The Clock Struck Midnight

Taylor Swift realses 10th studio album “Midnights” on October 21, 2022


Angelina Popov-Easton, Editor

At the present time, it is not uncommon for artists to drop hints and teasers at an upcoming project of theirs before releasing it. Usually, though, these clues are given over the course of a couple weeks, not ten years. 

Taylor Swift is known for hiding easter eggs of future songs in a music video or lyrics, but after she announced her new album “Midnights” at the 2022 MTV Video Music Awards, fans of Swift realized she had been hinting at the album for years now through her lyrics. Needless to say, expectations were high.

Depending on your favorite sound of Taylor Swift, those expectations were either met, or you stayed up til 12am for nothing. Anyone who’s been listening to Swift consistently knows that the production of her music is constantly changing. Her last two albums, ‘Folklore’ and ‘Evermore’ which came out in 2020, had more of a folk-rock sound compared to her pop tracks like ‘shake it off.’ 

While some fans online were hoping for the same vibe as her previous album, ‘Midnights’ takes a turn to electronic pop, a sound the most greatly felt on the track ‘Labyrinth.’ Although not entirely out of place, as the song speaks on gender roles that often get forced onto Swift, and the electronic sound warps her voice to a genderless one. 

People who know of Taylor Swift but are otherwise uninterested in her music, may know her for songs like ‘blank space’. However, hardcore fans of her music look forward to the introspective songs she releases that make them feel seen about some aspect of their life they hadn’t thought anyone else experienced. One song on the album “You’re On Your Own Kid,” Tells about Taylor Swift’s struggles with her career and an eating disorder she revealed she had in her “Miss Americana” documentary. The song is about Taylor’s journey through growing up and having her expectations be met with reality. 

“Maroon” is a more mature version of the fan favorite “Red” and you can feel that through the lyrics. A place where the lyricism falls flat is on the track “Snow on the beach ft. Lana Del Ray.” The song was too shallow for two artists known for evoking emotion in listeners through their lyrics. “Bejeweled” is a track also not well received so far, usually sitting at number 13 on people’s personal rankings. The song comes off as flowery and frankly way too upbeat given it follows the track “Vigilante Shit,” a song that could easily be on her ‘Reputation’ album.

However, a constant theme throughout the album is the calm and collected confidence Swift exudes through her words. She is sure about her place in the music industry, and she is comfortable experimenting with new sounds.

At times this experimentation pays off. ‘Anti-hero’ and ‘Mastermind,’ already two fan favorites, would even catch the attention of those who dislike most of Swift’s music with their attractive sounds. 

While the tracks may be inconsistent at times, and some of the lyrics pale in comparison to her past songs, there is at least one tune on the album for every fan of Swift’s music. In that sense, ‘Midnights’ accomplishes all it needs to. What Taylor Swift will do next is anyone’s guess, it’s undeniable that this is a turning point in her music career.