Here at MCE, we’re not going to bore you with the standard details (like other publications) about the new album from Taylor Swift. Any music fan on the planet is well aware that her brand new record, ‘Red,’ is out and available for the masses. Her fourth record will undoubtedly spark controversy, speculation, criticism, and, of course, overwhelming popularity.
Taylor is the biggest music star in the world right now. Just as her ‘Speak Now’ tour wound down, we began hearing rumors of new music in the works, and now, we are seeing her on television shows daily, all over the radio, and murmurs are surfacing about an upcoming world tour in the spring.
‘Red’ doesn’t do much to silence the critics from her past. As we’ve heard for months leading up this release, Taylor worked with people on this record that she hasn’t worked with before, but despite all of that, the songs on ‘Red’ cover the same issues (mainly love and relationships) as those on her three previous albums. And that’s ok…Taylor is 22 years old, and, although she’s matured incredibly as a songwriter, something that is impeccably evident on ‘Red,’ she is still a girl trying to find her way in the world.
First of all, we need to accept the fact that Taylor Swift is not a country star. She’s not necessarily a pop star. She’s a music star. She’s the biggest thing in the industry right now, and the fact that she can’t automatically be characterized in one particular genre, along with the fact that she has one of the more wholesome images and down to earth personalities in recent memory, are exactly what makes her such a star.
‘Red’ is sure to be another blockbuster, with songs like “State of Grace” and “Stay, Stay, Stay” being future chart-toppers. Despite being littered with auto-tune tidbits, “I Knew You Were Trouble” and “22” are sure to be favorites among Taylor’s largely adolescent fan base.
There are 16 tracks on ‘Red,’ with varying degrees of quality throughout the body of the record, but overall, it’ll be another monumental hit for Ms. Swift. But two main things are apparently obvious on this album: Taylor’s songwriting and her vocals are starkly improved from ‘Speak Now.’ She adopted an entirely new writing process…and it’s tough to argue with the results.
There are certain albums in an artist’s career that are landmark moments, ones that transform how we, as fans and critics, view he/she as a singer, songwriter, and performer. ‘Red’ is NOT one of those moments. The Taylor Swift haters won’t hate her more after listening to this album, but she certainly won’t win them over either. This is more of the same material as a continuation of ‘Speak Now,’ only more musically sound and sophisticated. Lyrically, however, it’s not quite where the music industry masses want Taylor to be. But honestly, will Taylor ever win them over? No…and she really doesn’t care.
Taylor has been on ABC’s “Good Morning America” last week and this week leading up to the release of ‘Red,’ which more recently included a live performance of songs from the new record this morning. She will also be performing her newest single, “Begin Again,” live for the first time on The 46th Annual CMA Awards on November 1 on ABC.
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