Over-Produced 1989 Signals Departure

Casey Miller, Editor in Chief

Cute, 17 year old Taylor Swift, recognized for her long curly blonde locks and noticeable Nashville twang, is gone. In her place is a synthesized, industry-influenced musician who made an album to make money.

Swift’s 5th album, titled 1989 after the year she was born, is one hundred percent different than her past musical endeavors. Over her 7 year career she has often been defined as a country star. However, at 24 years old, Swift appears to be trying to break into another genre completely.

Unfortunately, overly auto-tuned songs like “Welcome to New York” and “Out of the Woods” have layers of voices, making it impossible to distinguish Swift’s voice from the rest.

Her first single “Shake It Off” is a catchy, classic pop song. It’s shocking, like “Style” and “All You Had To Do Was Stay.” They are not the Taylor Swift fair that America has come to know and love. With so many background vocals and a hundred instruments, her voice is virtually hidden.

With Max Martin and Shellback, both Swedish music producers making it big in America, a certain level of dance music is expected with 1989.

Bleachers and Fun lead singer Jack Antonoff also collaborated with Swift on “Out of The Woods” and “I Wish You Would.” The production prevails over Swift’s voice as Antonoff introduces glaring synths and erupting drumbeats.

The only song I enjoy is “Blank Space.” Swift manages to make a lyrically beautiful song with a catchy beat and create a cinematically beautiful, and eventually viral, music video.

In the video, Swift mocks media claims that she’s insane with her boyfriends by displaying a tumultuous and eventually fatal relationship in which she goes crazy and kills her lover. Props for sticking it to the paparazzi, but I am a bit concerned with how she destroys a beautiful estate in the Hampton’s.

Overall, the lyrics aren’t quite as specific as they have been in songs of Swift’s past. “She wears short skirts, I wear T-shirts” is traded for “Tossing, turning, struggled through the night with someone new / And I could go on and on, on and on.” This may show some maturity of writing on Swift’s part. She isn’t just the teenager comparing herself or describing things around her, but a woman who has gone through heartbreak and understands that it goes beyond everyday happenings.

Because of this new turn in her music style, I definitely have more respect for her as a singer-songwriter.