CedricCed| October 30 2014
Taylor Swift shifts back to 1989 on fifth studio album from the 24-year old singer/songwriter. A change of direction musically has worked swell– take the hater’s anthem “Shake It Off” for instance; it spent two weeks at number one on Billboard Top 100. Successful lead single perfectly introduces the public into the new sounds of Ms. Taylor Swift. Insanely brilliant pop songs, upkeep the albums beautiful dark romance tale perfectly.
For one thing, the first serving of pop heaven is the very retro 80s throwback “Welcome to New York.” The production here is stunningly fresh without sounding dated. Furthermore, a welcome has never sounded so catchy “Its a new soundtrack|I can dance to this beat|Forever More|The lights are so bright, but they never blind me”. After arriving in New York, a beautiful mistake is waiting on pleasant rhythmic record “Blank Space.” Taylor gives a little flow here, “Nice To Meet Me|Where You’ve Been|I could show you incredible things|Magic Madness, Heaven Sent.” Production wise seems similar any song on Top 40 from any Female Pop artist. Even still, a well-crafted pop record.
In another realm of the album, the mid-tempo bouncing, incredibly produced “Out Of the Woods” is exceptional. Notably, most poignant record on the album is about a relationship “built to fall apart|and fall back together”. The energy is insanely magnetic, giving anticipation to a worthy live performance. Taylor Swift’s best song yet. Alternative mid-tempo standout, “All You had To Do Was Stay” asking her former lover “Here are you are now|Calling me up|But I dont what to say” but “All You Had Do Was Stay|Had Me In the palm of your hands, then.” One of the better written songs on the album showing the versatility in the new sound in a good light.
Adapting swiftly, Taylor Swift gives Katy Perry a run for the money on “Bad Blood” creating an anthem over an 808 beat with help from a melodic vocal. Singing to current lover “Bandages do not Fix bullet holes|You say sorry just for show.” The fate a toxic relationship is in question because “Cuz now we got bad blood|You know we used to used to be mad love|So take a|Look at what you have done.” By the same token, “I Know Places” is a sexy haunting, 808 Pop mesh that works. Ready to run from the “hunters” with “my love” she beautifully sings, “I know places we can hide|They’ll be chasing their tails just to track us down.” The growth musically here is the best moment inside 1989.
Expressing interest, in the big ballad territory, the best ballad on the album is the melodic earthy beautiful “This Love.” The vocals show the appreciation for a love that returned with open arms. Love is so good it is “glowing in the dark.” Indeed, an album standout worth a listen. Equally, good is the mid-tempo “I Wish I Would.” Elements in the production are reminiscent of old school Michael Jackson. Taylor sings over winning hook “I wish would you would come back|Wish|I never hung up the phone like I did|I wish you knew that|I’ll never forget you as long as I live.”Taylor shows enduring vulnerability on these beautiful ballads.
As an album, 1989 is exceptionally produced and written. Pop is breathing through this ambitious project. Respect for a defining moment in 80s pop music is brilliantly executed in music and presentation. Above all, it is refreshing to witness an artist successfully make a cohesive new direction.Taylor Swift is a woman ready to show artistry beyond comfort zones set by society.1989 is a great surprise!
1989 Best: “Out Of the Woods”,”I Know Places”, “This Love”, “All You Had To Stay Was Stay”,”I Wish You Would”, “Welcome to New York”
1989 Skip: “Style”, “Clean”
Grade: 90= A