reputation: track by track - first impressions
1. …Ready For It?
This is just the perfect album opener and perfect tour opener, of all the songs released before November 10th this was my favourite. The production is perfect, lyrics clever and rippled with meaning, made all the better by the beautiful music video. This is also a great opener because I can promise you, you are not ready for what is to come.
Favourite lyrics: ‘every love I’ve known in comparison a failure’
2. End Game (feat. Ed Sheeran & Future)
I was so excited for this when I first heard rumours or a Ed Sheeran collab. Sadly I find it quite underwhelming. It doesn’t feel like an organic collaboration to me, futures rap break feels forced and unnecessary and Ed doesn’t really feature that much… it’s catchy as all hell though and while overall I’m not obsessed with the song, Taylor’s Verse towards the end is the best, which is ironic.
Favourite lyrics: I swear I don’t love the drama, it loves me
3. I Did Something Bad
This particular bop has me lit as well as shook. I mean….THE LYRICS!!!!! This is by far my favourite song on the album. She did not come to fucking play and I am here for it. Here, taylor reclaims her ‘mistakes’ and lets the world know she’d do it all over (and over and over) again (so fuck you) Part of me feels like this would have served as a better lead single than LWYMMD… catch me in the club begging the dj to play this.
Favourite lyrics: ‘If a man talks shit then I owe him nothing, I don’t regret it one bit ‘cos he had it coming’
4. Don’t Blame Me
This isn’t what I thought it would be and I’m OBSESSED. The one-two punch that is IDSB and then this, is a knockout. The album could end here and I’d shower it in Grammys. Her vocals here are the best on the album. The lyrics are so self aware and SHARP. The balance of emotions amazes me… this is angry and sexy and cute and young yet mature and thoughtful… The message is clear as-well. Taylor is ruled by her emotions like every normal human being, so you can’t really blame her. This isn’t victimhood, it’s a beg to let her live her goddamn life.
Favourite lyrics: ‘lord save me, my drug is my baby, I’ll be using it the rest of my life’
TRACK 5!!! You can just tell by the title that this song will ruin you (and it will). I love the concept of this song. It’s the sonic representation of cute and DELICATE and I think that the Imogen heap style production is the perfect match to the lyrics. This is at the point where everyone was against her.. her ‘reputation’ had ‘never been worse’ but she finds herself enchanted by him, despite the delicate situation she’s going to go for it and ask him if it’s ‘chill’ that she likes him’. What a cute smol bean GAHHHANWJSUS FEELS
Favourite lyrics: ‘my reputation’s never been worse so you must like me for me’
6. Look What You Made Me Do
I always have a weird relationship with Taylor’s lead singles, somehow I feel like they usually don’t fit into the album and certainly don’t serve as a symbol of the album as a whole. Maybe that’s just me? I love this song like I love every trashy pop song, it’s fun and catchy and I do think it’s incredibly clever (and gave us the best music video in the history of music videos) but I’m not sure how well this song will stand the test of time. For me, it joins shake it off and WANEGBT in the ‘great but easily skippable’ category.
Favourite Lyrics: ‘CAUSE SHES DEAD’
7. So It Goes…
Ahhhhh… I thought that the ‘…’ meant this would be a continuation of sorts from RFI or perhaps a bookmark at the middle point of the album to signify a turning point. If that is the intention then I’m afraid I don’t see it. The lyrics are good and I understand that it’s about feeling like things are finally ‘falling into place’, but other than that I don’t really understand the song… that’s not to say I think it’s a bad song, but I don’t feel like it contributes much to the album - it feels a bit same-y and unnecessary- sorry! Maybe it’ll grow on me?
Favourite lyrics: ‘hostage to my feelings’
It’s as good as it was when it was first released. I can’t quite place why but it feels kind of out of place here on the album, sonically and thematically/lyrically - however it remains a BOP and I don’t care who is in my way when I kick my leg out on every *ding*!
Favourite lyrics: ‘I got a boyfriend, he’s older than us, he’s in the club doing I don’t know what’
9. Getaway Car
This is SO jack antanoff - which is incidentally the best and worst thing about this song…. I’m almost certain this samples Bleacher’s song ‘Don’t Take The Money’ (which I love) but I’m here for a Taylor album and while lyrically it definitely is her, I feel like this song would be better suited as a feature of Bleachers album. However, saying that, this song is a bop and I think Taylor for providing another great road trip tune. (Side note: do I hear Lorde’s vocals in the background?!?!). I love love love the lyrics and story here as-well, story wise it’s one of the strongest on the album and I can’t wait to here Taylor’s backstory for it because I. Need. Answers!!!
Favourite lyrics: ‘x marks the spot where we fell apart, he poisoned the well, I was lying to myself’
10. King of My Heart
This is most definitely not what I expected. By the title I thought we would get a cute lil ballad about how joe rules Taylor’s heart or something, but nopppeee… honestly I’m not sure if I like this song yet - at this point in the album I was really feeling like a ballad was necessary…. however I digress…. I really like the verses but I think this is my least favourite chorus on the album. To me it just doesn’t work, however I think an acoustic version could be much much better so I shall keep my fingers crossed for that.
Favourite lyrics: ‘your love is a secret I’m hoping, dreaming, dying to keep’
11. Dancing With Our Hands Tied
This song hits my chest in a certain way… the way her vocals are layered… the relentless beat and perfect melody… I want to dance to this at a rave at 2am drunk out of my mind. It’s lyrical gold dust, it’s as deep as a well but touches you like a feather and if you told me that one day taylor would make what is essentially a dance track I would have choked. Is there any genre this girl can’t do??? What a beautiful line as well… ‘dancing with our hands tied’. Only taylor could come up with that. (Side note: this song reminds me of fellow queen of pop Carly Rae Jepson and now I NEED a collab)
Favourite lyrics: ‘I loved you in secret’ ‘we love without reason’ ‘25 years old, how were you to know’ ‘deep blue but you painted me golden’ ‘you said there was nothing in the world that could stop it, I had a bad feeling’ [ALL OF IT]
SO. TAYLOR. In case you didn’t know before, you know now, taylor is a grown woman and she likes sex (on hardwood floors no less). This song should be played over 50 shades of grey the entire way though (then it would be a good film). At this point in the album, there is an element of ‘okay we get it taylor, you really wanna shag joe’ but if Taylor wants to give us an album about sex then you best believe I’m gonna thirst for it. In typical Taylor fashion, it somehow manages to be classy despite essentially being about having her clothes ripped off and screaming ‘ahhhh’ on hardwood floors. The way she carefully sings each syllable and builds the tension to the chorus is something only she could do - It’s not subtle, it’s not the best on the album, but I’m not gonna lie when I say it got a little hot in here. Thank god I’m seeing my boyfriend tomorrow….
Favourite lyrics: ‘out secret moments in a crowded room, they got no idea about me and you’ ‘all of the silence and patience, pining and anticipation, my hands are shaking from holding back from you’
13. This Is Why We Can’t Have Nice Things
(Queen of long titles) HOLD ON TO YOUR WIGS LADIES. If you thought LWYMMD was savage, then you are definitely not ready for this. I wasn’t. I didn’t know what to expect from this song but it certainly wasn’t THIS. I am obsessed and I will fight anyone to the end of time who doesn’t agree this is Taylor’s most savage song (yet). Who’s been teaching her how to throw shade over the past 3 years?? Also why was I not invited to this Gatsby party? This song sounds like ‘it’s a hard knock life’ from Annie and now I’m just picturing a Taylor Swift jukebox musical, but anyway…. While there are certainly references, this song isn’t about anyone specific… it’s about the world in 2017. People look to hurt and tear people down more than they do build up, even when they open they’re homes/lives to you…. Taylor Allison Swift isn’t gonna take it anymore. You woke the dragon, don’t blame her. It’s simple, you break something good then you don’t deserve it.’ If you’re going to act like a child then you can’t have nice things. You treat someone like shit, you don’t deserve them.
Favourite lyrics: ‘did you think I wouldn’t hear all the things you said about me’ ‘feeling so Gatsby for that whole year’ ‘so I took an axe to a mended fence’ ‘If only you weren’t so shaaaadddyyy’
14. Call It What You Want
Taylor Swift is in love with a beautiful MAN and you can call it what you want, she doesn’t care. He stayed. He loves her for her. Nothing else matters and I AM DEAD.
Favourite lyrics: ‘they took the crown but it’s all right’ ‘all the liars are calling me one’ ‘you don’t need to save me, but would you run away with me… yes’
15. New Years Day
Don’t. Touch. Me.
Okay so I had literally no idea what to expect from this, from the way secret sessioners TS we’re talking I was thinking maybe All Too Well but happy?
However, no, taylor decided to kill me with this HAPPY BEAUTIFUL MAGIC DIAMOND. I love love love how personal this is. You can just tell that every lyric, eveything she’s singing about is just her remembering. hArDwOoD FlOoR!!!!! We may never know the story and we will never understand the particular feeling - and we don’t have to. The emotion of this song doesn’t come from taylor making us identify with the same feeling, it’s too specific for that. This is a song for the fans, those of us that, above all, just want to see taylor happy. This could be the last song she ever releases and we wouldn’t mind, Safe in the knowledge that Taylor finally found the one. Forevermore.
IM NOT CRYING YOU ARE
Favourite lyrics: ALL. OF. IT.