Midnights (3am Edition) Reaction + Analysis #JohnMayerIsOverParty

Summary notes created by Deciphr AI



In a candid review, the speaker expresses mixed feelings about Taylor Swift's surprise release of seven new songs from "Midnights," which are not mere bonus tracks but akin to "From The Vault" additions. They highlight how Swift continues to innovate by merging the re-recording strategy with fresh music, as seen with "Evermore" being a sequel to "folklore." The speaker, who edits their own reaction videos, admits to initially disliking the tracks due to a negative mindset. They delve into the song "Would've, Could've, Should've," discussing its raw portrayal of Swift's past relationship with John Mayer and the lasting impact it had on her. The speaker and their co-host Madeline from "The Illusion Snake" podcast plan to dissect "Midnights" in depth, exploring how it fits into Swift's larger body of work. They critique individual songs, noting which ones add to the album's narrative and which fall short, and end with a call to their audience for further discussion on reordering the tracklist for a personalized listening experience.

Summary Notes

Taylor Swift's 3am Surprise

  • Taylor Swift released seven new songs from "Midnights" at 3am, which were not initially considered bonus tracks.
  • The new songs are described as "from The Vault" and are additional to the album, not revisions left off the first time.
  • Taylor has incorporated the re-recordings format into her new original music, similar to the release of "Evermore" following "Folklore".
  • The release of these songs had a minimal time delay, with only about three hours before they were available.

have you ever felt extremely grateful but also extremely venomous and angry at the same time because that's how I felt when I saw that Taylor's chaotic 3am surprise was going to be seven new songs from midnights

This quote expresses the speaker's mixed feelings of gratitude and anger upon discovering Taylor Swift's surprise release of seven new songs at 3am.

The Concept of Bonus Tracks

  • The speaker initially thought the song "It's Different" was a bonus track.
  • Bonus tracks are usually one or two additional songs, but Taylor Swift released seven, challenging the traditional concept.
  • The new songs are considered to be similar to "The Vault" tracks, which are special additions rather than mere bonus content.

now we can't even call them bonus tracks because a bonus track is like one or two different songs.

The speaker clarifies the difference between typical bonus tracks and the seven new songs released by Taylor Swift, suggesting they are more than just bonus content.

Taylor Swift's Creative Freedom

  • Taylor Swift has found ways to incorporate creative freedom with her re-recordings, packaging it successfully.
  • Her new original music continues the fluidity seen in previous albums, with "Evermore" being a direct continuation of "Folklore".
  • The speaker appreciates the minimal delay in releasing additional content from Swift.

it's really cool that she's kind of found ways to incorporate the re-recordings format and the fluidity and the creative freedom she's been able to harness and so successfully package with these re-recordings and bring it into the creation of her new original music

This quote highlights Taylor Swift's ability to blend the re-recording process with her new music, showcasing her creative freedom and successful packaging of content.

Reaction to the New Songs

  • The speaker attempted a reaction video but found it too negative due to their critical and analytical nature.
  • They tuned out after the fourth song but revisited the song "Coulda Woulda Shoulda" later.
  • The speaker shares their unfiltered, honest reactions, even if they are critical of Taylor Swift's work.

but I was just you doing that Meme where it's like me filling the room with negative energy because I don't want to be there that's what this video was like

This quote describes the speaker's negative energy while attempting to record a reaction video, comparing it to a meme about not wanting to be present.

John Mayer's Influence

  • The speaker and their co-host Madeline believe Taylor Swift's relationship with John Mayer was traumatizing.
  • The song "Dear John" and the new song "Coulda Woulda Shoulda" are cited as evidence of this.
  • The speaker feels that Swift's song "Tolerate It" from "Evermore" captures the feeling of worthlessness inspired by her relationship with Mayer.

John Mayer needs to go to jail that man he is wanted by Interpol for harassing a nation the Taylor Nation

The speaker humorously exaggerates the negative impact John Mayer has had on Taylor Swift's fanbase, suggesting he has metaphorically committed a crime against them.

Critical Perspective on Taylor Swift

  • The speaker expresses that they love "Midnights" after three listens and finds it a complex album.
  • They plan to discuss the album in-depth on their podcast with co-host Madeline, analyzing how it fits into Taylor Swift's larger body of work.
  • The speaker warns viewers who dislike critical perspectives to stop watching their video.

if you don't love hearing a critical perspective of Taylor Swift I really suggest that you just cut your losses and click off this video because a lot of the times I share my unfiltered honest reactions

This quote is a disclaimer from the speaker, advising viewers who are not open to critical opinions on Taylor Swift's music to discontinue watching the video.

Album Analysis and Podcast Discussion

  • The speaker and Madeline will cover "Midnights" on their podcast, looking at how the songs reveal parts of Taylor Swift that are rarely shown.
  • They intend to dissect the album thoroughly, discussing its complexity and how it fits into Swift's overall work.

if you want to hear a really like at length in-depth dissection of this I will be covering this on my podcast this weekend with my co-host Madeline

The speaker invites listeners to tune into their podcast for an in-depth analysis of "Midnights" alongside their co-host Madeline.

The Great War and Other Songs

  • The speaker begins their reaction with "The Great War" and notes that many of the new songs are lengthy.
  • They feel that some songs, like "Hits Different," should have been on the album instead of tracks like "Labyrinth."
  • The song "The Great War" is likened to "Evermore" rejects, while "Bigger Than the Whole Sky" has a childlike, naive vibe.

we're gonna start off with the Great War which is four minutes and a lot of these songs are really long too which is just. yeah. I mean it's good. it's a book. but it really does sound like Evermore rejects

This quote introduces the song "The Great War" and suggests that the new songs are reminiscent of content that didn't make it onto "Evermore."

Jack Antonoff's Influence

  • The speaker mentions Jack Antonoff's influence on Taylor Swift's music and hints at discussing it in the future.
  • They note that "Bigger Than the Whole Sky" is a Jack Antonoff song and express a liking for the title.

oh the next one is a Jack Antonoff song and boy do we have a lot of Jack Antonoff songs lately

The speaker points out Jack Antonoff's significant role in Taylor Swift's recent music, suggesting his influence is extensive.

Reaction to Unnamed Song

  • Taylor Swift expresses a profound sense of loss in the lyrics.
  • The song evokes a feeling of nostalgia and longing, reminiscent of past relationships.
  • There's a comparison to the production style of "Red Taylor's Version" and a bluesy quality likened to "Dear John."
  • The song captures dual perspectives on a past relationship, both the negative and the pining.
  • It's noted that songs about the same person can coexist on the same album with different emotional tones.

"I have a lot to live without I have a lot to Pine about I mean that's like a Taylor's classic life anytime a relationship ends or something goes wrong."

This quote reflects on the recurring theme of loss and longing in Taylor Swift's music, particularly after a relationship ends.

"There's a very profound sense of loss here... there is a kind of like warbling bluesy human quality to it that does remind me of Dear John a little bit."

The speaker connects the emotional depth of the song to another of Swift's works, "Dear John," noting a bluesy, human quality in the music.

Interpretation of the "Whole Sky" and "Great War"

  • The "whole sky" metaphor suggests a vast emptiness after a significant person's departure.
  • The "Great War" could symbolize the internal conflict or the aftermath of a turbulent relationship.
  • The song is seen as an addition to Taylor Swift's narrative of past relationships, offering a new perspective.

"And I don't know how to fill it nothing else will walk through that passage."

This quote metaphorically describes the irreplaceable nature of a person who has left a void in the speaker's life.

"So the Great War not necessary bigger than the whole Sky adds something."

The speaker suggests that the song adds a new dimension to the emotional landscape of Swift's work, comparing personal conflict to a "Great War" and the emptiness to the "whole sky."

Critique of "Paris"

  • The song "Paris" is critiqued for not living up to the romantic expectations associated with the city's name.
  • The lyrics are described as embarrassing, and the songwriting is criticized.
  • The speaker highlights the importance of editing in songwriting, suggesting that Taylor Swift benefits from collaboration and editorial input.

"This is where I ended my podcast co-host Madeline made a good point about this on our shared Instagram that we use for the podcast."

The speaker references a critique made by co-host Madeline about the use of the word "Paris" in the song, setting high expectations due to the city's romantic connotations.

"This is where we need an editor sometimes."

The speaker emphasizes the need for editorial oversight in songwriting, suggesting that Swift's work could be improved with more structured guidance.

Reflection on Collaboration and Editing in Songwriting

  • Collaboration is deemed crucial for Taylor Swift's songwriting process.
  • The speaker values the role of editors like Liz Rose in refining Swift's work.
  • The comparison between the 10-minute and final versions of "All Too Well" illustrates the benefit of a concise and clear songwriting approach.

"Sometimes having limitations on your creativity actually makes you be more creative."

The quote underlines the idea that constraints can enhance creativity, as they force artists to work within certain boundaries.

"Taylor does all the writing I just help her get the clearest sharpest images and compile them together."

This quote, attributed to Liz Rose, showcases the importance of an editor's role in the songwriting process, helping to clarify and focus the artist's ideas.

Analysis of "High Infidelity"

  • "High Infidelity" is speculated to be about Taylor Swift's relationship with Calvin Harris.
  • The song is seen as an admission of cheating and offers a contradictory stance to Swift's previous moral position against infidelity.
  • The production of the song is described as a mix of electronic and folk elements, which the speaker does not favor.

"She's basically admitting to cheating on someone and also admitting that she like started her lover of love in order to get out of it."

The quote suggests that "High Infidelity" is a confession of infidelity and a strategic move to end a relationship.

"The April 29th thing is very interesting that was mere days before the Met Gala."

The speaker points out the significance of the date mentioned in the song, connecting it to the timeline of Swift's personal life events, including the Met Gala and the start of a new relationship.

Taylor Swift's Artistic Direction and Evolution

  • Taylor Swift's experimentation with different genres, such as Indie electric pop, has received mixed reactions.
  • The melody of certain tracks is perceived as monotonous and lacking in quality, leading to their status as bonus tracks.
  • Taylor Swift's music from the year 2016 is characterized by a distinct sonic identity, reflective of her personal experiences and stylistic choices during that period.
  • The song "Glitch" is noted for its "swaggy beat" and is reminiscent of Taylor Swift's previous work on the album "Reputation."
  • Taylor Swift's evolution as an artist is marked by changes in her musical style and delivery, including a move towards a more whispered and direct vocal approach.

"The melody for this is very monotonal and very boring. so it adds context to the record but does it add quality to the record no which is why it's a bonus track so it's all good up next is glitch." "Glitch to me either sounds like in the getaway car moment where she was getting away from someone she didn't like or it was like her reflecting on that summer of chaos you know this this summer is the apocalypse 2016.. her reflecting on that when she first met Joe but either way this is this is very like it really sounds like 2016 Taylor like if I had to put a Sonic identity to the visual of bleach Ella that kind of like all over the place hedonistic uh stylistically incoherent very iconic moment in time I would I would attach the song to it to be honest this."

The first quote expresses a critique of a song's melody as lacking in excitement, indicating it contributes to the album's context but not its quality. The second quote provides an analysis of the song "Glitch," relating it to Taylor Swift's personal life and artistic phase in 2016, suggesting it captures the essence of that time.

Taylor Swift's Relationship with Producers and Creative Process

  • Taylor Swift's collaboration with certain producers is highlighted for creating a comfortable and trusting creative environment.
  • The importance of feeling safe and not scared to share ideas is emphasized as a critical aspect of the songwriting process.
  • The relationship between an artist and their producer can significantly impact the quality and emotional depth of the music they create.

"I think she feels very safe with him she said that in the folklore Long Pond Studio sessions right that she feels very like protected and swaddled in like a comforting environment when she's working with him that's a great level of trust to develop with someone that is a creative collaborator because you've got to trust them and feel safe you're handing over like your deepest darkest Secrets your thoughts it's also very vulnerable to create um you you have to be in a place of not feeling scared to share your ideas."

This quote reflects on Taylor Swift's sense of security when working with a particular producer, emphasizing the importance of trust and safety in the creative process. It highlights the vulnerability involved in songwriting and the need for a supportive collaborative environment.

Taylor Swift's Personal Struggles and Artistic Credibility

  • Taylor Swift's past relationships, particularly with John Mayer, have left a profound impact on her emotionally and artistically.
  • The song "Would Have Could Have Should Have" is described as disturbing and harrowing, indicating a deep emotional response from the artist.
  • Taylor Swift's journey in the music industry involved overcoming perceptions of being a "teeny bopper" and striving for recognition as a serious songwriter.
  • The dynamic between Taylor Swift and John Mayer during their relationship is linked to the disparity in artistic credibility and respect at the time.
  • Taylor Swift's need for validation and respect is traced back to her childhood and her early career, reflecting a constant struggle for acceptance and acknowledgment of her talent.

"Taylor was in a very vulnerable position when she met him just artistically because she was kind of stuck in this teeny bopper category. and she really wanted to be taken seriously as a songwriter and John Mayer had this level of credibility and artistic respect that Taylor just didn't have at the time things have changed obviously but that was the dynamic they were working with when they dated." "This to me is really kind of like but the reason why the John Mayer stuff hits so hard and always like feels so raw and vulnerable that you want to look away and you don't you don't engage with it from a t perspective is because she's not really taking shots at him it's just clear that she's like profoundly damaged by this feeling of being unimportant and being tossed aside and not having credibility and not being taken seriously that has messed with her and given her a complex that we can literally chart and see throughout her career."

The first quote discusses Taylor Swift's vulnerability and desire for artistic credibility during the early stages of her career, particularly in the context of her relationship with John Mayer. The second quote delves deeper into the emotional impact of her past experiences, suggesting that her music reflects not only personal pain but also a long-standing battle for respect and validation as an artist.

Taylor Swift's Quest for Artistic Validation

  • Taylor Swift's need for recognition and respect in the music industry is a recurring theme in her career.
  • The pursuit of artistic validation is seen as a struggle, particularly for female artists, to be taken seriously within a landscape that can be dismissive of commercial success.
  • Taylor Swift's relationships with respected male artists are highlighted as part of her quest for validation and acceptance within the realm of high culture and serious artistry.
  • The unique talent and legacy of Taylor Swift are recognized, yet her commercial appeal sometimes overshadows her artistic merit in the eyes of critics.

"A claim is something she really had to Claw from the general public it came pretty quickly with some industry professionals but I have a feeling that like she sometimes still doesn't feel that she's given credit where credit is due and that is true a lot of people just write Taylor Swift off as a you know author of catchy songs like that's all she does it's not that great. but it's like if it's not that great. and it's so easy to do then why aren't there more Taylor Swift's like why aren't there other people doing what she does and building the Legacy that she's built she is special."

This quote addresses the challenge Taylor Swift faces in gaining widespread acclaim and respect for her work, despite her significant achievements and influence in the music industry. It suggests that her struggle for recognition is ongoing and highlights the disparity between her commercial success and the critical validation she seeks.

Taylor Swift's Artistry and Public Perception

  • Taylor Swift's transition from a teenage artist to being taken seriously as an adult artist was a challenge, with her album 'Folklore' marking a significant point in this journey.
  • Respect for her work grew with the album '1989', but it was still often dismissed as teenage pop music.
  • The perception of her music as merely for teenagers is viewed as a misrepresentation of her artistry.

"Taylor had to go basically like what I mean until folklore to really get taken seriously as an adult artist is kind of crazy."

This quote emphasizes the struggle Taylor Swift faced in being recognized as a mature artist rather than one catering only to teenagers.

The John Mayer Controversy

  • John Mayer's relationship with Taylor Swift and the subsequent fallout is seen as particularly damaging, with Taylor having to rebuild herself artistically and personally.
  • Mayer's public handling of the breakup is criticized, especially when compared to other exes of Swift who chose to remain silent or handle the situation gracefully.
  • Mayer's response to Swift's songwriting about their relationship is seen as aggressive and unjustified.

"John Mayer wound cuts so deep because he saw an opening, a way to like blow her down to ground zero and left her there to pick up the pieces herself."

This quote suggests that John Mayer took advantage of a vulnerable moment in Taylor Swift's life to undermine her, causing significant emotional damage.

Taylor Swift's Songwriting as Personal Expression

  • Taylor Swift's use of her personal experiences in her songwriting is defended as a legitimate artistic expression.
  • The expectation that dating Taylor Swift could result in becoming subject matter for her songs is acknowledged.
  • John Mayer's own songwriting about Swift is criticized for being demeaning, while Swift's work is seen as an artistic response to emotional wounds.

"All she did, she didn't speak on it, she didn't speak about him, she wrote this song and it's an incredible song."

This quote asserts that Taylor Swift chose to express her feelings through her music rather than engaging in public discourse, highlighting the song's quality as a work of art.

Analysis of "Dear Reader" and Taylor Swift's Narrative Style

  • "Dear Reader" is compared to Lorde's "Secrets From a Girl (Who's Seen It All)" and is appreciated for its advisory and reflective tone.
  • The song plays with the concept of Taylor Swift as an unreliable narrator, a critique she often faces.
  • The song's advice is acknowledged as sound even though it comes from a place of desolation, emphasizing Swift's self-awareness in her narrative voice.

"This is like playing with the idea of Taylor being an unreliable narrator which is something that she gets critiqued for all the time."

This quote highlights the meta-narrative aspect of "Dear Reader," where Taylor Swift acknowledges and incorporates criticisms of her storytelling into her music.

Personal Reflections and Song Rankings

  • The speaker expresses a change of heart regarding the quality of Taylor Swift's music, identifying several songs as particularly good.
  • Songs from the album 'Midnights' are ranked based on personal preference, with some being favored and others seen as less necessary.
  • The speaker reflects on the overall satisfaction with the album and the gratitude for the music.

"I'm pleased with that. I'm happy with that though I could have lived without a couple of these songs but whatever I'm grateful for the food that I received."

This quote conveys a balanced critique of the album 'Midnights,' appreciating the high points while acknowledging that not all songs were as well-received.

Community Engagement and Final Thoughts

  • The speaker invites the audience to share their opinions and create their ideal tracklist for 'Midnights.'
  • A sense of community is fostered among fans, encouraging discussion and engagement.
  • The speaker concludes the reaction segment, indicating a need for a break from the intensity of the reviews.

"Let me know in the comments what you thought about all these songs which one is your favorite if you have to redo the track list what songs would you put on from the midnight 3am version if any and what would you take off of the standard edition and switch to bonus tracks."

This quote is a call to action for fans to engage with the content, share their views, and participate in a collective creative exercise regarding Taylor Swift's music.

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