Tuesday, September 3, 2019

ALBUM REVIEW: Lover - Taylor Swift

I'm gonna hit y'all with some honesty real quick. I REALLY wanted to hate this album. Considering Reputation never really clicked with me, I wasn't too excited for another Taylor Swift album. I didn't even wanna listen to the first single, ME!, but I gave it a listen because Brendon Urie, one of my favorite frontmen in the game right now, was featured on it. 

The song made me do a 180 almost immediately. The catchy hook and chorus, amazing production, the fun, childlike spelling bridge, I was hooked. The next single, You Need to Calm Down, was equally as good but it took a while for it to grow on me. The harmonies in the chorus, the quirky beat, Taylor's vocal performance, and the silly, but appropriate lyrics were all stellar. 

The next two singles, The Archer and the title track, Lover, were equally as amazing. Both songs include production credits from Jack Antonoff, who co-wrote and co-produced most of this album, which might explain my love for these two songs. The Archer has a slow build up to this beautiful sort of crescendo with a drum beat muffled in the background which works in perfectly. Lover, however, sounds like it could've been on one of her country albums. An acoustic guitar complemented by Taylor's reverbed voice and yet another harmonized chorus make this song sound like it'll be in the background of every wedding video for the next year. 

Now into the actual album itself. It surpassed any expectations I had. It's probably one of the most solid pop albums I've listened to all year. The production, writing, and Taylor's performances on this album are incredible. It sucks that this album came out at the beginning of the fall because Cruel Summer DEFINITELY would've been the song of the summer. It was co-written with Annie Clark, of St. Vincent fame, and Antonoff and their influence on this song is what makes me love it. The chorus on this thing is PURE Annie and Jack's production gives this song a magic touch. 

However, I have two major issues with this album. One is on par with the state of music today, the other is just a personal issue.

My first issue is that this album is another example of quantity > quality. It's the same thing that's killed Vampire Weekend and Chance the Rapper this year. I say this because the first 11 songs are the greatest stretch of pop music I've heard this year. If she would've kept these 11 songs and added in the singles, I would probably give this album an 8 or a 9, but because of the filler stacked onto the end, I can't stick to that score.

My other main issue is also my favorite part of this album. The choruses. Every song goes from meh verses to these giant, explosive choruses that transport you to another dimension. However, the pattern becomes so repetitive as the album goes on and it doesn't feel as cool on track 14 as it does on track 2.

In the end, I really enjoyed this album. Everything Jack Antonoff touches turns to gold and his production and writing on this thing really help it shine. But the ever living trend of quantity > quality has taken yet another victim.

I would rate
By Taylor Swift

Taylor has yet to announce any touring plans this year, but this will be updated as soon as she announces dates and on-sale times.

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