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REVIEW: 1989 (Taylor’s Version) Album

Taylor Swift released her 4th re-recorded album on October 27th, here is the hot take.
Taylor Swifts Announcement photo for her new re-released album, 1989(Taylor’s Version) (Taylor Swift Web)

Back on Oct.27, 2014, Taylor Swift released her 5th studio album titled 1989. It is arguably one of the best pop albums ever created. 13 tracks were welcomed into the world, later dropping a deluxe version with three more songs along with three voice memos. Fast forward nine years to the day, Swift takes back her music from her old management team, Big Machine, owned by Scooter Braun, and makes it her own. She released the original 16 tracks along with five new vault songs and a newly recorded “Bad Blood” featuring Kendrick Lamar. The 1 hour and 21 minutes of newly released pop music from Taylor Swift will still be one of the boost pop songs, still topping charts as she grows in the music industry. 

Taylor Swift’s first six albums are referred to as the “stolen” albums for fans of Taylor Swift. They get the name of the stolen version because Taylor Swift does not own this music. They are her thoughts, emotions, feelings and lyrics, but it isn’t her work. Once they become re-recorded they are then Taylor’s Verison. To tell the difference between the two, her re-recorded versions will all have (Taylor’s Version) behind them. Swift will also change the album cover work, having a slight difference in her pose and outfits.

Track 1: Welcome to New York (Taylor’s Version) 

When this first played at 11:00 on Thursday night, I was so happy. I was really intrigued with the background vocals around 1 minute and 50 seconds. She starts by keeping the background vocal the same and in the last “Welcome to New York,” goes up an octave. It was a great song to start the album off then and it is still a great song to start the album off now. 

Track 2: Blank Space (Taylor’s Version)

In this song, you can hear the mischief in her voice. Her voice is more mature and you can tell she is healthier than in the original recording. In the re-recorded version, her voice is not as squeaky and high-pitched as the stolen version. 

Track 3: Style (Taylor’s Version)

This is one of the best songs on this album, in my personal opinion. I loved the guitar! The build of it always gets me especially when the beat drops.  Her voice was much richer and deeper. In the chorus, the “take me home” lyric was my favorite part of the song. She follows those lyrics with “Wooooah’s”. Many fans feel the guitar is different and do not feel it is as good as the original however to me it sounds superb.

Track 4: Out of the Woods (Taylor’s Version)

The drums and beat drops bring you back to 2014 like you are hearing it for the first time. There are keys going on in the back which is newly added. The production of the song was amazing. The keys were picked back up before she sang “yeah” before the bridge. In the song, she goes to a lower octave with her background vocals.

Track 5: All You Had to Do Was Stay (Taylor’s Version)

She did a really good job making it sound like the original. It starts off with a lower beat than the original. For the bridge, her voice was fuller when she sang “This was what you wanted”. There was nothing too special with the song but still done well.

Track 6: Shake It Off (Taylor’s Version)

In this song, it felt more echoey. I could sense that there were more drums. I enjoyed that Swift still added the giggle that she had in the stolen version. When it comes to the bridge she did a phenomenal job making it sound original, with the background vocals and laughing that happened. 

Track 7: I Wish You Would (Taylor’s Version)

I like that the guitar, in the beginning, was in a higher pitch and felt louder than the stolen version. I thoroughly enjoyed that you can still hear her breath into the microphone like the original.

Track 8: Bad Blood (Taylor’s Version)

This sounded just like the stolen version, she did a good job putting all her emotions into the song like she was back recording this song for the first time. Her voice sounds so much healthier and I really enjoy how deep it is in comparison to the stolen version. 

Track 9: Wildest Dreams (Taylor’s Version)

Taylor Swift released Taylor’s version of this song back on September 21, 2021. When this was first released all fans thought 1989 would definitely be the next re-release coming, however that was incorrect. Wildest Dreams (Taylor’s Version) is very mature in vocals. In the stolen version, you can hear the high pitch of her vocals and at times a little edgy and shaky, however in TV it is very well-rounded.

Track 10: How You Get The Girl (Taylor’s Version)

This wasn’t that popular of a song the first time the album was released, but I have a feeling this song will grow in streams. It somehow got more catchy since becoming Taylor’s version. 

Track 11: This Love (Taylor’s Version)

“This Love (Taylor’s version)” was already released before the album was announced. It was released back in 2022. Hearing the album now and not as a single made me love it even more. This album is all fast-paced pop songs, and then you get to this song and it is the complete opposite of everything you have been listening to. It is so gentle and she did a really good job re-recording it. 

Track 12: I Know Places (Taylor’s Version)

I love that she kept the track start at the beginning of the song and the microphone effect with her vocals at the beginning of the song. She put everything into her “AND WE RUN” and had a growl to her voice. I loved that part of the song so much!

Track 13: Clean (Taylor’s Version)

This song was a fan favorite, and there was a lot of hype around this song becoming Taylor’s. The bridge of this song made me cry. She sounded much healthier with her vocals. Everything was more fuller and richer as she sang.

Track 14: Wonderland (Taylor’s Version)

I absolutely adored hearing this song. It felt like I was hearing it for the first time again. I love the drums in this song. I love the fact that she kept her voice cracking when she sang “Ohhh” at 3 minutes and 17 seconds.

Track 15: You Are In Love (Taylor’s Version)

She captured the moment of falling in love and I think she did it better this time than the first time she recorded it. Her voice is so gentle in this version. 

Track 16: New Romantics (Taylor’s Version)

This is by far one of my favorites. Many fans don’t seem too pleased and feel it sounds different. But I love the sound of the guitars and drums in this. I know I can still dance to it and enjoy it just as much if not more than I did with the stolen version.

Every re-release of an album, Taylor gifts her fans with vault songs. These are songs that did not make the album the first time. 1989 Taylor’s version gifted fans with 5 new vault songs.

Track 17: “Sl*t!” (Taylor’s Version) (From the Vault) 

This was the first song from her vault collection for the album. This was not what I was expecting. It is the perfect balance between an upbeat song and a slow song. One of the smartest lyrics in this song is “In a world of boys he’s a gentleman.”  I think this song is about being in a lovestruck era of a relationship.

Track 18: Say Don’t Go (Taylor’s Version) (From the Vault)

This is on the rise to being one of the fan-favorite vault songs. I love that when she sings “Say Don’t Go”, there is an echo of her saying it after every word.  The production of this was done really well and her storytelling skills were impeccable. 

Track 19: Now That We Don’t Talk (Taylor’s Version) (From the Vault)

This is my personal favorite vault track. Being the shortest of the vault songs, I love the production of the song. This song as well as other vault songs gives off Midnight’s track vibes which could be because they were recording around the same time. It is the shortest of the vault songs but she gets her point across really well and you are able to picture different visuals while she sings.

Track 20: Suburban Legends (Taylor’s Version) (From the Vault)

In the bridge of the song I drew that she was waiting for someone or something to come and it never happened so she is reflecting. This isn’t my favorite song out of all of the vault songs, but it is certainly not terrible at all. 

Track 21: Is It Over Now? (Taylor’s Version) (From the Vault)

“Is It Over Now” is speculated to be about pop star and former boyfriend Harry Styles. Fans took to heart the lyrics she was saying by flooding Styles’ most recent Instagram post with comments. The song discussed feelings Swift had while the relationship was coming to an end. I loved the build-up of the vocals at the beginning of the song. Every time she sings “Oh lord” I get so excited. When she sings “run-in” I love that her voice goes up an octave.

Track 22: Bad Blood featuring Kendrick Lamar (Taylor’s Version)

I found it so exciting that the rapper, Kendrick Lamar, went back into the studio to re-record their version of Bad Blood. This remix of the song has become a fan favorite, especially the lines “You forgive, you forget but you never let it go”.  I thoroughly enjoyed it, and am happy that I have a Taylor’s Version of this song.

After giving this album a listen, I have somehow fallen in love with it all over again. It has reminded me why I love it so much. Out of 5 stars, I would score this album a 4.5. There is not one skip on the album, and all the new vault tracks add to the album so much. Taylor Swift has done it once again being the mastermind she is.

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About the Contributor
Lucy Prescott, Print Co-Editor-In-Chief; Yearbook Photography Editor
(she/her) Lucy Prescott is a senior at West High. This is her first year on the Wahawk Insider staff. This is her second year apart of the Wahawk yearbook, serving as  the  photography editor this year. Outside of involvement with West, you can find her looking up new concerts to attend, listening to Harry Styles, or taking pictures.
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    ArloNov 6, 2023 at 11:43 am

    I did not really like it personalty. Taylor is not my type of artiest