Taylor Swift - Midnights
Oct 21, 2022 (updated Oct 21, 2022)
I had very, very different expectations about the album itself. This is the fourth (!) album that Taylor is co-producing with Jack Antonoff, the man who made for us Folklore and "NFR!". A genius producer is always good, but not when a genius producer begins to exploit his individual and unique style on the same artist. With Lana Del Rey, he was only under contract for 2 albums, and while the first one was a cult hit, that received universal acclaim and was called not just one of the best albums of the decade, but one of the best albums of all time, the second was mediocre (I'm talking about Chemtrails Over The Country Club).

In the case of Taylor Swift, the third of their collaborations, Lover, was very, very glazed and befittingly loving. Folklore and Evermore are more intimate, foresty, introverted and generally extremely beautiful works that perfectly fit into the mood and melancholy of the whole world at the time of the global lockdown of 2020. And at the expense of Midnights, I had absolutely no idea that it would be stylistically at all, because in general it was absolutely impossible to predict it and the album could be anything - noise rock, jazz, ambient or even dark cabaret. The very concept of night thoughts and 13 sleepless nights opened up a huge field for Taylor and Jack to experiment, which could provide her with incredibly high-quality and interesting material. And do you think she took advantage of this at least 1%?

Midnights is one solid and second-rate aftertaste of her previous eras and styles. This is 1989, but which is more minimalistic and not as massive. This is Reputation, but which does not piss in your face with its pathos. It's Lover, but instead of pink icing on the cakes, it's black mascara. Taylor tries to imitate Lorde and her Melodrama, but in the end it does not end with anything good - everything that could be explored and plowed up in pop music, Taylor has already plowed. She basically shaped her style, which she did in 1989, completely ridding it of any traces of past country music. She made it more flashy and brash on Reputation when it was needed in connection with her then scandal with Kanye West. She went into a more art-pop direction with Lover, went into silence and herself with Folklore and Evermore.

And now she's stuck with what was to be expected - she had absolutely no new ideas for this album, it doesn't have any distinctive sound, backbone, pillar or skeleton, it's just a jelly indie-pop nothingness that just tries to look like something Taylor has boasted in the past. Midnight has no plot, no background or story to shape this album and give it a look. She just announced it at the ceremony, then tormented us with song titles for 2 months before the official release, just sold us this album on pre-order 4 times with this stupid clock in the form of four limited vinyls and CDs and the devil knows what else. Well, she also made money on Lana Del Rey by simply giving her backing vocals and putting her on the list of features, ultimately disappointing both fandoms. Although I don't know, maybe Lana herself abandoned a full-fledged independent part and ended up with a minimal contribution to the song, we don't know the whole truth, so I don't want to support this hate.

This is the moment when it's time to quit pop music and its exploitation and look for new horizons in your discography. This is the moment when Taylor really plunged knee-deep into the quicksand of stagnation and it was time for her to escape from this agonizing state. This is the moment when Taylor is tired, and we are tired with her. And I honestly believe that she will still be able to find the strength to take a break, gather her thoughts and new ideas and come to us in a new way. She has already conquered all conceivable and unimaginable heights, she took heaps of awards and became an artist of the decade, and this is all before 30 years old. Taylor is already a lifetime legend, but she is still young and beautiful. After Midnight, her astral is open for a wide variety of changes, experiments and career turns. And I hope that this time she will not miss this chance by herself, chasing profit.

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