Previously Published in THE DAILY IOWAN on December 14, 2017.
Image Credit: Imago/Zuma Press/TNS
Written By Rhiana Chickering
This year, Taylor Swift returned after a year-long break to release her sixth studio album reputation, re-claiming a top spot in the music industry with a new sound.
In her astounding comeback, Swift’s reputation features electro-pop music with relatable, captivating lyrics. Throughout her most intimate album yet, Swift takes listeners into her world behind all of the gossip and drama that follows, but as Swift swears, “I swear I don’t love the drama — it loves me.”
*reputation* marks a period of maturity for Swift, as she addresses heartbreak, sex, relationships, cruelties, and her reputation with vulnerability.
The songs are strung together in a sonically cohesive album, each with a lovely melody. “Dress” and “So It Goes” are sultry pop songs of a current love affair. Whereas, “New Year’s Day” is a piano ballad, in which Swift fantasizes about what happens after the midnight kiss — when she and her love will be picking up bottles together after the party — a mundane, but romantic task the world will not see.
“Call It What You Want,” focuses on a relationship, in which her boyfriend disregards the lies and casts the undesirable drama aside, remaining by Swift’s side and liking her for who she is as a person. In return, Swift stops letting others define her and her relationships.
Swift wrote the album keeping in mind that people on the internet would comb through her lyrics in an attempt to attribute her prior heartbreaks to each song. In her reputation magazines, which are complete with hand-written lyrics, poetry, and photos, Swift writes, “My mistakes have been used against me, my heartbreaks have been used as entertainment, and my songwriting has been trivialized as ‘oversharing.’”
However, Swift’s vulnerability and relatable, intimate lyrics in reputation are the exact attributes that make Taylor Swift a pop-phenomenon.
As a result, reputation was recently certified as 3X Platinum by the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) in addition to being RIAA’s top certified 2017 album to this day.