Lover: A Swift Love Affair or a Steady Romance?

This is an in-depth review of each Taylor Swift song off of her new album “Lover.” We believe this review offers a unique perspective, as we are both college aged millennials. Thus, it is safe to assume that we are Taylor Swift’s prime audience. Below is an in depth analysis of each song. I, Brooks, will be tackling the first nine songs and Olivia will be tackling the last nine. In the end, we will both be responsible for giving it a score of 1-10. Please Note: We are already somewhat biased to Taylor Swift. However, this review will attempt to be as objective as possible..

The Songs:

“1. I Forgot That You Existed.   

“I forgot that you existed, and I thought that it would kill me but it didn’t..”

I enjoyed this song immensely. I think we all can relate to forgetting about somebody due to anger or other extenuating circumstances.  Like how often do we let other “stuff” get in the way of people? The key message here seems to be one of kindness and respect. There are moments in life that seemingly can make or break one’s character. Dang, we should all @Drake because this song gets me all in my feelings.

2.  “Cruel Summer”

“Fever dream high, quiet in the night.. You know that I caught it.”

I’m getting Rihanna type vibes here. It was a cruel and unbearable summer for Taylor without her lover. It is almost as if she is comparing love to a virus of some sort. “Your love is my drug?” vibes here anyone? Also, some serious “Teardrop on my Guitar vibes.” Here as well. Except this time she seems to have a pretty good fit on who her “Drew” is.

3. “Lover”

“We can can leave the Christmas lights up to January… can I go where you go?”

My God. What a beautiful song. “You’re my… lover?” T-Swift has finally found a lover? Woah.  Mary’s Song and You Belong with Me have finally come true for Ms.(?) Swift. She’s reached a new cornerstone here- a cornerstone that seemingly won’t crumble anytime soon. 

4. “The Man”

“Cause if I was a man, then I’d be THE man.

Bold, confident, and unrelenting. T-Swift exposes the hypocrisy and double standard that women in the workplace face on a daily basis. 10/10

Somebody needs to blare this near @realdonaldtrump

Feminist power move.

5. “The Archer”

“I’ve been the archer – I’ve been the prey – who could ever leave me darling, but who could stay?” 

A moment of gravity and boldness for Taylor – she seems to be expressing the kind of self doubt and  raw emotion that has made her music such a hit. Raw, bold, and unrelenting, “The Archer” finds Taylor at her rawest and most honest.

6. “I Think He Knows”

“He’s got that boyish look I like in a man.”

I’m an architect, I’m drawing up

the plans, it’s like I’m 17 nobody understands.”

Dang. T-Swift knows who she’s into.

She feels 17 again with this man. OMGG!!! I’m so happy for her here. “I’m an architect, I’m drawing up the plans..” wow. WOWWW.

All the feels here!!!!!!

7. Miss Americana & The Heartbreak Prince

“American glory, faded before me, Now I’m feeling hopeless,ripped up my prom dress Running through rose thorns- I saw the scoreboard and ran for my life.”

Fame was enough for Taylor. She’s done with it. She’s come to a place where she doesn’t care what other people say. She’s found her “Heartbreak Prince.”

Oh Dang. Good for Her.

8. Paper Rings

“The moon is high, like your friends were the night we met.

Went home and tried to stalk you on the internet.”

Dang. Seems like Taylor almost admits to cyberstalking here- but then she takes a step back and is like hey, I’m done trying to find out more about this person on the World Wide Web. Let’s meet up for coffee or something? Idk what exactly her thought process was here but it’s pretty universal. I mean seriously, when’s the last time you haven’t added somebody on Snapchat,

Instagram, or any of that and then become extra paranoid you’re like dang… this person is too good for me? I assure you- I have gross habits as well.

My grossest? Eating whole hotdog packets late at night. What can I say? I’m a growing man..

Olivia… take it away here..

9. Cornelia Street

This song rips my heart out!!!! It’s really not even that sad, but this is exactly what goes through my mind whenever I am like in a relationship (which is never lol) or like “talking” to someone or whatever. It sucks when you associate memories with people that you don’t end up with or something because in many cases, those memories in themselves are good! Also I relate to Taylor when she says

 “Back when we were card sharks, playing games

I thought you were leading me on

I packed my bags, left Cornelia Street

Before you even knew I was gone”

Because I feel like that is how I handle my “relationships”– we love being paranoid! Also this reminds me of that one line from “I Did Something Bad”: “You gotta leave before you get left.” like okay T Swift just @ me next time! 

Favorite lyric: Windows flung right open, autumn air jacket ’round my shoulders is yours. We bless the rains on Cornelia Street, memorize the creaks in the floor”

10. “Death By A Thousand Cuts”
This song was interesting for me because it is basically the complete opposite of “I Forgot That You Existed” and I love it. It’s so sweet and sad and it’s exactly how you feel when you lose a relationship that you really care about (even a friendship). This has classic T Swift vibes (kind of Red-ish, maybe some Speak Now or 1989 mixed in?) and I appreciate this song because the rest of the album is about finding your true love and stuff. Side note, is “And what once was ours is no one’s now” a reference to “Ours” from Speak Now? I think yes. 

Favorite lyric: “You said it was a great love, one for the ages, but if the story’s over, why am I still writing pages?”

11. “London Boy”

I’m just gonna say it– I love this song because it reminds me of Harry Styles. Do I hate myself? For sure. But, “I saw the dimples first and then I heard the accent,” just SCREAMS Harry Styles. You can fight me on this, but I stand by it. This is a great song for Americans because I feel like it fits in everything we think about England but there has definitely been some roasting on Twitter by some Brits. It’s so catchy and fun and exotic and honestly I think anyone that went through a One Direction phase would love this song. We get it, T Swift, you’re dating a nice British man and you love him and his accent and England. This song is so clever and cute and if she made a music video for it I would watch it 500 times. 

Favorite lyric: “They say home is where the heart is, but that’s not where mine lives” but also “They say home is where the heart is, God I love the English.”

12. “Soon You’ll Get Better” (ft. Dixie Chicks)

I really haven’t listened to this song very much because it makes me sad. I am a wimp. I get major “Ronan” and “Safe and Sound” T Swift vibes with this one (especially bc the Dixie Chicks are in it). It is really a beautiful song that shows the pain that she had to go through with her mom’s cancer treatment and recovery and her talent as a songwriter as well as her vulnerability makes this song so personal and beautiful and raw and truthful. 

Favorite lyric: “desperate people find faith, so now I pray to Jesus too”

13. “False God”

SAXOPHONE. Ok, but actually I kind of feel like a heathen for listening to this song (and loving it). I get “Dress” vibes from this song probably because it is about sex but like… oof. I wish I could say I hate this song, but alas, it is quickly becoming one of my favorites on the album. The chorus is so smooth and catchy and when paired with the saxophone??? Wow. I kind of feel the same way about this song as I do with “Take Me to Church” by Hozier. The passion in the song is so prominent and it really is just a nice sexy song that makes you say “yeah okay the old T Swift really is dead but also I’m here for it.” 

Favorite Lyric: “But we might just get away with it, religion’s in your lips even if it’s a false god”

14. You Need To Calm Down

A bop. I love this song, and I am not ashamed. This song rocks, for real. I always love Taylor’s songs to her haters, they are always so dang empowering??? The music video for this song slaps as well (the Queer Eye cast said hello), and I laughed at the part with the Westboro-Baptist-esque crowd. This is a great tune for when you need to gas yourself up or just want to have a feel-good moment. Also, with all the hate being spread on Twitter this song is just refreshing. It puts a lot of frustrations with stuff happening in the world in a catchy summer bop, and I’m here for it.

Favorite Lyric: “You just need to take several seats and then try to restore the peace and control your urges to scream about all the people you hate. ‘Cause shade never made anybody less gay”

15. “Afterglow”

This song resonates with me. A classic story of self-sabotage. Her vulnerability of discussing her worries of the relationship crumbling makes this song so so good. She recognizes that most of the things that are worrying her are actually just in her head, but they end up happening irl. The bridge of the song: 

“Tell me that you’re still mine

Tell me that we’ll be just fine

Even when I lose my mind

I need to say

Tell me that it’s not my fault

Tell me that I’m all you want

Even when I break your heart”

is 100% my favorite part of the song– sometimes you just need someone to comfort you when you’re being crazy and irrational and self-destructive!!!!!

 Favorite Lyric: see above excerpt

16. “ME!” (feat. Brandon Urie of Panic! At the Disco)

This song drew some criticism when it first came out, and rightfully so. This song is the weakest on the album (lyrically) but HELLO this song is a bop. The inclusion of Brendon Urie made this song 100x better, and overall it was a nice summer jam. Also, in the album version of the song, Swift took out the “hey kids, spelling is fun!” line which also improved the quality of the catchy song. Honestly, this was a good choice as the first single and the music video goes unmatched. I mean, she got a new kitten from it!!! 

Favorite Lyric: “And when we had that fight out in the rain you ran after me and called my name. I never wanna see you walk away” bc this gives me “Mine” flashbacks

17. “It’s Nice to Have A Friend”

Ok, so this song is not one of my faves. It is quite short (only 2:30), however, it does tell a sweet story of a classic romance. The song begins with Taylor and her friend in grade school doing cute friend things, then progresses to the teenage years where there ~might~ be more than purely friendly feelings between the duo. The song concludes with the marriage of the two friends (predictable), and they live happily ever after. The progression of the relationship in the story reminds me of “Mary’s Song” from Taylor’s debut album, and also emphasizes the importance of your partner being your best friend.

Favorite Lyric: “Light pink sky, up on the roof.  Sun sinks down, no curfew. 20 questions, we tell the truth. You’ve been stressed out lately, yeah, me too. Something gave you the nerve to touch my hand. It’s nice to have a friend.”

18. “Daylight”

Straight up, this song is the perfect way to end the album. Taylor addresses her path to find true love– “I’ve been sleeping so long in a 20-year dark night”– and how what she thought love was like is completely different than what she imagined: “I once believed love would be burning red” (Hello “Red” reference???). This song truly concludes “Lover” in a beautiful and hopeful way; Swift has found her soulmate and doesn’t want to look at or think about anyone else other than Joe. The haters can no longer focus on Taylor’s unstable love life. Roll tide to that, and roll tide to “Lover.”

Favorite Lyric: “My love was as cruel as the cities I lived in; everyone looked worse in the light. There are so many lines that I’ve crossed unforgiven. I’ll tell you the truth, but never goodbye.”

Conclusion:

Brooks: Masterpiece. A stunning progression from Taylor’s songs about teenage heartbreak and turmoil. Personally, I’d like to thank Taylor for giving us a firsthand account of the mix of

 emotions when it comes to love and heartbreak. This album really isn’t an album  for Taylor- it’s a testament to her growth and beauty as a person.

Thanks for being raw and honest, Taylor.

Hopefully I’ll see you on the next tour.  100/100

Would and definitely will listen to this again.

 

Olivia: I loved this album. Straight up. I am giving it a solid 95/100, though, because i’m not quite sure if it tops RED or 1989. Those two have my heart forever.

 

***total score====== 97.5% out of 100%.

About the Reviewers:

Brooks: I’m a junior at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill! When I’m not in class or studying, I love to read, write, and listen to all things Taylor Swift.

GO HEELS!

3 interesting facts about me:

  • I have three dogs- Lucky, George, and a new addition- Winston. . They’re kinda strange sometimes,but they’re so cute, and I love their little expressions and how they interact with each other.
  • I have a twin brother.
  • I went to the Reputation tour last year and was blown away!

 

Olivia:

Olivia: I’m a senior at the University of Alabama (ROLL TIDE ROLL) and I love all things having to do with microbiology 🙂 I’m always down for a good road trip, especially if the final destination is a concert of some sort.

3 interesting facts about me:

  • I have the same birthday as Beyoncé
  • Tennessee is my favorite state and anyone who doesn’t think it’s the best state in the country is wrong 
  • Roll tide?

 

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