With Fall there is always a rush of fabulous movies, new and returning TV, and album releases out the ying-yang. So imagine my surprise that one of the ones I’m most excited about is Taylor Swift’s.
I’m always excited by female artists, but T. Swizzle has always given me reason to doubt her. From her slut-shaming lyrics to her romantic country vibe I just couldn’t get onboard. But since I don’t live under a rock I wasn’t afforded the luxury of escaping the unnecessary criticism surrounding her: namely her relationship history.
But my interest was piqued when I started seeing Swift’s presence on Tumblr (both in the form of blogging and also gifsets) where she discussed feminism, her then-upcoming album, and her new outlook on life. She said she’d spent a while establishing a relationship with herself, and she was proud to put that newfound voice into her latest record.
So I picked it up…and was pleasantly surprised. Elated. Enthralled. Enchanted, by the ballad of a young woman going through elegant, if sometimes painful, growth. Though the musical style reminded me of Tegan and Sara meets Lorde, with a hint of Lana Del Rey and a distinct Swift-spin to it all, the raw emotion and demonstration of independence was more akin to Beyonce, particularly on her latest record. There’s definitely still the sense of romanticism that built up Swift’s fan base to begin with, but there’s a new feel to it. It’s grown; it’s more jaded but also more free to speak out against injustices against her. It feels simultaneously like she’s found her voice, while still seeking it–an embrace, perhaps, that she is a work in progress. She’s not done, not by a long shot. And if her video drop for “Blank Space” yesterday is any indication, this album won’t be her last big fuck you to the media and naysayers.
We’re seeing a whole new Taylor and I hope it stays. That’s a message I can get behind.