Red by Taylor Swift
As a fan of the country genre, growing up listening to the legends such as; Dolly Parton, Shania twain, Tim McGraw. It’s only natural that I would be aware of the musical stylings of the singer- songwriter, country-pop superstar Taylor Swift. Since her release of” love story” in September 2008. It became an overnight sensation; selling over 7.8 copies worldwide peaked at number four on the billboard 100. Taylor swift became one of the biggest pop crossover success stories with her debut album titled fearless being the most successful in 2009 and her following album speak now selling over one million copies in its first week of US release, wining multiple Grammy awards, four in fact, she introduced pre-tweens everywhere to the world of county music.
My journey with Swifts music happened two years after I first heard “love story “I personally didn’t care for the song or understand the hype surrounding it but I eat my own words as in retrospect I should have thanked my dear friend for showing albums like beautiful eyes, fearless and speak now that sit in pride of place alongside my green day and 30 seconds to mars collection.
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Those albums are near enough flawless and on constant repeat. “Mine” a track off speak now is lyrical genius that paints the heart-wrenching trials and tribulations of everlasting love that’s found in real world but never believed in by others.
It’s fair to say I’d become a fan of Taylor song- writing. Her lyrics where relatable to a certain extent and tells many a story that I’d actually experienced myself. When the film adaptation of Suzanne Collins dystopian novel the hunger games was released*fangirling moment*Taylor contributed with songs “safe and sound” and “eyes open”. And I was genuinely shocked; both were haunting in the best, spine-tingling way possible “safe and sound” brought tears to my eyes with such a forlorn melody and chilling vocals from the civil wars.
so when her long awaited fourth studio album was dropped named “red”-anti-climactic tittle if you ask me- her hardcore “Swifties” were not happy as its near enough full on pop-centered album was not the cowboy bootlegged, hoedown Taylor they were used to, but in all honesty I think this radical change – well not really- is vital for the evolution of Taylor swift and to ensure her survival in the music industry. To avoid this review being eight pages long ill bullet point the strengths and weakness (surprisingly enough I do have problems with this album)
Let’s start with the worst first….
. Red- not the most the imaginative title in the world, probably could have done better than just choosing a primary color for your next album
. “His love is like driving a new Maserati down a dead end street”-unless you’re super rich like Taylor you would have literally no idea how it feels to drive a hundred and ten thousand dollar sports car down an abandoned road.
. Red in general- one of my biggest pet peeves in songs is when artists use similes or metaphors in their work. There not righting an English essay or right a sonnet, so why? .Most metaphorical references used are completely idiotic and not even relevant to the subject matter their actually singing about. so when I first heard red was just one big metaphor it wanted to smash my head against the desktop/wall where ever I was at that moment because literally every single line was a metaphor/simile.” His love is like trying to find solve a crossword puzzle when there’s no right answer” what!? Seriously what has your love of word-related games got to do with your relationship and who writes a crossword puzzle without a definitive correct answer argh blasphemy!
. We are never ever getting back together- really Taylor? I never ever wanted to listen to your music again after hearing this three minute long rant about your ex. Jake Gyllenhaal heard the song enough times and im pretty sure he doesn’t care, elongating your vowels is giving both of us a headache also a accidentally recorded conversation is not a basis for a song neither is the phrase “never say never”.
. I knew you were trouble- I can’t deny its catchy but the autotune and -im not going to say it’s dubstep because it’s not- the SLIGHT dance/dupstep element is different form her usual protocol but doesn’t work with Taylor’s high pitched voice and make her sound like she trying too hard and the repetitive use of the word “trouble” does not make up for actual lyrics *side note* if you’ve seen the music video to this song its borderline hilarious, the “edgy” look doesn’t agree with her.
. “This was a masterpiece till you torn it all apart”- it’s a little judgmental don’t you think?
.”told me about my past, thinking your future was me”- wow that’s one way to break up with a guy get his ultimate trust then dump him when he tells you all his secrets and wants to have a minivan of children with you.
“I’ll follow you, follow you home”- if that doesn’t say stalker I don’t know what does
You’ve redeemed yourself yay!…
. State of grace- this is one of my absolute favorite tracks on the album. Just listening to it is a delight to my ears. it transports me to the bustling streets of the vivid and restless New York (don’t know why just does) it has influences of rock bond u2, with the electric guitar undertones and angelic backing vocals which make it magic and lines like ” just twin fire signs, four blue eyes” make it all round perfection.*side note*acoustic version of state of grace is quiet enchanting
. Lucky one- Im a lucky one to hear this musical excellence, it has the same inde/rock vibe to this track as well making it refreshing to hear, something else that is refreshing to hear is that it not about a failed romance -thank the lord- I really appreciate the message in this one than any of the others in this album. it’s about fear of not being satisfied with the things you already have achieved in so far it ruins the joy of living and turn simple, wonderful things into hard work because it a game of staying relevant enough to be important afraid of being replaced with younger, better version of ourselves.
.”So casually cruel in the name of being honest”- A concept I can relate to two points for Taylor
.Treacherous- I can’t fault the melody its seductive but pure, its slow but not drown your sorrows depressing the use of a single, acoustic guitar to build up to a full entourage of drum beats is fantastic.
.Everything has changed- ED SHEEREN!! Yes the wonderful and talented fiery-haired Londoner Ed Sheeren co-wrote with Taylor on this track to produce legitimate candy for your ears. The drums build up the choruses paired fluently with the breaks of the guitar solos in-between accompanied only Ed’s and Taylor’s super-sweet vocals creating a heavenly, musical power duo in the making.
.The last time- Gary Lightbody and Taylor swift’s duet is the definition of complimentary. Lightbody is a fantastic choice for a duet partner as it enhances Taylor’s vocals and brings a more soulful and mature side to her tone. “The last time “paints an almost palpable picture of a young man and woman insanely in love with each other only separated by the door that prevents them from their own destruction, told through the harrowing backing of the piano.
Red has sold over 4 million copies worldwide and i greatly hope that its success continues. I’ve been following swift’s music for a number of years now and even though it’s changed to accommodate a more mainstream audience. Taylor still has the uncanny ability to tell a story though her lyrics that makes you’ll believe “one day I’ll be living in a big old city” and im destined do something bigger than “date the guy on the football team” Taylor swift is the calorie- free remedy for a broken heart or low self –esteem for young girls around the globe and im glad to say im one of them.