I didn’t realize this was a fscking double disc until I opened the damn case. What a happy surprise. I wanted to dislike this whole album, because I enjoy pissing off Jordan but Taylor made this both very hard and easy. First, I have some admiration for her skill as a lyricist, but she balances that out nicely with her mediocre singing ability. I’m no musician, but even I can pick out what’s sweet (or dangerous) to mine own ears and what is not. At some points I suspected the record company wanted to bust eardrums so that none of us would be able to hear Taylor’s little secret. (she has a less than stellar voice).
In case anyone wants to bash me for being unfair or critical, allow me to tell you that I listened to every song three times before passing My Opinion (capitalized for emphasis). Jordan may tell you all that I complained bitterly about this Favour he asked of me, but it was with good reason. I took it seriously. So add up the length of the album and double it. That was the amount of time I devoted to something I didn’t want to hear. That being said, you are all entitled to Your Opinion of My Opinion.
So, onward to the reviews. Happy reading.
I like the way she sings “by the water”. Its a nice catchy play of notes. Otherwise, Meh. Typical Taylor Fluff.
The first two verses and the chorus I really appreciated, vivid stuff. This could be quite the video. Then she goes into this hum-drum about being on guard and his being a bad idea… why the buzzkill? She’s got all this intense and charming imagery colored with sparkles and lights and then throws in this juvenile psychotherapy nonsense. There was enough angst in Mine. There didn’t need to be any in this one.
Back to December
Wait…had to restart the song just to check if this was indeed Taylor Swift and that I actually heard a soulful well sung intro with a story I actually wanted to hear. Yes, yes it is. Well I’ll be damned, maybe this won’t be so awful after all. Hmm, yes I’m liking this, it flows, that breathy thing she does works for once, this is kinda like…wait. I’ve heard something like this already, haven’t I? Hmm…. Ah. “Need You Now”. Nice try, almost had me there. Well, to be honest, I prefer this to Antebellum.
…cute. Spunky, glittery an nicely graphic. Is it worth being the title song? Maybe. Wait …Oh. Wasn’t this already a hit when it was called “You Belong With Me”? IMO, it would have worked better as a quirky indie song. Applying the cutesy highschool attitude to older situations just makes her that much more juvenile. Like she’s showing us all how well she plays dress/grown up.
… I have to get this out of the way first: If you think you were too young what the hell were you doing with him in the first place?
‘kay, nothing (much) more will be said on that point. Moving on…
The high school thing is really bothering me at this point now. Yes, I KNOW it’s her market. Yes, it’s a rich source of stories to angst and sigh about on a song. Yes, it’s what she does best. But christ….this is such a waste of a song. It has a nice on-my-way-to-jaded thing going for it. The fact that her voice breaks (slightly) on the name is a nice touch. But then she ruins it to pieces. I actually want to like it, but I can’t help but feel she’s invaded my room and started painting it pink and writing her journal on my mirror with a glittery pen. I mean, “acing your tests”? Really?! Everything she writes has that juvenile flavour to it so that even when she puts out something relatively mature, it’s still got this in between quality that I have a lot of trouble with. Pardon the expression, but it feels half-baked to me, and there’s nothing that bothers me more than a half of anything. I like intensity, particularly in my music.
I do like this. Maybe it’s because it sounds like Natalie Maines pulled a Swift (heh heh). It’s catchy, and consequently kinda pointless. Nothing earth shattering, but fun. Also the only real Country sounding song so far.
Also, another PostScript (that has nothing really to do with this song):
I wrote this review on the public bus in the Big Ol’ City sitting next to a young guy drenched in cologne. To the guys out there: Not sexy. Don’t do it, please. Its also detrimental to the Ozone Layer.
The Story of Us
After listening to the whole album three times over, I STILL have to check the title of his one. I don’t know what’s going on: the only thing I heard in three listens was the lyric “I never heard silence quite this loud” which is nicely ironic. I swear I can almost hear a really decent pop song in the cacophony, but… Well it’s really almost painful to find it. Truly, I had to keep turning the volume down, cause the intensity of the song was making me slightly nauseous. But then I couldn’t hear the lyrics. Shame. Might have made a good single (IMO) If they’d scaled back a bit. Well, more than a bit.
Never Grow Up
Aha. I knew she would come out with the Truth eventually.
A reedy adolescent voice doesn’t really do this song justice, or maybe it’s just Taylor that doesn’t. And mark the calendar, this is historic: The first time I wanted the backup singer to overpower the lead. Just thinking about a man singing this songs gives me a little pang of heart. I honestly feel like someone else (anyone else) should be singing this song.
See if this image makes you chuckle at all:
A young woman sits placidly on the bus listening to her iPod, looking slightly annoyed when she is inexplicably startled, jerks about a bit and involuntarily chucks her iPod into the aisle.
Here she leads up to what I thought was gonna be an “enchanting” and easy-going acoustic ballad, and I find her shrieking in my ear again. Only a one song reprieve from the last time. Maybe I shoulda known better too, Taylor.
Now, I know I’ve been bitching about the adolescent feel of all the songs but this is the one song where I think it’s justified. Only Taylor Swift could get away with singing this song. Young, romantic and “sparkly”. Aside from the disproportion of volume I have another issue, more a question really…is this a country album or not?
Better than Revenge
No sooner I ask the question then do I get an answer. I really like this one. It’s a good example of why Hayley Williams is one of my new favourite artists.
(For those in the dark: Google or Wiki search, then go Youtube the song “Misery Business” and see if it seems at all familiar.)
You know, I believe Taylor after hearing this: there is nothing she does Better than Revenge. If I were John, I’d be more insulted by this than “Dear John”. I mean, that was about a high schooler, anyway, right? Right. The fact that this is probably the most well written and well put together song makes it that much worse.
I have since been informed (many times) that this song is NOT about John. Yes, I KNOW this. My point was that it would be that much more insulting IF it was. I know who it’s about, but please, lets not clutter the internet with his name any more than necessary, hm?
For this song, I like the bombast of sound. There’s a lot going on, but a lot of good things. The only problem with it is that Taylor’s voice can’t keep up. The one time she should be shrieking, she doesn’t. While her performance ain’t too bad, it just feels weak when you pick it out if the epic musical background she tried to sing in front of.
Also, I think the ending of the song gave me slight whiplash.
As I said before, she can really create an image, putting lyrics together in a nice picturesque way. A nice forlorn deep husky voice would have made this an amazing song. As it is, it’s just album fluff. Too bad a man can’t sing it. Other wise the lyric, “I sit on the floor wearing your clothes” would be kinda awkward.
Shkrwchjrcsag zr tbc esguy egjhf hg dvh schh gn d wjbfh jiewc jtrc zr tdfgncbv….
It’s got some nice metaphors. Just the kind of thing the kiddies on LazyFrog(?) Would like to sing. Ten kids singing this at the same time should sound better than Taylor. To be fair, it’s not the catchiest tune, she seems to speak most if it. Which is too bad, it’s playful and evocative enough that it should have been, well, spunkier. Maybe Taylor got tuckered out by the end if the album, all that growing up she seems to be doing in every song and swinging from depressed ex girlfriend to raging psycho to happy-happy-joy-girl and then right back down to sad ville again.
Otherwise, more album filler.
DISC 2 – Ours
Why is the only other real country sounding song on the extra disc? This has got the Taylor stamp, with cutesy heartwarming lyrics. The cutesy-ness goes too far, however with that weird music box melody going on in the backround. Also It might just be me but I wish the lyric “people throw rocks at things that shine” were “people TURN rocks into things that shine…” as in, people work hard to make the best of the little they have. It would be infinitely better if it was. Just a thought.
I’d like to know what’s so bad about this guy that nobody seemed to like him. A gap in his teeth and tattoos seems to be about the sum of his crimes.
DISC 2 – If This Was a Movie (Eli)
When she was writing Back to December I guess she had some leftover ideas and stuck them in an extra song for the extra disc. Cause really, it just feels like Back to December part II.
I can’t help it. I keep hearing Eli. In my little world, that is now the name of this song.
DISC 2 – Superman
This is the kind of album fluff I like. It’s not a hit, there’s nothing particularly special or unique about it, but it put a (slight) smile on my face anyway. At first. I thought it was about how she sees her boy as a kind of superman, and that they got a Good Ol’ Fashioned 50′s thing going on. But then she starts pulling a Negative Nancy, saying he’s got a bad rep (even though he seems to be the briefcase type) wondering if he’s seeing other girls and wishing the flowers she gets were from him. Way to turn my smile upside down, Taylor. Just keep pissing in my cereal. Not like I was actually enjoying it or anything.
DISC 2 – Back to December (acoustic)
Okay, I know acoustic means non electrical ACOUSTIC accompaniment. So how come this doesn’t feel like an acoustic song? It should be ONE violin, one guitar and only Taylor’s voice …. Oh, I see.
DISC 2 – Haunted (acoustic)
Well, my problem with the original version was that Taylor’s voice was too weak to hold up to the epic-ness that was the music of the song. Scale down the epic and instead of her voice keeping up with the music, you got nothing to cover up her voice. Sounds like if she put anything more into her performance she’d pass out. It feels like such a powerful song then you got this mosquito trying to hum along.
Xxx. Xxx. Xxx. Xxx. Xxx. Xxx.
… And so, we are Free at last. Throughout the album I found evidence that makes me wonder if she’s purposely scaling back her skill and ruining perfectly good songs just to continue being the Cash Cow that she is. Like I said, I truly hope that she really IS the talented lyricist and songwriter I believe her to be and that this will be the last sugar coated caramel centered shloppy teen angst love ridden album she puts out. She talks about growing up, but I have yet to see/hear her do it musically.