What critics are saying about Taylor Swift’s double album

Taylor Swift’s latest album, The Tortured Poets Department, has sparked a range of reactions from music critics. Some praise Swift for her raw emotion and vulnerability, while others find it a bit too melodramatic. 

The double album, consisting of The Tortured Poets Department and TTPD: The Anthology, brings the total number of new songs to 31, providing listeners with a vast amount of music to parse through.

It features appearances from the US rapper Post Malone on the lead single “Fortnight,” and Florence Welch, of the English band Florence + the Machine. Physical copies of the album feature an original poem from Fleetwood Mac’s Stevie Nicks.

Critics, who were mostly positive on Friday, have highlighted Swift’s willingness to embrace her messiest and most chaotic tendencies, creating an album with a proudly villainous energy. 

Variety called it “audacious” and “transfixing” and “the Taylor Swift-est Taylor Swift record ever”, while Rolling Stone deemed it “wildly ambitious and gloriously chaotic”. But the NME said the album contained “some of her most cringe-inducing lines yet” and “lacks the genuinely interesting shifts that have punctuated Swift’s career so far”.

The Los Angeles Times’ Mikael Wood commends Swift for “owning her chaos and messiness,” stating that the album is a heel turn with a distinctly villainous vibe.

Some critics have criticised the album for its dense vocabulary and potential overindulgence. However, many appreciate Swift’s willingness to take risks and push boundaries in her music. 

The New York Times’ pop music critic, for example, praises Swift for her boldness and candidness, stating that “The Tortured Poets Department” is one of her most audacious albums to date.

Overall, while critics have mixed feelings about Taylor Swift’s latest release, they seem to agree that it is a significant and noteworthy addition to her discography.

On Friday Swift described the album as “an anthology of new works that reflect events, opinions and sentiments from a fleeting and fatalistic moment in time – one that was both sensational and sorrowful in equal measure.

“This period of the author’s life is now over, the chapter closed and boarded up,” she continued. “There is nothing to avenge, no scores to settle once wounds have healed. And upon further reflection, a good number of them turned out to be self-inflicted.”


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