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This Day in Pop: Taylor Swift releases ‘1989’ album in 2014 (Oct 27)


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A day like today but 7 years ago, Taylor Swift released her fifth studio album, ‘1989’.

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Her magnum opus, “her very first documented pop album”. It sold over one million copies in its first week, spent 11 frames atop the Billboard 200, placed five of its singles in the Billboard Hot 100 top 10 (three of them going number 1) and won Album of the Year at the Grammys. 1989 not only took Taylor’s career to superior levels, but it gave music one of the biggest eras to ever exist.

The album saw Taylor fully embracing pop music after flirting with it in tracks like ‘We are Never Ever Getting Back Together’ and ‘I Knew You Were Trouble’. As big and successful this record was, there was something that kept the intimacy that Taylor had repeatedly offered in her past releases. The fresh production by titans like Max Martin, Shellback, Jack Antonoff, and Ryan Tedder, alternative artist Imogen Heap, and her long-time collaborator Nathan Chapman, combined with her ever relatable and clever lyricism, made ‘1989’ a critical and commercial success.

Fans have been constantly speculating about its re-release, as part of Taylor’s effort to gain control over her master recordings. Last September, after trending on TikTok, Taylor put out her version of ‘Wildest Dreams’ (to be discussed below). What will the unreleased songs from those sessions sound like? Who will be the featured artists? Time will tell.

Meanwhile, I would like to run down the track list and give my opinion about each song.

Welcome to New York: Most of the times, Taylor aces at opening her albums. This is a good example. A feel-good, upbeat song which conveys a message of freedom and reinvention. Can’t wait to visit NYC and use those lyrics as captions for my Instagram posts. :peasants_taylor_swift_walking_away_bye_goodbye:

Blank Space: One of her many signature songs. Taylor overturned the narrative about her being a serial dater and not being able to sustain a healthy relationship by writing a satirical, catchy tune. The song is filled with pickup lines, some of them being misheard: “Starbucks Lovers”. The music video is a serve. Working with Joseph Kahn was, in my eyes, some kind of reaffirmation of her main pop girl status. 

Style: The best song in the album, the best pop song by Taylor. I’m a sucker for mid tempos with moody, subtly s.e.xy lyrics and this song is an icon for that. The minute I heard it I immediately thought: “this HAS GOT to become a single”. Is it too on the nose with the whole Harry Styles thing? Maybe, but who cares… this is pop perfection. As for the music video, I think it’s gorgeous, but it’s also evident how other clips were taking up the budget. The performance of this song in the 1989 World Tour is a visual feast. :melt_weird_drift_wow:

Out of The Woods: This is the song that brought my hopes back up for this album (see Shake It Off for context) when it was first released as a promotional single. Its urgency sends me into a frenzy and singing along to the chorus leaves me breathless. If this was going to be pop Taylor, I was there for it. This song gathers all the lyrical chops that made me fall in love with her. Boy, did she take me to bridge city.

All You Had to Do Was Stay: This was an early favorite for me. Later, though, it kind of faded. One thing I have to question about this song is its track 5 status. Taylor fans know that a track 5 will be this vulnerable, heart-wrenching, I-want-to-lie-on-the-floor song. All You Had to Do Was Stay lacks the necessary pain for it, in my opinion.

Shake It Off: I remember vividly. One of my best friends sent me this YouTube link saying: “Taylor’s new single is out” … all unhinged. I clicked and I just couldn’t believe it. I was shaking my head as I disappointedly watched the music video. Sure, it was catchy, but I was still entranced by songs like “All Too Well”, “The Last Time”, “State of Grace”, etc. and I wanted more of it! If this was going to be pop Taylor, I was not there for it.  Shake It Off became the biggest thing in the world and I had to bear with it. Thankfully, it grew a bit on me some time later. Nonetheless, it irks me that many people tend to write Taylor off just based on this song. Still, this is one of the biggest tunes in pop history whether I like it or not.

I Wish You Would: This was a grower for me. I love all the influence of 80s music in its production. I have read so many theories about this song and how it might tell the story of a gay romance. Who knows! :demi_lipstick_flirt_red_pink_makeup:

Bad Blood: I thoroughly dislike this song. Just like Shake It Off, many people disregard her because of it. The Kendrick Lamar feature did not add much to the song (by the way, when Kendrick is featured on a pop song they are always so lukewarm or plainly bad, which is a shame because he is a super talented artist). On the other hand, the music video is a masterpiece.

Wildest Dreams: This song is absolutely gorgeous. Her heartbeat adds so much intimacy to it. Again, I was taken to bridge city. Her performance in the Grammy Museum playing an electric guitar is something I watch whenever I need to lift my spirits. I understand why the music video has received some backlash, but it cannot be denied that it is a beautiful work.

Her new version of the song was released last September after it started trending on TikTok. In my opinion, this one is even better than the original one. Her vocals sound much more polished and naturally, more mature. It is really exciting to think how the rest of the songs will sound.

How You Get the Girl: Lyrics are cute, indeed, but I am pretty positive I have heard this song less than 10 times during these past 7 years.

This Love: Another early favorite and one that has stayed with me until today. This song is the only one where Nathan Chapman, the producer of most of her country catalogue is credited, and the last time this happened.

It’s hypnotizing how the lyrics about an off-and-on love are combined with such a haunting melody and production. I would die to have an acoustic version of this gem.

I Know Places: Truly underrated. Somehow, though, I like the fact that this song keeps it hidden treasure status. Taylor is great at metaphors, and the boxes, cages, foxes, and fences shine here. I love how the chorus soars and can’t wait to hear it once she releases 1989 Taylor’s Version.

Clean: Most of the time, Taylor aces at closing her albums. This is an outstanding example. Linking the deserting feeling one gets after a break up and the struggle of overcoming an addiction or a bad habit make of Clean one of the best songs in 1989. Personally, I have related to this song so much and hold it close to my heart :tifftear_miss_ny_new_york_ms_crying_wipe_tears_sad:. The amazing Imogen Heap co-wrote and produced the song. 

The standard edition of the album ends here, but the Deluxe version has three masterpieces that need, MUST be addressed.

Wonderland: Countless Alice in Wonderland themed songs have been written, but hers is the cherry on top. This is one of her many songs in which I just stop and think: “does this woman know me, is she stalking me, or why is she describing my life” :mariahstare_carey_annoyed_um_irritated:. As I once read in an article, she should have changed the lyric “haven’t you heard what becomes of curious minds” for “curious cats”.

You Are in Love: This is a beautiful song. It describes a relationship in such a mundane and uplifting way. This could be Lover’s mother, but it was not written about her own love life.

New Romantics: If the lyrics in this song say that heartbreak is the national anthem, then it is, and it has to be sung proudly and loudly. Why is this gem not in the standard version? Moreover, why wasn’t this the lead single? It’s catchy, danceable, fun, anthemic… it addresses haters in a much more sophisticated and cool way than Shake It Off… I mean, what’s not to see. I wish it would have had a proper music video. Loved it the minute I heard it and still do today.

 

 

What do you think, Exhale? Love the album yes or yes?

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I loved every second of this album. It’s full of high school content drama which I love, especially back then when I was in high school - it put me through every mood possible, from love to drama. My favorite tracks are: Style, Wildest Dreams, Blank Space, Bad Blood, Out Of The Woods, New Romantics. Also, the music videos are the real deal! ❤️

What’s your fav music video? I love this thread, great job! :fran_frog_meme_green:

  • Love 2
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Also, my delusional azz says Taylor started the 80s revival trend all the way back in 2014. I know 80s revival has been around since the 90s (or 1989, if you will :makeup_kylie_jenner_makeup_brush_lol_laugh_haha_hehe_lmao:), but in my awful opinion, Taylor did it explicitly and made it cool, while ripping off Carly Slaé Jepsen in the process. :holduplisten_hold_up_listen_preach_telling_wisdom_wise: The Weeknds and Dula Peepers of today should thank ha for their careers, methinks. :peasants_taylor_swift_walking_away_bye_goodbye:

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2 hours ago, SUCCESSICA IS A QUEEN said:

Atrocious album. Nothing but uninspired and boring, basic yt-girl pop tracks that lack any substance and are already severely outdated. Notice how after this album, mainstream pop took a dive into the wrong direction. Everybody say thank you to Ratlor Swift for ruining pop music. You did THAT. :mimiclap_mariah_clapping_applause_proud_yes_Yas:

Wow, we live in a world where Jessica Simpson fans drag Taylor's 1989 :shadelaugh_tiffany_ny_new_york_ms_miss_cackle_laugh_lol_haha_hehe_lmao:

  • Haha 1
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2 hours ago, SUCCESSICA IS A QUEEN said:

Atrocious album. Nothing but uninspired and boring, basic yt-girl pop tracks that lack any substance and are already severely outdated. Notice how after this album, mainstream pop took a dive into the wrong direction. Everybody say thank you to Ratlor Swift for ruining pop music. You did THAT. :mimiclap_mariah_clapping_applause_proud_yes_Yas:

New York GIF - New York Pumpkin - Descubre & Comparte GIFs

 

HAHAHA BUT WHAT THE ACTUAL PHÜCK 

Maybe Alison set the bar too high and all the others came up with watered down products. 

  • Haha 2
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2 hours ago, Style. said:

I loved every second of this album. It’s full of high school content drama which I love, especially back then when I was in high school - it put me through every mood possible, from love to drama. My favorite tracks are: Style, Wildest Dreams, Blank Space, Bad Blood, Out Of The Woods, New Romantics. Also, the music videos are the real deal! ❤️

What’s your fav music video? I love this thread, great job! :fran_frog_meme_green:

YOU never go out of Style ♥

I'd say my favorite music video is 'Wildest Dreams' because I love Africa and its wildlife... but all of them are awesome...

  • Love 1
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1 hour ago, stanLOONA said:

I love this album :wontcry_tears_crying_sad: it was my favorite from Taylor and now I can add folklore :kyliecry_crying_tears_jenner_wipe_sad:

I don't really care for the bonus tracks tbh :clicktina_xtina_christina_aguilera_mouse_computer: so idk what to expect from From The Vault :yaknow_britney_xfactor_X_factor_talk_tell_chat_you_know: but I did enjoy "Mr. Perfectly Fine" so maybe I will like the new music

 

1 hour ago, I Always Sing Live said:

Clean, You Are in Love, and New Romantics are the highlights for me. Not a boring song on this album (except for Out of the Woods :emma:). Moreover, we're not ready for 1989 (Taylor's Version). Those vault tracks will be a cultural reset. :madance_madonna_dancing_party_bw_black_white:

 

 

It's so interesting to see the opinions as to which tracks are the ones you guys like and you don't... so varied! Iconic albums only :kylie_proud_yes_wow_impressive_amazing:

 

 

1 hour ago, I Always Sing Live said:

Also, my delusional azz says Taylor started the 80s revival trend all the way back in 2014. I know 80s revival has been around since the 90s (or 1989, if you will :makeup_kylie_jenner_makeup_brush_lol_laugh_haha_hehe_lmao:), but in my awful opinion, Taylor did it explicitly and made it cool, while ripping off Carly Slaé Jepsen in the process. :holduplisten_hold_up_listen_preach_telling_wisdom_wise: The Weeknds and Dula Peepers of today should thank ha for their careers, methinks. :peasants_taylor_swift_walking_away_bye_goodbye:

 

I've always seen 1989 and EMOTION as part of the same family! buuuut, didn't 1989 come out before? :snooptoya_jackson_snooping_looking_magnifying_glass_glasses_search:

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30 minutes ago, maki93 said:

Wow, we live in a world where Jessica Simpson fans drag Taylor's 1989 :shadelaugh_tiffany_ny_new_york_ms_miss_cackle_laugh_lol_haha_hehe_lmao:

Jessica Simpson wasn’t responsible for the demise of pop music however. Also songs like ‘Irresistible’, ‘Forever In Your Eyes’, ‘With You’, ‘When You Told Me You Loved Me’ and so forth showcase literally more diversity than any Fadlor song post-1989. Funny thing is I actually didn’t mind Taylor until her failed attempt at going ‘pop’ when she stole Britney and Kelly’s producers and thought she was doing sum. Was it a commercial success? Yes. But so was Vanilla Ice. Let’s be real, Taylor’s entire aesthetic throughout most of the 2010s was nothing but a knock-off kids bop version of Lana Del Rey’s early eras (Red / 1989) and Britney Spears’ Blackout era (reputation.) with a touch of the ‘yt pick me! girl’ Tumblr aesthetic. It’s no wonder why she was one of the most hated celebrities of the 2010s. I just miss when Taylor actually made decent, more organic-sounding songs like ‘Tim McGraw’ and ‘Enchanted’. Even her country-pop hits from her first 3 albums were so much better but that Taylor is long gone.

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