learn that the tracks are in order and tell the story of a love affair gone wrong.
The opening track “Welcome to New York” is an dance track about moving to New York and being afraid and excited at the same time. Though, some of the lyrics are a bit cheesy and dramatic, they do not take away from the quality of the song.
I was surprised by the track “Blank Space.” I always say nobody makes fun of Taylor Swift like Taylor Swift, and in this track she proves it.
Although, “Bad Blood” is a decent track on the album, to me it was the biggest disappointment. I expected Taylor to tear Katy Perry, who is the supposed subject of the song, apart. This didn’t happen, but the chorus of chants is catchy anyway.
The absolute shining stars of the album are the tracks “Wildest Dreams” and “Clean.” The first time I listened to “Wildest Dreams” my immediate thought was that it was a Lana Del Ray song, not a Taylor Swift song. “Wildest Dreams” is definitely Taylor’s most risque song to date, but also one of the greatest she has ever released.
“Clean” is my other favorite. This is a much different side of Taylor than fans have heard before. The idea of the song is finally being clean from an addictive relationship and being able to move forward without looking back. The beat of the song is just therapeutic and sends a good message.
“All You Had To Do Was Stay” is a song I would’ve preferred as a ballad. The lyrics are beautiful and sad, but get lost in the noise in the music in the background. Taylor has always been known for her ballads and this would have been another perfect one to add to the list.
The only ballad on the album is called “This Love.” It does a nice job of holding its own among the loud pop and dance tracks that are the rest of the album. It is definitely one of the most emotional tracks on the album.
Taylor described “Style” by saying she should have just called it “I’m not even sorry.” I will not name names myself but by listening to this track it is easy to see exactly who the muse of the album is. “Style” is one of the most upbeat and impressive of the album. She uses her lyrics to paint a beautiful image of a relationship that to her “never goes out of style.”
Overall, I would describe “1989” as Taylor’s best work to date. She encompasses everything a pop star should have and more. This step into the pop world is going to bring bright and beautiful things for Taylor and I have never been more proud to call myself a fan.
Story by Breanna Sill, Assistant Features Editor