Taylor Swift’s latest album has a little bit of something for everyone on there but is it all a bit much?
Anyone who can put eighteen tracks on one album has clearly decided to stick them all on to save on having to make tough choices or from a less cynical point of view because there is strong belief on all of the songs. On the one hand this is a great thing – particularly for fans as it does offer a slight insight into the creation of the album and diversity of material that Taylor Swift has decided to create. However, on the flip side of this it can mean that certain songs seem to blend into one another with little effect.
This isn’t to say that Lover is a bad album. On the contrary – it is an excellent album that highlights what Swift’s fans admire about her music, particularly with the strength of the way in which she sings with utter conviction and sincerity, particularly on song ‘Lover’ that musically is sweet and allows her vocals to shine through. But there are times when the album feels as though she perhaps doesn’t push herself as far as she potentially could. Songs such as ‘Miss Americana & the Heartbreak Prince’ and ‘Cornelia Street’ are wonderfully understated and well written songs but feel out of place in contrast with other songs on the album.
It is an album that has been designed to be a crowd pleaser and some of the strongest moments on the record come from songs such as ‘Cruel Summer’, ‘The Archer’ and of course ‘Me!’ that really capture Taylor Swift’s ability to deliver a catchy and uplifting song that will stick in your head long after it has finished. It is still pop music – but it has more of an edge about it that makes it compelling to listen to.
The album as a whole sounds fresh and light. But it is also a record that delivers a few pleasant surprises including ‘Soon You’ll Get Better’ that takes Swift back to her country roots and is a real highlight of the album – hypnotic and tender, it also reveals that her confidence in her songwriting abilities is stronger than ever.
Overall, while the album is perhaps slightly overindulgent in terms of length and perhaps plays it safe to some extent, it is certainly is a lovely and easy going listen with plenty of strong songs.
By Emma Clarendon
Lover is available to buy and download now.