‘Red (Taylor’s Version)’ Review

Taylor Swift by Beth Garrabrant for Red (Taylor’s Version)

On Friday, November 12, Taylor Swift released her second re-recorded album, this time of her fourth studio-album “Red.” The album was announced to be her next re-record back in June and the singer had the entire world highly-anticipating the album by the week of its release, even having the Empire State Building in New York glowing red. The album dropped and immediately started breaking records, Red (Taylor’s Version) became the most streamed album by a female artist in one day and Taylor herself became the most streamed female artist in one day. So, what made the album so powerful? Let’s cut to the songs.

Some re-recorded songs I’d like to highlight are I Knew You Were Trouble, All Too Well, We Are Never Ever Getting Back Together, and Sad Beautiful Tragic, of course “(Taylor’s Version)” First off, I Knew You Were Trouble (Taylor’s Version), in my opinion, strictly, is vocally better than the original. I Knew You Were Trouble was a powerhouse hit to begin with, so it is no surprise that the song is absolutely amazing. Taylor definitely made it hit even harder this time, with the instrumentals being even more defined with Dolby Atmos on some streaming platforms, like Apple Music.

Now, for the fan favorite, All Too Well (Taylor’s Version). This song has always been absolutely astonishing to listen to, as you could always hear every detail of emotion in Taylor’s voice. Taylor defined that emotion even more on her version of the song. Each and every line seemed like Taylor was holding your hand and walking you through every detail she mentions in the song, which includes lyrics like “we’re singing in the car getting lost upstate” and “I walked through the door with you, the air was cold.” The song was just as astonishing as it was before, if not even more.

Next, we have the one and only, We Are Never Ever Getting Back Together (Taylor’s Version). This chart topping, number one hit, absolutely did it all over again. The nostalgic feeling the song gives when listening to it for the first time all over again, is almost like you’re feeling the anger she was feeling. The bubbly pop song, definitely could earn itself another number one almost a decade later.

Finally, the last song that stood out the most to me was my personal favorite, Sad Beautiful Tragic (Taylor’s Version). This song’s bone chilling lyrics always have and will continue to hit my core. The vocal arrangement as she sings about a past affair, blew me away yet again. Taylor always has chillingly amazing lyrics, but this song will always be one that sticks out to me.

In these re-recorded versions of her albums, Taylor has added in a few new song that she titles “From The Vault” tracks, which are songs that were written for that specific album, but didn’t make it off the cutting room floor. Here are some from “Red (Taylor’s Version) that completely amazed me.

Starting with Nothing New (Taylor’s Version) [From The Vault] (feat. Phoebe Bridgers). The song’s chilling lyrics about being a shiny new toy to the public, but suddenly fading away and becoming just another artist, make this song one of the best songs on the album. You don’t have to be in the public eye to understand and relate to every word that the two sing on this track. Through instruments and lyrics, Phoebe and Taylor make this one of the best songs in either of their discographies. It is absolutely dreamy, and amazingly beautiful.

Onto songs like Babe (Taylor’s Version) [From The Vault] and Better Man (Taylor’s Version) [From The Vault], songs in which Swift had originally given the country sensations, Sugarland and Little Big Town. Both these songs keep the same vibe as the original versions, but Swift gives them her own feel and gives them the ‘Taylor Swift’ stamp she has on all of her songs.

There are very few, but some “From The Vault” tracks on Red (Taylor’s Version) that have that bubbly pop vibe. These tracks include The Very First Night (Taylor’s Version) [From The Vault] and Message In A Bottle (Taylor’s Version) [From The Vault]. These two songs give off that fun, happy, cozy Taylor Swift feeling all her pop songs have. These two are happy songs about being in love and being happy for the first time in a long time. These two are very close seconds to the best “From The Vault” tracks.

Last, but definitely not the least. The most powerful, not to mention, lyrically and vocally the best track on the album overall, All Too Well (10 Minute Version) (Taylor’s Version) [From The Vault]. Lets talk about some history on the song before completely diving into it. Taylor talked about this “10 minute version” of the song back in an interview in 2012, saying that a 10 minute song couldn’t be put on an album, therefore she had to cut verses (some of them being her favorite lines in the song). Since All Too Well was a fan favorite track since the album release, the fans didn’t just leave this information sit, they begged for the 10 minute version almost everyday for almost 10 years. Taylor finally mentioned that this lyrical, bone chilling, masterpiece would be featured on her version of the album. OK, now lets dive completely in. To start with, I think this 10 minute version is so perfectly written and sang by Taylor. The instruments almost perfectly match the way Swift sings on this track, through the backing choir and the layered strings, its chilling. I think Swift perfectly describes a fallen love and being bruised from it, through every line on this ten minute track. It would need a whole article on its own to describe how amazing and perfect this song is.

Overall, I think this was another perfect re-recording of a classic Taylor Swift album. Each and every detail was absolutely astonishing. Make sure to check out “Red (Taylor’s Version)” wherever you listen to your music.


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