The Tower version of “Red Taylor’s Version”

The Tower version of Red Taylors Version

Cecile Walsh '24 and Daily Jogan '24

As many of our friends know, both of us are avid Taylor Swift fans, constantly freaking out over updates and explaining every Easter egg in sight to anyone who will listen. So, when she came out with Red (Taylor’s Version), it’s no surprise that both of us were incredibly excited, immediately becoming a part of the 90 million streams it received on the first day of its release.

Taylor Swift re-recording her first six albums is something that is uncommon in the music industry, but in her case, it was deemed necessary. They are being re-recorded to give her the ownership to her “masters” or her first six albums, which were sold without her permission. With the re-release of the standard albums, she is also releasing multiple songs that are “from the vault”, or songs she had written during their respective era, but didn’t make the original cut.

As far as the album itself goes, her new vocals parallel the original album in a seamless way for the most part. While her voice has naturally matured and sounds more full in many of the more dramatic songs, it still feels very similar to the old ones, which accomplished the goals of the re-records.

With that being said, on some of the original singles such as the popular “We Are Never Ever Getting Back Together” and “22”, her new voice doesn’t provoke the same enthusiasm as fans saw in the original 2012 tracks. While the songs still have an upbeat composition, the vocals did not make us want to stand up and dance as much as we were prepared for.

While the production remains incredibly similar on the majority of the songs, some songs such as “Girl At Home” have notable changes making it hard to remember the original song. The pop tune and stronger vocals put the song higher on our overall ranking. Other songs such as the long-awaited “Everything Has Changed” featuring Ed Sheeran are more mature in a way that only improves the song and makes us yearn to listen to it more.

Admittedly, we weren’t expecting to love the vault tracks because those from Fearless (Taylor’s Version), released in April of this year, didn’t exceed expectations as much as we had hoped. However, the vault tracks from Red (Taylor’s Version), make the album feel more complete, complex and overall increase the quality of the album. In songs like “Message In A Bottle” or “The Very First Night”, Swift brings more of a pop element that makes you feel as if you are in a coming of age romance movie or transported back to 2012 in the best way imaginable.

With other vault songs, like “Nothing New” featuring Phoebe Bridgers and “Forever Winter”, they bring a more emotional perspective to the album and allow you to step in Swift’s shoes more effectively, and feel all types of emotions that did not seem possible to experience prior to listening. To be quite frank, they make you want to stand outside and breathe in the crisp fall air.

On all of Swift’s albums, there is a common theme of her “Track 5” being the most emotionally vulnerable song on the album. The long hinted at and awaited ten-minute version of the memorable Track 5, “All Too Well”, was heard for the first time and we lost our minds and have yet to recover completely. The new song included close to 5 more minutes of the song and heartbreaking lyrics that twist the knife even further.

Overall, “Red (Taylor’s Version)” is well worth the listen, and anyone who has listened will most likely be quick to agree. Although some songs we felt did miss the mark with their new rendition, there are enough songs that exceed our expectations to balance the album out. While it is lengthy, time flies by and leaves you paralyzed by the sad, beautiful, tragic listening experience.