Why is Taylor Swift great

Taylor Swift, one of the most successful artists in US pop. Aaron Dessner, one of the brightest minds in US indie. Then there is also a Bon-Iver feature! FOLKLORE was announced by the singer on her social networks just 16 hours before the release; Dessner later added a few more information in an Instagram post. For example, that his brother Bryce contributed some arrangements and the national drummer Scott Devendorf can also be heard on the album. So you didn't have a whole day to speculate what this album would sound like.

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The short version: FOLKLORE sounds like what you imagined. FOLKLORE continues to sound like the cover suggests. FOLKLORE sounds pretty great.

The long version: Eleven of the 16 songs were created together with Aaron Dessner, Jack Antonoff, who in the past not only worked with Swift many times, but also with Lorde and Lana Del Rey, is responsible for the production and co-songwriting of five others. You can hear the handwriting of the two in the respective pieces, Dessner's trademark non-rock with its slight stumbling, the subtle interfering noises and procrastinations and the tendency to deconstruction, pushes itself very deeply into the music and is just as interesting as it is diversely orchestrated; Antonoff works more cautiously, closer to the pure teaching of pop.

There isn't a single weak number on Taylor Swift's FOLKLORE

The "indie album" that many suspected, however, did not turn out, Swift remains the boss in the Swift house, the vast majority of the songs would also work in very simple arrangements. What characterizes the album, however, gives it a matter of course that its predecessor LOVER did not have at every point, is its will - well, not to reduce, but to reflect on very classic songs, to which all the unreasonable demands of modern pop Going around the world: Swift has recorded songs that flow like a beautiful river through a late summer-weary intermediate realm; cite smart, electronically primed indie rock variants from the past few years as well as nineties pop between Wallflowers and Natalie Imbruglia and folk, chamber pop and related things, from Laurel Canyon to Greenwich Village.

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Sometimes they caress ("Seven"), sometimes they tell from the belly of a long-gone America ("The Last Great American Dynasty"), often they tell of love or what is left of it. What is the highlight of the album? Difficult to say, the retrospective that characterizes Swift's text work leads to many beautiful stories. Maybe it's “Illicit Affairs”, the most successful accounting of secret sexual encounters since Prefab Sprout's “The End Of The Affair”. Possibly “August”, where her voice sings wonderfully jumping in the chorus of a summer love, “sipped away like a bottle of wine”. But it could also be that it is “Mirrorball”, in which the role of the artist as a projection surface is examined.

Oh yes, and then there is the Bon Iver feature: “Exile” is also very good, but it is so early on on this album that in the end you forgot it again. A bit of a shame. But also a strong indication that there is not a single weak number on FOLKLORE.

Listen to Taylor Swift's FOLKLORE on stream:


Lambchop :: Showtunes

Autodidact Kurt Wagner plays free-floating ambient Americana as a digital pianist.

SG Lewis :: Times

Can only women play disco? No, the Brit's dance floor house justifies the hype.

Fiona Apple :: Fetch The Bolt Cutters

Percussion instead of piano: Fiona Apple's songwriter outsider pop is becoming more rhythmic.


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