Swfities’ Review of “The Tortured Poets Department”


Image Courtesy of Forbes

By MaggieMae Dethlefsen

Taylor Swift dropped her album The Tortured Poets Department on April 19. This album has been highly anticipated by fans for months now ever since when she made the announcement at the Grammy Awards. This will be her 11th studio album. Before the Grammys, many fans believed she was going to announce a release date for Reputation (Taylor’s Version) and were shocked when she said they were getting a whole new album with all new material. 

In anticipation of the release, my friends and I stayed up in order to listen to what Swift had in store for us in this album and we were not disappointed. The album was one filled with songs that we needed but didn’t know that we needed. It was a sixteen track album filled with “opinions and sentiments from a fleeting and fatalistic moment in time – one that was both sensational and sorrowful in equal measure.” On this album, she featured two artists: Post Malone and Florence + The Machine. 

The songs were beautifully written and show the loss, love, and the raw emotion that she felt in these moments of her life.  This includes her recent breakup with her long term boyfriend Joe Alwyn, her short relationship with Matty Healy, the difficulty of having to perform even when having personal issues behind the scenes, being cheated on, and different stages of grief are depicted throughout the album. 

 “This album solidifies Taylor Swift as one of the greatest poets of our generation,” sophomore English major Elliana Arnold said. 

 As if the first sixteen songs weren’t enough, she surprised fans by releasing The Tortured Poets Department: The Anthology, which had 15 more tracks on it. 

This is Taylor’s most emotional and personal album to date. It really brings us into her raw emotion as she goes through hard times in her life, but we also see the beginning of a new start in  songs like “The Alchemy,” believed by many Swifties to be related to Travis Kelce. Many believe this due to the lyrics in the song, which writes,  “There was no chance trying to be the greatest in the league/ Where’s the trophy?/ He just comes runnin’ over to me.” This gets tied to Travis Kelce because as seen in his Super Bowl appearance before celebrating with his team once the game was over he went straight over to Taylor and celebrated with her. With this connection being made many believe this song to be one of the love songs on this new album. 

Though it is hard to choose a favorite track from this album because they are all amazing, some of my favorites have been “Who’s Afraid of Little Old Me” and “I Can Do It With a Broken Heart.” These songs are a little more upbeat than other tracks found on this album. I think that the lyric that really stuck out to me and stuck with me the most from one of these songs was: They said, “Babe, you gotta fake it ’til you make it” and I did/ Lights, camera, bitch, smile/ Even when you wanna die. This is one that stuck with me because it describes an experience that many have experienced of not feeling at your best but still having to do something and pretend like you are okay through the experience. It is just so beautifully expressed in “I Can Do It With a Broken Heart.”

Most fans are in agreement that every song left you wanting more and it was very hard to rank songs in order of preference because each song gave the listener something that just perfectly resided with them and their experiences in life. One thing is certain with Swift fans everywhere though, this album has become quite quickly a household favorite with many Swifities. 

Image by MaggieMae Dethlefsen

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