Taylor Swift – 1989

I haven’t blogged in a while, truth is I’ve been fairly ill (nothing serious), stressed with work and had very little time for doing the things I enjoy.

Against the theme of this blog I have decided to write about an album. An album I’ve been waiting for since I first heard ‘Red’ almost 2 years ago. Taylor Swift’s album ‘1989’ was released today and I have to admit I was in the car by 7 am this morning heading to my local supermarket to buy it. I can’t pinpoint exactly what it is about Swift that I am so infatuated with. I loved the film ‘Valentine’s Day’, although I admit I wasn’t really sure who she was at this point and she was just a name. Then I heard ‘We Are Never Ever Getting Back Together’ and I fell in love with her music and over the years with who she was as a person.

I’m a fickle album buyer, I have to like at least 3 songs and I won’t pay more than £10. Fussy I know, but I’ve learnt my lesson on too many occasions. However, I bought Red having only heard ‘Never Ever…’ and it hasn’t left my car in 2 years. That means that my husband and best friend both know more Taylor Swift songs and lyrics than either would care to admit to.

As with anything that is built up by the media and on social networks, there is always the possibility of over-hype leading to a huge disappointment, but I am only on track 8 and I’m looking forward to my second listen in the car shortly.

The foreword is powerful, I am speaking as a girl, and a fairly emotive one at that, but these sentences struck me most;

The debate over whether people can change is an interesting one for me to observe because it seems all I ever do is change.’

‘People can say whatever they like about me, but they can’t make me lose my mind.’

‘This is a story about coming into your own, and as a result…coming alive.’

‘Whispers behind your back don’t define you, you are the only one who gets who gets to decide what you will be remembered for.’ 

There is something about Swift’s honesty both through her music and through her words which make her seem more human, not just another cookie cutter pop star. She seems like someone I want to be friends with, to have tea and cake with, to talk to.

The album is more than just a CD and a case. Inside were 13 Polaroid pictures of Swift with ‘handwritten’ lyrics beneath. Which leaves me with the dilemma of where to out them. The album sleeve has all the lyrics (and frustratingly once again a message to work out from the lower case letters) and some great photos of Swift to accompany.

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Again, I had only heard one song from the album as I had stubbornly ignored the other song previews. I was anxious. Would I be let down? Would the hype I had built up around the album leave me feeling disappointed? Would I be sorry I had ever told the world of my love for Swift?

As I suspected, this album has left me even more infatuated with her. You often hear albums described as ‘soaring triumphs’ or having; ’emotional highs and lows’ but this one is both. All the reviews, in particular the Rolling Stone review found here; http://www.rollingstone.com/music/albumreviews/taylor-swift-1989-20141024.

The last part was the bit which caught my eye; ‘Deeply weird, feverishly emotional, wildly enthusiastic, 1989 sounds exactly like Taylor Swift, even when it sounds like nothing she’s ever tried before. And yes, she takes it to extremes. Are you surprised? This is Taylor Swift, remember? Extremes are where she starts out.

That is exactly what this album is. You know it’s Swift, you recognise ‘Shake it Off’ yet there’s something else to this album which catches you and wraps you up. You become immersed, wanting to know more about her story that as Swift herself says, ‘These songs were once about my life. They are now about yours.

I’m off to go and pick my best friend up now and to have another listen of the album. I don’t have a favourite song, yet, but I can safely say this album was worth all the hype. It was worth the early wake up and it was most definitely worth the wait.

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