Music Review: Taylor Swift’s new album is strikingly heroic

Music Review: Taylor Swift’s new album is strikingly heroic

Taylor Swift, “folklore” (Republic Records)

In the years since Taylor Swift released her killer pop album “1989” in 2014, the singer has amped the production of her music, adding sounds including electronica, synth pop, R&B, dubstep, dance and even trap to her songs. Not everyone was ready for the rap style of “…Ready for It?” though it worked.

But while pop star Taylor, with all the bops and beats, is enjoyable and entertaining, her new singer-songwriter album is a welcomed return. In a time of madness, “folklore” feels like a moment to escape.

Her eighth record has a calmness and coolness reminiscent of the 2008 masterpiece “Fearless” and 2010’s charming “Speak Now,” as poetic lines about life are brought to life thanks to Swift’s sharp songwriting, with the light but piercing production doing its job by lifting the lyrics.

Swift is a grand storyteller, and “folklore” explores a lot. On some songs, she’s singing about life before she moved to Nashville as a teen to embark on her musical career. On other tracks, she’s telling the stories of others — doing it so well and vividly that you can paint the picture as the tracks play.

Frequent collaborator and one of contemporary music’s best producers, Jack Antonoff, assists on most of the album, while The National’s Aaron Dessner should be saluted for his massive contributions to the project. And epic vocals from Bon Iver match well with Swift’s soft tone on “exile.”

The 16 tracks weave into each other nicely, blending to make this folk-pop-country-Americana-guitar rock-singer-songwriter album work. Whatever the genre, “folklore” is first-class.

Mesfin Fekadu, The Associated Press

Entertainment

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Rimbey anticipating action-packed racing at COVID Cup

The event at Central Alberta Raceways will see three days of racing on the dirt oval, Aug. 21-23

76 new cases of COVID-19 reported Thursday

Active cases at 1,036, 10,713 recovered cases

Alberta RCMP launch online crime reporting

Select property crimes can now be reported online through the province-wide initiative

COVID-19 tests urged for all teachers and school staff

121 new cases Wednesday, active cases up to 1,040

Two-night fundraiser supports Sylvan Lake family after parent death

Billy Cooney, owner of Cooney Creek Plumbing and Heating, died July 25 after a dirt bike accident

Charges likely in fatal attack at central Alberta medical clinic: RCMP

A vigil was held Monday night to mourn the victim

U.S.-Canada pandemic border restrictions extended into September

‘We will continue to keep our communities safe,’ says Public Safety Minister Bill Blair

AB Infrastructure Minister announces $8,522,800 regional water transmission line

Funding is covered jointly by the province, Ottawa and benefiting municipalities

WE Charity registers as lobbyist, lays off staff, looking to sell real estate

WE Charity said its financial position has been greatly affected by the COVID-19 pandemic

Wetaskiwin Regional Public Schools receive grant from Indigo Love of Reading Foundation.

WRPS has received $15,975 from the Indigo Love of Reading Foundation.

Three people drown at Crescent Falls

Rocky Mountain House RCMP say the incident occurred Tuesday

Feds seeking private consultant to design firearm buyback program

The ban covers some 1,500 models and variants of what the government considers assault-style weapons

Face masks for teachers can impact learning on young children, experts say

Face coverings, mandatory in most indoor public places across the province, can help limit the spread of COVID-19

New Tory leader must build a strong team in Commons and for the campaign: Scheer

Scheer marked his final day in the House of Commons today as leader of the Opposition

Most Read