Natalie Braga, Piper Gallivan, Alivia Arredondo
The international pop sensation Taylor Swift has just released her new album Reputation. This album has shocked the nation with her new, bold lyrics, videos, and image. She has made it clear that she has grown and developed into a new person and is nothing like her past self. With this new album and image, she has released four singles: “Gorgeous,” “Call It What You Want,” “Ready For It,” and “Look What You Made Me Do.” While three singles had already come out prior to our writing this, we gained early access to the lyric video of “Call It What You Want” and we will be giving our opinions on each.
“Look What You Made Me Do”
This hit single was the first of the four that was released on August 24, and the first look the world got at Taylor’s new self. Though it may get stuck in your head, the quality of it is nothing amazing. The lyrics are very dramatic and attention grabbing and incorporate many hidden references throughout. These may be subtle, but they clearly get the message across that Taylor is done with all of the drama and because of all the things that people have done to her, she has become someone new and stronger. However, the extreme dramatization of all of the lyrics make the whole song sound not only repetitive, but also somewhat childish. At no point in the song does Taylor showcase much vocal talent, and considering half of the song is her repeating the line “look what you made me do,” we believe this song definitely got its point across, but is really not very enjoyable.
“Ready For It”
Taylor begins this beat based, intense song, with the bold lyric “knew he was a killer first time that I saw him,” letting the listener in on the topic of this song, which is to no surprise, a boy who has given her trouble. The majority of the lyrics in the verse are backed by a distorted beat, which Swift tops with a mix somewhere between rapping, singing, and talking. Though this type of singing runs throughout not only this song, but the whole album, we agree that this style of singing does not seem to suit her voice or persona. The verses use some lyrical tricks to connect different lines which can be catchy, however, in terms of substance they seem lacking and recycled. They are the usual, arguably average, boy-centric lines that Swift has been using since the beginning of her career.
The pre-chorus, and chorus, slows it down and is when she goes more into her familiar singing voice, which is enjoyable enough but nothing we’d really listen to again. Each chorus ends with the title line of this track, with Swift pausing before speaking the line “Are you ready for it?” This transitions into a loud and repeated computer generated sounding rhythm, which could possibly be entertaining in some crowded and large settings, however, once again, it’s not something we’d really see ourselves listening to on anything near a daily basis. This repeats itself a few more times, but the song really never hits a peak moment and to us, seemed quite bland and overused. It really doesn’t seem to have any major distinctions from the rest of her singles, and doesn’t seem to be anything special that will go down in history. Overall, it is okay for a possible party tune but nothing we’d truly recommend.
Swift’s “Gorgeous” was released in late October as one of her first singles for this album. This is a simple song – just about a crush she has on a guy she sees from across the room. It has no significant meaning or anything that really makes it stand out from anything you’d hear within 5 minutes of turning on KDWB. It seems the most similar to her old “prime of Taylor” music, but lacking the fun and upbeat tone that used to make her music more easy-going and catchy.
Taylor is definitely going for a new vibe, and wants to portray that in her new songs, but by doing that, she is downgrading the quality. Her lyrics are portraying having a crush as something that’s troubling her, and something that the man has to enjoy. Towards the beginning of the song she says; “Cause look at your face (look at your face)
/And I’m so furious” This kind of sentence is repeatedly said throughout the song, portraying that she is mad at the way he looks. She is also bragging about a boyfriend she already has. By talking about this new guy she thinks is gorgeous, she is implying that she is thinking about cheating. She says:
“And I got a boyfriend, he’s older than us
He’s in the club doing, I don’t know what
You’re so cool, it makes me hate you so much (I hate you so
This is not something that a role model for a lot of young girls should be saying as something that’s right or that it’s a situation that people should strive for. She is also saying that the gorgeous man should automatically like her, even if she’s not treating him well. The first lines of the song state: “You should take it as a compliment/ That I got drunk and made fun of the way you talk.” The idea is that he should be grateful for how she’s treating him, even though she doesn’t do anything nice and is just assuming he wants her. Overall, this song is just bland, and doesn’t achieve the point it’s trying to make. But fun fact, the baby saying gorgeous at the beginning of the song is Blake Lively and Ryan Reynolds daughter!!
“Call It What You Want”
Compared to the other 3 songs we reviewed for this article we found this one to be the least disturbing. Although many of lyrics have no value, for instance the lyrics “I want to wear his initial on a chain around my neck,” and “My baby’s fly like a jet stream.” These lyrics give off no true value to the song and they don’t have a deeper meaning. This song has a rather catchy beat. Unlike her most recent songs, this song’s beat is not dark and EMO, but more upbeat like her old self.
However, many of the lyrics in this song do not entirely support women in our constant fight to earn the respect we deserve. One of her lyrics read “ He loves me like I’m brand new,” this compares herself as an object that is bright and shiny and well new. This can give the impression to men and other women that women in general are shiny new objects that can just be replaced and this is not a good message for younger girls, boys and girls, and boys of all ages to be hearing.
As we’ve seen before, Taylor is known for bashing out friends/exes in her songs which hasn’t gone well for her before and only causes her more trouble. In this song some of her lyrics read “All the liars are calling me one,” and “All the drama queens taking swings/All the jokers dressing up as kings.” This could have been an intentional insult to some of the other artists in the music world and insulting them could just create another Katy Perry vs. Taylor Swift battle so why create the unnecessary drama? Overall, this song was not our favorite of hers but it was, however, our favorite of the 3 we reviewed.
After listening to all of Taylor’s new singles, we found ourselves quite disappointed by the end. Her new image, persona, and sound seems honestly quite fake, and they don’t showcase the talent we know she is capable of. The songs seem overdone and really don’t have much substance or redeeming qualities. On a scale from 1-10, we give them a 4.5, and we hope to see some stronger music from her in the future.