So I had planned to continue my Lady Gaga albums reaction with Born This Way today, but in a fantastic turn of events, Miss Taylor Swift just decided to drop her eighth studio album on us with less than 24 hours notice. I am sure you are just as shocked as I am. And since I adore that woman and every piece of music she creates, the decision to react to folklore and share all my thoughts was a pretty easy & obvious one.
I am so excited to hear this sound. Let’s dive in, shall we?
Track By Track
A great opening to the album. I absolutely loved how we went into this album without hearing a single song, without even hearing a snippet. I had no idea what to expect and I have to admit I was a bit nervous because I thought there would be a very heavy folk sound to this one – but the 1 sets up a fantastic tone to the album.
Oh my god. Oh my god. This song is an instant fave. Genuinely, this might be one of my favourite Taylor songs ever. Period. It’s so damn good. Not only does it instantly make me think of the couple in my current WIP, but she manages to weave such a beautiful story in this 4 minute track. Outstanding.
the last great american dynasty
How does she do it?? I got shivers listening to this one. I love how so far with this album she’s making clear narratives for each song. This one is about the current home she now owns on Rhode Island, but it’s steeped in such vivid history and splendour that she perfectly captures in this song.
exile (feat. Bon Iver)
I have to admit, I wasn’t mad about this on the first listen but since listening to it more a few times, I’ve fallen in love with it. The vocals from Bon Iver complement Taylor’s so bloody well – it’s like a duet made in heaven. I love how fantastical this song feels, much like the rest of the album so far. The concept of all these stories being passed down by word of mouth, or in this case, song, is so interesting to me.
my tears ricochet
Another one of my instant favourites. I think whenever Taylor works on a song with Jack Antonoff, what we get is complete gold and this one is no different. Also it’s so great that this is Track 5.
Similar to exile, this wasn’t an instant favourite when I first listened but it has completely grown on me. I love the meaning behind the song and the lyrics make for such vivid imagery, of a lonely disco ball hanging from the ceiling while its heart/glass is breaking.
This is so beautiful. I can’t believe I was ever hesitant of this sound, because it suits Taylor’s voice so much. This song reminds me of something that Sufjan Stevens would release. It is divine.
Another stunning song. I love how it links in with a love triangle of characters with cardigan and then betty at the end of the album. I love the bridge so much. Her talent is unbelievable and I love so much how she’s writing these songs about fictional characters. Have you ever wondered about writing a YA novel, Miss Tay Tay??
this is me trying
God, I knew I would love this song before I even started. It’s so beautiful. Despite whoever it is about, whether it’s Taylor or someone else, I love the vulnerability on this track and the realisation that, oh you know what, I fucked up and I want to apology. Instead of putting the blame on someone or something else, Taylor knows that it is up to her alone to fix the mistake she made.
This song conjures such a vivid image in my head of two people in love, but have to keep it secret. I love the title – I also saw a post on Twitter that it reminded someone of Alex and Henry from Red White & Royal Blue – and I couldn’t agree more! The lyrics are so romantic and gentle and I love the minimal production on this track. It suits it so well.
Come on!! This song is so beautiful. I feel like I keep saying, “this is one of my favourites” but I can’t help it! Eek, this album is so good. I love the simple instrumentation on this track and I think the lyrics are really beautiful.
I can’t get over how well Taylor is turning all these songs into stories. I feel like through listening, we get a full beginning, middle and end. This isn’t a stand out track for me, but that’s not to take away from the beauty and harmony of it. I also think it proves that folklore contains some of Taylor’s best lyrics and vocals yet.
Wow, this song is just divine. The build up at the beginning is exceptional. I love how soft and slow it is, and then suddenly Taylor’s gentle voice comes in like it’s a voice from heaven. This is just stunning. One of my favourites off the album, without a doubt.
Ughhh, her mind. Seriously. I love this song so much, but what I love most is how it links back to cardigan and august. I feel like I keep saying “oh this is stunning/wonderful/insert good adjective here” but I’m honestly lost for words.
I really like the style of this song. I’ve said it already but I’ll say it again, Taylor’s vocals have come on leaps and bounds (and I didn’t even think that was possible). This totally reminds me of a Lana Del Rey track.
And just like that we reach the end of the album. I think this was a great track to end an already melancholic and kind of dark album. Taylor, or her character, is caught up in this toxic relationship and she’s struggling to say goodbye to it, even though she knows it’s doomed. Almost as if she’s struggling to say goodbye to the album…?
Current Top Three Tracks
- my tears ricochet
So I seriously cannot believe that Taylor Swift gave us her next album already. I know Lover was almost a year ago, but I didn’t think we would get TS8 until at least 2021. But just like the sound & style of folklore, she took me by complete surprise. I am such a huge fan of this body of work. I think it sounds like such beautiful poetry and I love how stripped back and piano focused this is. It’s definitely one that I’m going to fall in love with more the more I listen to it, but for already, this is nothing short of a masterpiece. We are so lucky and privileged to be alive in a time of Taylor Alison Swift.