Reputation Album Review – The Appraisal
Album: Reputation (Taylor Swift)
Release Date: November 10, 2017
Hosts: Victoria Gomes Collavitti and Alexa LaMalfa
Who is Taylor Swift?
Taylor Swift is currently one of the hottest artists in the music industry and has been for nearly 10 years. She has a long history in the industry, including her debut in the country genre. With a powerful tool in her songwriting and previous love affairs, Swift has cranked out hits on top of hits. Her battle with critics and the public have only skyrocketed her success as people keep talking about Taylor Swift. She has won a plethora of major music awards, including CMAs, AMAs, VMAs, and many Grammys, and is also one of the most listened to artists across streaming platforms and the most popular artists to see live on tour in the world.
What is your favorite song on the album?
Victoria: My favorite song off Reputation is “Getaway Car.” As a hardcore Taylor Swift fan, I like to believe that I know which of her exes every song is about. Even ignoring the fact that this song is about her arguably “best” ex, Tom Hiddleston, “Getaway Car” is a powerful ballad that sits in the middle of the album’s tracklist that balances out the themes of Reputation. The album focuses on Swift’s image being ruined by the media after her public feud with Kanye West and Kim Kardashian as well as Karlie Kloss, but it also emphasizes her process of falling head over heels in love with her current beau, Joe Alwyn. The songs in the album balance out these two contrasting emotional themes with different beats, and “Getaway Car” unites the lovey-dovey feelings she has for Alwyn while also bringing in heavy-hitting beats as demonstrated in songs like “Look What You Made Me Do.” These themes combined with catchy verses and the metaphor of bank robberies to describe the feeling of falling in love makes this song the best to sing at the top of your lungs with the windows down in the car.
Alexa: My favorite song is also “Getaway Car!” I have a few core memories tied to this song that send it skyrocketing to the top of my list. The bridge is always getting stuck in my head. However, to be different, “I Did Something Bad” was originally my favorite when the album came out in 2017. I got to see the Reputation Tour live (best moment of my life) and the choreography is just unmatched for this song and something I’ll admit I’ve tried to recreate and learn in my bedroom. The song alludes to witches and the Salem Witch trials, which I think is so creative; I absolutely love how Taylor uses imagery in her songs. I think her lyrics are unmatched and all of her songs definitely tell a story.
What is the most important song on the album?
The most important song on the album is “Look What You Made Me Do.” While a possible controversial choice, the first single off Reputation holds the title of birthing the “reputation era” that Swift coined. She was missing in action for months to avoid the media scandals she was involved in and the slander she was falling victim to. All of a sudden, Swift drops short snippets of videos with the first few notes of this song featuring gold snakes. She was back, and she was angry. She releases the song shortly after as well as the revolutionary music video. She shocked the world with the “new Taylor,” one that was edgy, revenge-seeking, brutally honest, and confident in herself and her person. The starkly different sound on this album transformed Swift and skyrocketed her to a constant household name across genres, all thanks to the lead single, “Look What You Made Me Do,” for opening the gates.
What is the overall theme of the album, in your eyes? Why is it worth talking about?
It’s in the name. Reputation is a comeback album. Her reputation was trashed and slandered following her very public feuds with fellow big-name celebrities. She wasn’t heard from for months after choosing a passive stance as her name was dragged through the mud by the media. She fell in love during this period, feeding into the conflicting themes of revenge and passion throughout the album’s lyrics. Reputation was a complete turnaround compared to her previous project, 1989 (2014). She embraced this new image of herself and completely rebranded from sweet, naive pop-star Taylor Swift to the mega celebrity she is now, unafraid to speak her mind. Instead of feeding into the toxicity of social media and stooping to the level of those speaking bad about her, she was able to change the slander to praise through the release of this album.
- …Ready For It?
- End Game (ft. Ed Sheeran, Future)
- I Did Something Bad
- Don’t Blame Me
- Look What You Made Me Do
- So It Goes…
- Getaway Car
- King of My Heart
- Dancing With Our Hands Tied
- This Is Why We Can’t Have Nice Things
- Call It What You Want
- New Year’s Day