Swifties, the time has come. Taylor Swift has finally released “Red (Taylor’s Version)” on Nov. 12, complete with new “Out Of The Vault” tracks, a 10-minute song and a short film to make any Swift fan shed a tear.
For those of you confused, as she already has an album called “Red,” or are wondering what “Taylor’s Version” means, let’s catch you up on one of the most important women in pop music today.
Swift’s music was unfortunately sold out from under her a couple of years ago by her former label, Big Machine Records, to music manager and arch-rival Scooter Braun, who later sold it to Shamrock Holdings, a private equity firm. Swift’s solution to this was to rerecord all her old albums, which she would have the rights to. This would normally be quite the undertaking in the music industry, but Swift has certainly made an exception, a feat that can only be credited to her loyal fanbase.
“Red (Taylor’s Version)” is her second rerecording. The first was “Fearless (Taylor’s Version),” which was released in April of this year and was a huge success. This new rerecording is proving to be no different, as it’s even looking like streams and sales may surpass that of “Fearless (Taylor’s Version).”
“Red” is one of Swift’s most iconic and experimental albums. It is also considered to be the start of her famous transition from country to pop, as there is a bit of both in the album. “Red (Taylor’s Version)” freshly delivers all of the old “Red” songs with a much more mature sound from Swift.
This mellowed sound added depth to several of the contemporary ballads like “Treacherous (Taylor’s Version)” and “Sad Beautiful Tragic (Taylor’s Version).”
Sadly, it didn’t do much for some of the pop songs on the album like “I Knew You Were Trouble (Taylor’s Version),” “22 (Taylor’s Version)” and “We Are Never Ever Getting Back Together (Taylor’s Version).” The mixing of her vocals seems a little sloppy, and it ends up almost sounding annoying.
The same does not apply for the “Out of Vault” songs; these are songs that Swift wrote for the album but ultimately didn’t make the cut upon the original release. These new releases are filled with all the variety Swift has to offer, from pop to her old country style and even to folk at some points.
The highlight of this album is honestly not what I expected. “All Too Well (10-Minute Version) (Taylor’s Version) (From The Vault)” is a masterpiece that elegantly closes the album. Despite the cumbersome title, this song is a deep dive into what arguably could be her best song ever, “All Too Well.” Surprisingly, all 10 minutes of it were completely enjoyable.
Not only was the song phenomenal, but it was also joined by a short film of the same name. “All Too Well: The Short Film” stars Sadie Sink, Dylan O’Brien and Swift herself. The film visualizes the heavily descriptive song that chronicles Swift’s former relationship with Jake Gyllenhaal.
It’s filled with all the details one would expect from Swift, featuring shots of the infamous scarf Swift left at the house of Gyllenhaal’s sister to match the lyrics.
“And I left my scarf there at your sister’s house / And you’ve still got it in your drawer, even now,” Swift sings.
Both Sink and O’Brien give intense and emotional performances to the story, which is paired beautifully with stunning cinematography.
It certainly is an emotional time to be a Swift fan, so even if you have no interest in listening to the art that is “Red (Taylor’s Version),” make sure to check on your Swiftie friends; they certainly need it.