Recommended Tracks: I Forgot That You Existed, Cornelia Street, You Need To Calm Down
Artists You May Like: Demi Lovato, Meghan Trainor, Carly Rae Jepsen
You don’t need to be in love or be in a relationship to appreciate Taylor Swift’s new album, Lover. Filled with stories about insecurities, finding yourself, and knowing the difference between good and bad, Lover shines a light on what it means to be alive today. And, okay, there are also some songs about love that will make any hopeless romantic swoon.
Differing from reputation, there is a new lightness on this album that comes through on the opening track, “I Forgot That You Existed.” As we all know, Taylor’s last album was her response to the drama she had been facing over the past few years. On “I Forgot That You Existed,” she recalls a moment when she genuinely forgot about having enemies and what it feels like to be at the center of controversy. When you listen to this track, you can picture her just walking along, getting lost in the beauty of the day, and being content. It sets up the tone of the album excellently.
After hearing a couple of songs about finding love and keeping love, Taylor tackles the idea of gender bias on the fourth track, “The Man.” While it is all so ridiculous, there have always been unfair biases towards men and women, what it means to be a boss versus what it means to be bossy. Taylor ponders how her career might be different if she was a man and observes, “They’d say I hustled, put in the work / They wouldn’t shake their heads and question how much of this I deserve / What I was wearing, if I was rude / Could all be separated from my good ideas and power moves.” Hopefully, our society will be able to fix this issue, but until then, we can just jam out to this track.
Another creative stand-out on the album is the seventh track, “Miss Americana & The Heartbreak Prince.” At first listen, you would think that this track was about high school turmoil and its damaging effects on a young person’s soul. For instance, Taylor mentions homecoming queens, a marching band, and hearing whispers in the hallways. However, Taylor is actually using high school to represent the current state of politics in America. She sings, “American stories burning before me / I’m feeling helpless, the damsels are depressed / Boys will be boys then, where are the wise men?” It is such a unique spin on reality; everything that is going on in society seems so juvenile and making a comparison to high school games is an effective move.
The “lover” aspect of the album becomes more prominent towards the middle of the album, where we hear a succession of songs that focus on love. We hear about how Taylor treasures her current relationship so much that she wouldn’t even care if she wed her boyfriend with paper rings; the value of their relationship does not lie within materialistic items. Taylor then takes us for a walk down memory lane, or down “Cornelia Street,” where she reminisces about finding love at that former residence. She paints a very clear picture of what life was like on Cornelia Street, touching on small, delicate moments she had in her apartment. Following the sentimental track is the more disturbing, “Death By A Thousand Cuts,” where Taylor tries to envision a life without her lover. After such agony, we are then treated to the playful, “London Boy.” This track is a nod to her boyfriend and the fun, English experiences they share whenever they visit his hometown.
While there are some personal tracks on Lover, one of the most personal is the twelfth track, “Soon You’ll Get Better.” On this track, Taylor expresses how she has been dealing with her mother’s cancer battle. When something like this happens to a parent, it can be hard to accept that there is something wrong; you feel so hopeless. You wonder if they will ever get better and, in order to prevent yourself from completely breaking down, you have to hold on to the possibility that they might. The track serves as a beacon of hope for those experiencing such trauma.
The album ends on a heartfelt note with the tracks, “It’s Nice To Have A Friend” and “Daylight.” We hear a steel drum accompaniment on “It’s Nice To Have A Friend,” making us feel warm and safe. Further instilling this idea of protection and comfort, the lyrics tell of a close relationship that forms between childhood friends and follows them into adulthood. As the album closes with “Daylight,” we are left feeling radiant, as Taylor calls upon golden hues and shades of red to describe the love she feels from her current lover.
After swimming through the vibrant pool that is Lover, we are left knowing that Taylor is in a better place now more than ever. Life can be complicated and frustrating at times, but as long as we hold close the things that bring us light, we are sure to get through anything – and end up with a bold, effervescent album of emotional stories.
You can stream Lover on sites like Spotify and Apple Music.