It was not even five months since the release of folklore when Taylor Swift, my favourite artist of all time, announced on social media that she was releasing evermore, her second album of 2020.
I tried and tried and tried but I just found it so boring. But I am sooo in love with evermore and have listened to it an insane number of times in the last two or so weeks. In fact I am listening to it right now as I work on this post and it is no longer sitting right with me how I can be so O.B.S.E.S.S.E.D with one album but be bored by its sister-predecessor. Yaani I am itching to write about evermore so badly but on the other hand I do not like folklore. So I have decided to give folklore a few more tries in the new year as I work on my Q1 posts.
I gave it a few more tries in January and now I quite like the 1, my tears ricochet, mirrorball, august and mad woman. And I LOVE the last great american dynasty, exile, seven, this is me trying, invisible string, betty, peace and hoax.
Please, picture me in the trees
I hit my peak at seven
Feet in the swing over the creek
I was too scared to jump in
Green was the color of the grass where I used to read at Centennial Park
I used to think I would meet somebody there
Those are the opening lines to seven and invisible string respectively and aki this is me every single time I hear those lyrics:
I also loooove these lyrics in peace, one of the few songs in folklore that is rooted in Taylor’s personal life:
All these people think love’s for show
But I would die for you in secret
Your integrity makes me seem small
You paint dreamscapes on the wall
I talk shit with my friends
It’s like I’m wasting your honor
Give you the silence that only comes when two people understand each other
Family that I chose now that I see your brother as my brother
evermore was released on December 11, 2020 and I got around to listening to it the following Monday. I was apprehensive at first because I did not like its sister-predecessor at all, but by the time I had finished listening to the album it was clear that I liked it much more than I liked folklore at first listen.
I fell in love the way you fall asleep: slowly, and then all at once.
At first I played evermore every other day and I liked it a little bit more each time I listened to it, but by Christmas I was completely in love with the album and was playing it every single day. EVERY. SINGLE. DAY! By the time I was putting up my Kwaheri 2020 post I really was O.B.S.E.S.S.E.D with the album as there was nothing I loved more than smoking up and singing and dancing to evermore. I even had to ban myself from playing it during my baecation in Diani and when I came back to Nairobi I allowed myself to play it thrice a week max. Lol. For real though.
My immediate favourites from the album were gold rush, ‘tis the damn season and no body, no crime but it was not long before I also fell in love with champagne problems and tolerate it. While I still LOVE those five songs, ivy and cowboy like me are currently my favourite tracks on the album.
gold rush is the third song on the album and it is easily one of the standout tracks on evermore. This lyric in particular always takes me back to my January baecation:
And the coastal town we wandered ’round had never seen a love as pure as it
I had wanted to use it as the Instagram caption to this photo:
But I forgot (😐) and went with ‘love lives here’ instead as my boyfriend had been saying that phrase to me repeatedly in the weeks leading up to our baecation.
Infidelity is a recurring theme in evermore and the first song she sings about cheating, while making it look so desirable if I might add, is ‘tis the damn season:
So we could call it even
You could call me babe for the weekend
‘Tis the damn season write this down
I’m stayin’ at my parents’ house
And the road not taken looks real good now
And it always leads to you in my hometown
I parkеd my car right between the Methodist and thе school that used to be ours
Love it! Love it!! Love it!!!
Ladies raise your hand if you have ever fallen for a fuckboy.
I wait by the door like I’m just a kid
Use my best colors for your portrait
Lay the table with the fancy shit
And watch you tolerate it
If it’s all in my head tell me now
Tell me I’ve got it wrong somehow
I know my love should be celebrated
But you tolerate it
Those are lyrics to the tolerate it chorus, a song I came to like really quickly because it is just sooo relatable to anyone who has ever been shown dust by these goddamn city boys.
For the longest time no body, no crime was MY JAM because it is just sooo much fun to sing along to. I mean it is a goddamn murder mystery FFS!! I love every single thing about the song, from how she says “reports” in the second verse, to how Este’s IRL sister Danielle swears “she was with me dude” in the bridge, and everything in between. I really hope she releases a music video for the song. A 13 😉 minute music video because a visual, the way only Tay can do it, would be LIFE!!!
As stated ivy and cowboy like me are currently my favourite songs on the album. ivy is about infidelity and just like in ‘tis the damn season she makes cheating look sooo desirable.
My pain fits in the palm of your freezing hand
Taking mine but it’s been promised to another
Oh, I can’t stop you putting roots in my dreamland
My house of stone, your ivy grows
And now I’m covered in you
I am in a very healthy, very monogamous relationship but fucking hell I always sing that chorus sooo goddamn loudly because the way Tay writes and sings about infidelity in evermore makes cheating feel so desirable. Lol. For real though.
How’s one to know?
I’d live and die for moments that we stole
On begged and borrowed time
So tell me to run
Or dare to sit and watch what we’ll become
And drink my husband’s wine
Damn Tay! Now I want to sit and watch what my imaginary lover and I will become as we drink my imaginary husband’s wine. Lol.
You’re a cowboy like me
Perched in the dark
Telling all the rich folks anything they wanna hear
Like it could be love
I could be the way forward
Only if they pay for it
You’re a bandit like me
Eyes full of stars
Hustling for the good life
Never thought I’d meet you here
It could be love
We could be the way forward
And I know I’ll pay for it
Taylor is one of the best songwriters of my generation and I find it so masterful how she managed to rhyme ‘way forward’ and ‘pay for it’. When you see it on paper it does not look particularly masterful, but when you hear how she rhymes the two in song it is rather mind-blowing.
I was also using words I always wanted to use — kind of bigger, flowerier, prettier words, like “epiphany,” in songs. I always thought, “Well, that’ll never track on pop radio,” but when I was making this record, I thought, “What tracks? Nothing makes sense anymore. If there’s chaos everywhere, why don’t I just use the damn word I want to use in the song?
That is an excerpt from Sir Paul McCartney & Taylor Swift’s Musician on Musicians Rolling Stone interview that came out in November last year. So I find it rather comical how, after using all these big words in folklore and evermore, she starts off cowboy like me by saying:
And the tennis court was covered up with some tent-like thing
Some fun facts:
- The track marjorie is named after and about her maternal grandmother, an opera singer who died when Taylor was 12.
- Dorothea is the narrator of ‘tis the damn season and the song dorothea is narrated by the person she had the affair with in her hometown of Tupelo when she went home for the holidays. I still play evermore a lot so a few weeks ago my boyfriend started calling me Dorothea, adding it to the long list of nicknames he has for me.
- champagne problems was cowritten by Taylor and her boyfriend Joe Alwyn who used the pseudonym William Bowery. He also cowrote coney island and evermore, as well as exile and betty on folklore. Taylor made history in 2010 when she became the youngest artist ever to win Album of the Year at the Grammys for Fearless. She made history again when she became one of six people, and the first woman, to win AotY twice at the 2016 Grammys for 1989. She made history for the third time just over two weeks ago at this year’s Grammys when she became the first woman, and fourth person overall, to win AotY thrice and this is part of what she said in her acceptance speech:
I wanna thank… Joe, the first person I play every single song that I write. I had the best time writing songs with you in quarantine.
As I conclude, for those who may not know about the ongoing controversy regarding the ownership of the masters of her first six studio albums, Taylor put up this post on her Tumblr page on June 30, 2019:
Not only does Taylor not own the masters to her first six albums, she also cannot perform any of the songs from those albums without permission from Scooter Braun. The last update she gave regarding this grossly unfair situation was on November 16, 2020:
Fearless (Taylor’s version) will be out on April 9th and I am the most excited to listen to it in its entirety. I had not listened to any Taylor album in its entirety before 1989 and after her nemesis bought her back catalogue there was no way I was going to listen to them because I am not about to give Scooter Braun any of my coins. So I cannot fucking wait to give Taylor my coins and listen to Fearless (Taylor’s version) on April 9th and learn why it made her the youngest person ever to win the Grammy for AotY at only 19 years.