Midnights’ message appeals to more than just Swifties

Review by EllieCusick

Image Source: Taylor Swift Official Site

After Taylor Swift’s new album Midnights came out on October 21, it was expected that her songs would be trending on almost every platform. The lyrics “It’s me. Hi! I’m the problem, it’s me” from “Anti-Hero” probably haunt every TikTok or Instagram reel user every day. For those who aren’t waiting five hours on Ticketmaster to spend too much money for a ticket to Swift’s Eras tour, her songs that sound as though they were written for radio stations may be unbearable. However, the empowering and relatable messages behind the songs featured in Midnights might actually make the album worth the hype diehard Swifties are crediting it with.

In the song “Lavender Haze,” Swift reveals how she has rejected the misogynistic criticism of others depicting her as a merely “a one-night stand or a wife,” and has instead chosen to define herself. Although the song may seem basic when listening to it, her encouragement of defying conformity provides the depth necessary for the song to be worthy of its placement as the first song on the album. It is difficult to hate a song that young women are listening to that is inspiring them to ignore the labels placed upon them.

Swift also illustrates a regret for growing out of her childhood too quickly. In Midnights’ song “Would’ve, Could’ve, Should’ve,” she reflects on the age at which she abandoned her youth and faced maturity. The song depicts Swift realizing she couldn’t regain the innnocence of youth and wishes she hadn’t deserted it so hastily.

Contrasting with most popular songs, “Would’ve, Could’ve, Should’ve” relays advice that parents often give to their children. With an artist adored by millions encouraging the same behavior, young adults are more prone to follow and listen to this message. This message is certainly relevant and necessary considering how many middle schoolers dress as if they’re in college, even though they’re still waiting on puberty.

Regardless of one’s taste in music, Midnights is certainly worth a listen. Each song unfolds Swift’s realizations throughout her life, which advances her songs beyond the label of being a mere pop hit. Midnights is for parents who try to teach their kids these lessons daily, for the teens who have faced something similar and for the women who have experienced misogyny and have been conditioned to conformity.

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