Wednesday, January 24, 2024

Analytical listening to Taylor Swift shattered by “New Year’s Day” from “Reputation” (2017)

In preparing my Taylor Swift seminar, I've been putting on earburds and listening to her albums in chronological order. My focus is on identifying themes from song to song and from album to album, such as Swift's ongoing concern with how one can know what others are thinking. But this analytical mode can be shattered by a song I haven't previously paid much attention to, such as I experienced the other day with "New Year's Day", the last song on "Reputation" (2017): "I want your midnights / But I'll be cleaning up bottles with you on New Year's Day." Here, Swift's lovers beautifully share not only intense "midnights" but quotidian domesticity. (Andrew Shields, #111Words, 24 January 2024)

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