Stephen Smith, CFNN Reporter

Taylor Swift’s “Folklore” album cover.

Taylor Swift is one of the most famous singers and ambassadors of modern pop music. With her success of 10 Grammy’s and 337 other awards over her career, it is true to say, she’s a force in the industry to be reckoned with.

Swift announced on July 23rd that she had finished her 8th studio album entitled “folklore,” and it would drop the proceeding day, July 24th. With no prior promotion, music video announcements or singles, it was a complete shock to the music industry.

“In my isolation, my imagination has run wild, and this album is the result, a collection of songs and stories that flowed like a stream of consciousness,” said Swift.

“folklore” has broken the record for the longest running record on the Billboard Hot 100 since Drake’s 2016 “Views” album. This means Swift has had the highest performing album in four years, even with no prior promotion and on top of being in the midst of a pandemic. 

The alternative album cover
for “folklore”.

Swift released a music video with her debut single “cardigan,” which shot to the #1 spot on Billboard’s Top 100. The Billboard Top 100 is chart rankings based on sales (physical and digital), radio play, and online streaming in the United States.

“folklore” is a storytelling album, where Swift shows her artistic ability as a songwriter. Sonically, the album is loaded with isolated chords and piano ballads, along with the very heartfelt song, “peace,” which is mostly a cappella (a solo voice without musical accompaniment), Swift brings a new style from her prerequisite albums, taking a new twist on pop music.

The beginning of the album starts with a track entitled “the 1,” in which Swift delegates the pros and cons of her previous relationships, while lyrically playing with the “chosen one” symbolism of a relationship.

The next track is the fan favorite “cardigan,” in which Swift dives more into an artistic approach to her songwriting, using an extended metaphor to compare herself. 

“And when I felt like I was an old cardigan, under someone’s bed, you put me on and said I was your favorite,” from Taylor Swift’s song “Cardigan”.

Taylor Swift’s picture from the promotional

Swift continues to paint a narrative with stand alone story tracks such as “betty” and “the last great american dynasty”. These tracks are special because they contribute a narrative and bring the album’s root sound to life.

My personal favorite off of the album is a track entitled “exile”, featuring Bon Iver. This track complies the iconic essence of a classic Taylor heartbreak song. This song is a masterpiece, with full blown orchestral works behind Iver and Swift’s voice. Layered harmonies and a heartfelt bridge makes this song appealing to many audiences.

“‘I think I’ve seen this film before, and I didn’t like the ending,” from Taylor Swift’s “exile“.

Whether you’re a Swiftie or not, you can admit Taylor hit the nail right on the head with Folklore. With a metric score of 4.9 out of 5 stars, Swift outdid all her previous bodies of work with Folklore. Now you can go listen to Folklore and enjoy it like the 99% of Google users did!