Song of the Day #4,261: ‘New Romantics’ – Taylor Swift

The second Taylor Swift non-album track I’d like to highlight is ‘New Romantics,’ a bonus cut from 1989.

Like the rest of that album, ‘New Romantics’ eschews Swift’s country-pop sound for pure pop, embracing the 80s influence referenced in the album’s title.

I’m not sure why this song didn’t make the album’s final tracklist. It’s one of her very best efforts. I guess it’s smart to hold back some really good material in order to sell the deluxe edition.

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Song of the Day #4,260: ‘I’m Only Me When I’m With You’ – Taylor Swift

My upcoming Taylor Swift album ranking is based on the original lineups of each record, not the bonus editions that tack on several songs.

Swift has released a couple of dozen non-album tracks over the course of her career. I listened to just about all of them and my overall consensus is that they were all smart exclusions. That’s usually the case, isn’t it?

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Song of the Day #4,259: ‘Only the Young’ – Taylor Swift

I’ve had a complicated relationship with Taylor Swift over the past ten years. She is an extremely talented songwriter and performer who too often gives in to her worst tendencies. Something holds me back from embracing her completely.

This might seem like an odd comparison, but my reaction to Swift reminds me of my reaction to Quentin Tarantino. His movies are undeniably great, but he can’t help but slip in a few moments here and there that turn me off and keep me from buying in entirely.

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Song of the Day #4,171: ‘Never Grow Up’ – Taylor Swift

Best Albums of the 2010s – #17
Speak Now – Taylor Swift (2010)

On past lists like this, I’ve had single artists dominate with multiple appearances. I realize that can be a little boring for the reader, and it ends up pushing out acts deserving of a mention.

So this time around I am limiting myself to just one title per artist, though I will list other albums of theirs that might have otherwise made the cut.

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Song of the Day #4,095: ‘Cornelia Street’ – Taylor Swift

Concluding my countdown of the songs on Taylor Swift’s Lover.

3. ‘False God’ – I wrote a little bit about this one a few weeks ago, calling it my early favorite after a couple of listens to the album. I still love it enough to have it at #3, though the two tracks below have crept their way to the top spots. This is the sexiest song on the album and a whole new sound for Swift that she pulls off beautifully.

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Song of the Day #4,094: ‘Paper Rings’ – Taylor Swift

Continuing my countdown of the songs on Taylor Swift’s Lover.

6. ‘Soon You’ll Get Better’ – This is a devastating song about Swift’s mother’s cancer, performed with the Dixie Chicks (her mom’s favorite band). It’s nice to see Swift use her star power to give the Dixie Chicks some high-profile exposure, years after they were run out of country music for daring to speak out against then-President Bush. The lesson of their blacklisting is likely one Swift took to heart, partly explaining her own political silence. I’d like to think country music has changed since then, but the truth is Swift is a full-blown pop star now so she is no longer bound by those constraints. Meanwhile, women — politically outspoken or not — continue to have a hard time getting airplay on country radio.

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Song of the Day #4,093: ‘The Archer’ – Taylor Swift

Continuing my countdown of the songs on Taylor Swift’s Lover.

9. ‘Daylight’ – The album’s delicate closing track looks back at the rocky road — romantically and professionally — Swift has taken to arrive at a place where she finally feels fulfilled. On Lover, Swift seems more self-aware and more at peace than ever, and this song does a lovely job of describing how she got there.

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