On November 10th, Taylor Swift pretty much stopped the entire world by dropping the best selling album of 2017. While I am not a proclaimed Taylor Swift fan, I still found myself listening to the entire album. After a listen (or three), here's my ranking of the album's fifteen tracks.
15. End Game
I am all for any collaboration with Future or Ed Sheeran but something just feels so wrong here. The faux rapping, the messy verses…. It sounds like Future took his paycheck and ran. Also, I don’t want to hear Taylor Swift say ‘dope’ while attempting to rap ever again. Best line: I bury hatchets, but I keep maps of where I put 'em.
14. Look What You Made Me Do
The fact that this song sampled “I’m Too Sexy” by Right Said Fred is a crime in itself. The song sounds like three different tracks shoved into one and the lyrics try too hard to push a bad girl persona of Swift. That just doesn’t exist no matter how much she wants to believe the old Taylor is dead. Also, what did they make her do? Write a mediocre song? Best line: Honey, I rose up from the dead, I do it all the time.
13. This Is Why We Can’t Have Nice Things
This track is pretty much her biggest middle finger to Kanye West and her way to blame him for ruining her good time. Fans may like the song but if you aren’t one, the song just comes across as petty, childish, and forgettable. Best line: Then you stabbed me in the back while shaking my hand.
12. I Did Something Bad
Look What You Made Me Do Part Two but with better production and more tolerable lyrics. Best Line: If a man talks shit then I owe him nothing.
11. King Of My Heart
Here, 1989 Taylor can be seen but, the production is a too all over the place for my liking. The idea that love finds you when you stop looking is different for her though. Best Line: The taste of your lips is my idea of luxury.
10. So It Goes...
The verses leave much to be desired but Swift definitely pulls through on the chorus. However, she pulls out the “bad girl” trope again which makes this song sound more like a filler. Best line: You know I’m not a bad girl but I do bad things with you.
9. Don’t Blame Me
This song is nicely produced but it doesn’t sound like a Taylor song to me. Personally, I would like to see someone with vocal chops like Adele take this song on for it to reach its full potential. Best line: I once was poison ivy and now I’m your daisy.
8. Ready For It?
This song would be a lot lower if it weren't for that amazing chorus. However, I couldn’t help but cringe at that “rapping” in the verses. Best line: He can be my jailor, Burton to this Taylor.
This song reminds me of “Red” and the lyrics are some of her most honest on the record. I would have liked to see some of the electronic production left off such a nice song though. Best line: Do the girls back home touch you like I do?
6. Dancing With Our Hands Tied
The production is massive in this song and I can only imagine how cool it would sound live. The lyrics are stunning too. Best line: I’m a mess, but I’m the mess that you wanted.
Wildest Dream 2.0. It sounds like a Lorde song but with a ton of sexual innuendos. Maybe the shock value of the song is why I like it so much. Best line: Only bought this dress so you could take it off.
4. New Year's Day
Love her or hate her you have to admit that Swift is amazing at writing ballads. While it does not reach the level of “All Too Well”, the song still makes you want a love you probably don’t have. Best line: Please don’t ever become a stranger whose laugh I could recognize anywhere.
3. Call It What You Want
This song has the lyrics we’ve come to expect from a Taylor Swift song so in short, it’s perfect. I almost wish she made this the conclusion of her album. Best line: You don’t need to save me but would you run away with me?
I don’t know if I love this song because I relate to it or if it's just that good. It’s probably a mix of both. Also, the line about her cats is iconic along with the “ding!” before that epic chorus. Best line: Guess I’ll just stumble on home to my cats, alone, unless you want to come along.
The most 1989 song on the album and the most perfect. Swift evokes all the classic images that have become her trademark and the Bonnie and Clyde vibe of the song makes it an instant classic. If she doesn’t make this a single, it will truly be a crime. Also, poor Tom Hiddleston. Best line: It’s no surprise that I turned you in ‘cause us traitors never win.