Taylor Swift has been regarded for easily shifting to the zeitgeist and easily thriving in the late 2000’s pop scene. She produces infectiously catchy songs. Whether or not you believe that they are any good, they are certain to get stuck in your head. She appeals to teenage girls everywhere with several songs relating to past relationships with famous boys, including “teen heartthrob” Taylor Lautner.
Swift’s last album was “1989” (2014), one that she considers to be her first full fledged pop album, dropping her country roots entirely. Since then, she released a single along with Zayn Malik for the film “Fifty Shades Darker,” which also accumulated riveting popularity. However, there had been no news of a new album in three years. Then, her newest single titled “Look What You Made Me Do,” was released on Aug. 24 and was followed by an announcement for her sixth album, set to be released on Nov. 10.
The single aims to claim that this is a “New Taylor,” though what this means is unclear to just about everyone. The target of her lyrical slander is unknown; most guess that it is Kanye West. However, most of the lyrics have no indication as to who it could be about, similar to a song that we’ve already heard before. “I’ve got a list of names and yours is in red, underlined,” feels like a carbon copy of terminology used in “Blank Space.”
Swift, like most other pop stars, puts the focus on her vocal aptitude, which is nothing to write home about. The line for which the song is named presents a somewhat unique tempo and alternative vocal style. By the third time I heard it, I was tired of it. The entire chorus portion becomes stale after the first listen.
It seems that Swift’s theme of attempting to make catchy tunes has not changed, even though she explicitly tells us otherwise. “The old Taylor can’t come to the phone right now. Why? Because she’s dead.” This is probably the most baffling line I’ve ever heard. Not only is it completely disconnected from the rest of the song, it appears to be connected to nothing at all. The only thing that comes close to matching Swift’s edgy take on herself is the music video. It contains scenes of a graveyard, an anarchist bank robbery and an assortment of muscular men with awkwardly cut shirts, all of them emblazoned with the line “I <3 TS.”
If Swift expects me to perceive her differently, she should have actually done something, anything, differently. Instead it remains to be the repetitive malarkey that I never cared to listen to in the first place. Your reputation is assuredly dead, Taylor.