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Taylor Swift: Midnights Review

Global superstar Taylor Swift released her highly anticipated tenth studio album Midnights last week.

The album features 13 tracks, mainly co-written with Jack Antonoff, who has worked with Swift several times before, but in a ‘chaotic’ 3 am surprise, the popstar released an expanded version titled Midnights (3 am Edition).

The 3 am edition features seven new tracks, described as the other songs that were written on the journey to find the magical 13 that feature on the original album. 

The album has a mature synthy pop sound, reminiscent of 1989, Reputation and Lover but with a hint of the storytelling of whimsical Folkore, which was surprise-released during the pandemic. 

The album has already broken records, becoming the most streamed album in a single day in Spotify history with Taylor herself becoming the most streamed artist in a single day.

Midnights truly feels like a culmination of deep, dark, unhinged midnight thoughts, like a bus journey home alone after a night out, where the rain on the windows is making the city lights blur and you start to reflect on every moment of your life. 

There is a web of themes dealt with throughout the album, and in videos leading up to the release of the record, Swift told fans that the five themes that inspired Midnights were self-loathing, fantasizing about revenge, wondering what might have been, falling in love and falling apart. 

After months of speculations of what genre the album would be and no singles, track one, titled Lavender Haze hallmarks the album as one that promises to be filled with the pop hits that Swift has been so praised for throughout her career. 

The song, amongst others on the album, deals with themes of gender stereotypes and the bizarre rumors and pressure faced by Swift when it comes to her relationship with Conversations with friends actor, Joe Alwyn, with the lyrics ‘I just wanna stay in that lavender haze, all they keep asking me, is if I’m going to be your bride, the only kind of girl they see, is a one night or a wife.’

On Friday the music video for, track three, Anti-Hero was released. 

It portrays an array of nightmare dream sequences that detail, as described in a ‘behind the song’ video, some of Swift’s deepest insecurities. 

Some of the other most notable songs on the album include, Mastermind, Midnight Rain and Maroon, all of which would not have been amiss on any of Swift’s previous pop albums.

Perhaps the song that feels the most reminiscent of Reputation, is track eight, Vigilante S**t, which certainly ties into the theme of ‘fantasizing about revenge’ and could easily be interpreted as being about Scooter Braun or Kanye West, two men that Swift has had long-standing, public feuds with. 

Braun, sold all of Swift’s masters in 2020, which has led to the rerecording of all of her albums prior to Lover

West, amongst other things, famously interrupted Swift’s acceptance speech at the Video Music Awards in 2009 and the two have had a fraught relationship ever since. 

Vengeful Taylor always leads to a scathing but iconic hit and this song is no different. 

Track 5, Snow on the Beach, featuring Lana Del Rey, a long-awaited collaboration, whilst lyrically beautiful, is disappointing due to its distinct lack of Del Rey.

The Summer Time Sadness singer features more as quiet backing vocals, rather than the collaboration that had been hoped for. 

Featured Image Credit: Eva Rinaldi

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