University of Southern Indiana's student publication | USI | student newspaper

The Shield

University of Southern Indiana's student publication | USI | student newspaper

The Shield

University of Southern Indiana's student publication | USI | student newspaper

The Shield

Boyz on T-Swift: “1989”


T-Swift’s new album loses roots

Two stars

Review by Jake Tapley

When Taylor Swift released her previous album “Red,” which transitioned her career from young, prolific songwriter to acclaimed superstar, it shocked me.

Her first single “We Are Never Ever Getting Back Together,” didn’t seem right.

I was never really a fan of her music, but something about her older stuff felt a little more genuine.

Then, her new album came out.

Where her previous album still kept some of the twang and acoustic tinge that she is known for, “1989” abandons the former sound in favor of the newer one that she’s been adjusting to for a few years.

This idea of a “new Taylor Swift” is made painstakingly clear in the opening track, “Welcome to New York,” which seems to be expressing the idea that, since she lives in New York now, she needs to make a record like this.

The song is annoyingly repetitive and sets up the tone for the rest of the album – overproduced music that is predictable and doesn’t offer the listener much other than a loud, infectious chorus. Don’t get me wrong – there are certain songs on the album that stand out sonically as being a bit more worthwhile.

The chorus of “Out of the Woods,” while still extremely repetitious, reminds me of the Lion King in the way it almost uses chanting as an instrument to build a wall of sound.

The song “Bad Blood” was refreshing since it allowed for the production to drop down at parts and accent just the percussion and her voice.

If you’ve already heard the lead single “Shake it Off,” then for the most part you’ve heard the catchiest song “1989” has to offer.

If you enjoy that song, I’m sure you’ll enjoy the rest of the album to an extent (and vice-versa).

I want to be more OK with this new sound than I am because there are moments on this album where the songwriting shines through, and I get a glimpse of the old Taylor.

Still, I can’t help but feel that we have lost the only quality about Taylor Swift that set her apart from other contemporary women in music – her folk and country roots.

“She’s T-Swift, not T-Pain”

Four stars

Review by Jimmy Pyles

Taylor Swift’s “1989” is finally out, and honestly I haven’t been this excited since Starbucks introduced the pumpkin spice latte.

I love me some T-Swift, so I’m glad that she is finally making a pop album, because after “Red,” it would have been hard for her to go back to country.

“Shake it Off” is easily the best song on the album. Any song that has me moving like I’m swatting a bee away from my face is great in my book. On days when my haters are trying to keep me down, it helps me remember that I’m perfect just like Tay.

All the components of the song mesh well together, from the simple drum beat to the subtle horn section to the effortlessness and range of Taylor’s vocals. It is easily one of the best pop songs of the year.

With all these amazing tracks, it’s hard to pick faves, but “I Wish You Would” and “Blank Space” would have to take the cake.

“I Wish You Would” reminds me of a song from the 90’s. The guitar riffs and vocal pattern makes it one of the better tracks on the album.

“Blank Space” has typical Taylor lyrics, which I enjoy more as pop songs. It’s one of the few songs in which I like the verses more than the chorus.

I hope “Bad Blood” is Tay’s next single. The chorus is so powerful, it shows off her range perfectly and not to mention, it’s super catchy.

Also, this song is supposedly about Katy Perry, who we all know is just poor man’s Taylor.

One teensy prob with the album is the fact that Taylor’s voice is covered up by so many sound effects. They clearly overworked the album. Just let my girl sing.

I understand it’s a pop record, but not every pop album needs to sound like someone singing in an empty swimming pool.

She’s T-Swift, not T-Pain.

If you don’t like this album then you’re just a typical Tay-Hater. If you don’t drive to Target ASAP to buy the deluxe album, you’re so basic, and I’m going to have to unfollow you on Instagram.