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Commentary: Heart bleeding ‘Red’ for Taylor

21 October 2012 By Megan Flannery, Arts and Life Editor No Comments

The first time I heard of Taylor Swift I was crying over Christopher Columbus.

Yes, the same Christopher Columbus who discovered America in 1492. I was doing homework for history class and my aunt asked me to go to Taylor’s concert with her.

I had never heard of Taylor before and Christopher had me in too much distress to even think about going to a concert. So I said no.

Worst decision ever.

Two months later I had become Taylor’s biggest fan.

From her “Teardrops On My Guitar” phase to “You Belong With Me” I feel like I’ve grown up with Taylor and her music.

That’s why I’m really excited for Taylor’s newest CD, “Red” which came out Oct. 22.

In my opinion (which if you ask my friends probably means nothing because I love everything she does) it’s her most mature album yet.

She’s no longer the teenage girl writing songs in her bedroom about the boy next door.

Her lyrics, her stories, her themes and even her album artwork all portray a new Taylor, a girl that is grown up and newly independent.

In the title track “Red” she sings about a past romance, weaving colorful imagery with her lyrics.

It even has a touch of electronic bass besides her classic guitar melodies. It’s a technique she’s never debuted before, and though some might disagree, I really like it.

The rest of “Red” follows in suit. It’s definitely different from her old music, but I don’t see anything wrong with that. Artists should be allowed to mature without being scrutinized.

For example, “I Knew You Were Trouble” is probably her most experimental track on the album.

It’s the fourth track, has a dubstep beat and even features a breakdown at the end of each chorus. However at the same time she still sticks to her roots singing about love and gives it a hint of country twang.

It’s not all new though. “Stay, Stay, Stay,” which is one of my favorite tracks on the album, is a classic Taylor Swift anthem. She’s in love, it’s happy, there’s a boy and every time I hear it I just want to dance. “Stay, Stay, Stay. I’ve been lovin’ you for quite some time,” is reminiscent of her “Fearless” days.

Another new feature on this album is the two duets that she does.

Rather than just telling one side of a love story, you get to hear both sides. One track is with Gary Lightbody called “The Last Time” and the other is with Taylor’s British male counterpart Ed Sheeran on the track “Everything has Changed.”

Both songs are arguably two of her most mature tracks yet. “The Last Time” is lyrically powerful and one of her longest songs on the album at nearly five minutes.

It’s the story of two hearts aching for one another.

It begins with piano and eventually breaks into a guitar solo.

On the other hand in “Everything Has Changed” Taylor and Sheeran simply serenade one another.  I’m making a bold prediction that this will be one of the best selling songs on the album.

It’s the perfect song to sing along to with a simple guitar melody. “All I know is we said hello/ And your eyes looked like coming home.”

Each song on the album tells a different story. It features a new Taylor with a hopeful future.

I’ll admit that I’ll probably like anything she writes, but even if you’ve never been a fan of her before you should give this album a shot.

She’s no longer the curly haired teenager singing about how Joe Jonas broke up with her in a 27-second phone call.

She’s celebrating independence, the future and her new love Connor Kennedy.


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