For months, I attempted to distance myself from Taylor Swift. After the release of “1989,” I realized that her music was no longer for me, and there was no need to listen to it and be a hater. However, every time I logged onto Twitter, I would run into some form of Taylor Swift news. Last Friday, when she released her new single, “Look What You Made Me Do,” it was impossible to scroll through my timeline and not see anything Swift-related.
At one point in time, I loved Taylor Swift. I thought she was the sweetest little curly-haired, blonde girl from Pennsylvania singing relatable country-pop music. "Teardrops on my Guitar" was the song I would always listen to on my iPod shuffle. Her songs held authenticity and honesty. I felt as if I could feel her raw emotions through each note.
When I first listened to "1989," I could tell Swift was changing the sound of her music. Each song either had generic pop sounds or copied the styles of other artists. For instance, the song "Wildest Dreams" gave off Lana Del Rey vibes. “Look What You Made Me Do” sounds as if she is still trying to find a way to rebrand herself — in the wrong way. It sounds like any generic pop song.
I feel like Swift is too focused on what her critics are saying. Since many, including myself, believe that Swift always places herself as the victim in any situation and has issues owning up to her mistakes, she decided to mention this in her song. Swift was hoping for a bold comeback like post-2007 Britney Spears, but her song came out as a corny, stressed attempt of what could have been a simple middle finger to the public.
One would think the situation couldn’t be more embarrassing ... until watching the video. In the video, Swift displays herself insulting past versions of herself while acknowledging the talk surrounding her. With both the video and the song tied together, everything just seemed like an attempt at a response no one really asked for.
Taylor Swift will continue to be known as the snake exposed by Kanye and Kim, the one who continues to add fuel to an unnecessary beef with Katy Perry and, of course, the poor victim. In my eyes, there is no way to rebrand those negative characteristics. Rather than continuing to act “tough” and “stick it to the man,” Taylor should focus on admitting the mistakes she has made and turn back to music that was truly her. Before, she had such an authentic voice, and now she has lost it in trying to appeal to the masses and come across as a “badass.”
Editor's Note: To hear the opposing side, read Abigail Hall's pro-Taylor Swift column.