My amiable editors at Picky Bastards gently chided me for, you know, not exactly reviewing the last album I was assigned. I promised myself I’d do better this time. Boy, this is a rough one. I hate to disappoint my editors. I’m used to disappointing myself.
I will review the album: It’s not good. My daughter loves Taylor Swift and says this album is in her top three Taylor albums. This is the same person who said Beyonce was overrated so take that with a megaton of salt.
Let’s start off by saying I like Taylor Swift. Sometimes quite a bit. She eventually and emphatically won that Kanye battle, no? She has a big shackle of good songs that will one day be in a jukebox musical called ‘Inexplicably Sad’. I will probably go see it. I will buy a $20 gin and tonic and cry.
I have now made it to the fourth paragraph before mentioning Jack Antonoff. He’s created quite a stir on social media, hasn’t he? It’s odd that there is so much discourse about a producer. But, let me pile on by saying that this guy is terrible. Imagine washing out a kick drum. And then doing it again. And again. Someone needs to stage an intervention with Taylor. Bring an acoustic drum set!
The first song, ‘Lavender Haze’ is underwhelming. This Antonoff character produced Lorde’s fantastic ‘Green Light.’ That song ripped and accentuated Lorde’s fundamental weirdness. Why is Taylor being washed out here? I could be listening to anybody.
‘Maroon’? I’m not buying Taylor Swift dancing in New York City with no shoes, let alone with red wine spilled on her shirt. Taylor starts swearing in this song. Does Taylor drop the f bomb in regular conversation? I doubt it. Maybe she does but this song is not convincing me. ‘Anti-Hero’ is instantly forgettable. ‘Snow on the Beach.’ This is music produced to be played in a drug store while I try to find the Carmex.
Editors, I can’t take it.
Have you listened to Red? This woman is talented as hell. I would like to see Sleater-Kinney take her under their big wings. Imagine a riot grrlll Taylor Swift. She would be amazing. Please, set her free.
So Antonoff also produced this new The 1975 album that just came out. Will my editors indulge me in a double review? They have been accommodating, but this is a Manchester band. We will see.
This is some of the worst shit I’ve ever heard. Jamiroquai would beat these guys up and throw them in a dumpster. Look, if you like this sort of Footloose throwback, God bless you. Enjoy your life. This is the most bland, worthless music. But, the name? “The 1975”? Joe Strummer rolled over in his grave. Fuck off.
Antonoff needs to be stopped. Save Taylor.
Words by Rick Larson