North East Post
A Voice of the Free Press
Jeremy Williams-Chalmers
Arts Correspondent
1:02 AM 20th April 2024

Albums: Taylor Swift The Tortured Poets Department.

Taylor Swift The Tortured Poets Department.

Fortnight (ft. Post Malone); The Tortured Poets Department; My Boy Only Breaks His Favorite Toy; Down Bad; So Long, London; But Daddy I Love Him; Fresh Out The Slammer; Florida!!! (ft. Florence & The Machine); Guilty As Sin?; Who's Afraid Of Little Old Me?; I Can Fix Him (No Really I Can); loml; I Can Do It With A Broken Heart; The Smallest Man Who Ever Lived; The Alchemy; Clara Bow

Label: Republic

A new Taylor Swift album is always going to be a big talking point. The country/pop/folk singer, one of the most successful artists of recent times, has long since defied early critics and career detractors to become the definitive voice of a generation. While she has maintained a dignified presence within the media, the breakup of her 6-year relationship with Joe Alwyn has seen more focus on her private life in the last year.

From a much-criticised relationship with the often controversial Matt Healy through to her very heavily publicised relationship with Travis Kelcie, Swift is taking the moment to shed her own light on all the aforementioned beaus in her latest album, The Tortured Poets Department.

Named after a chat group Joe Alwyn has with Paul Mescal,The Tortured Poets Department is very much a break-up album, yet, in true Swift style, it is difficult to decipher which of the lyrics fully relate to reality and which have been crafted in the realms of storytelling. The album's title track, with its nods to Patti Smith and Dylan Thomas, clearly connects several moments to her and Alwyn.

With very little really revealed about the album's sonic direction ahead of release, fans will be thrilled to hear elements of all the sounds that have shaped her career to date present within the album's 16 songs.

Boasting her most cutting lyrics to date, it is clear why she has stated this is her most cathartic release to date. At its poppiest, it delivers the subtle bounce of My Boy Only Breaks His Favorite Toy, the awesome Florence & The Machine featuring Florida, and the dance melancholy of I Can Do It With A Broken Heart. But it's not just the pop content that dominates the radio waves for years to come; it's the heart and soul of So Long, London, and the lush introspection of Guilty As Sin? that make the album shine.

Taylor Swift always ensures her albums sound like Taylor Swift, but the skill of her craft is delivering something unique to that album at the same time. This is where the Tortured Poets Department excels. It is typical Taylor, with bark and bite.