Taylor Swift — “Long Live” (from Speak Now) — Long Live - Speak Now

Flog me if you must for going with La Swift two days running, but the out-of-the-gate smash success of Speak Now is a story of seismic proportions, and one that I officially deem worthy of spending a little more time exploring. Besides, as promised yesterday, I delivered unto mine ears the second half of this album, and was pleasantly relieved to discover that, although Speak turns infinitely more dramatic and dour past its midway point, it also — perhaps coincidentally, perhaps not — gets one hell of a lot more memorable (read: better), with three tracks leaving spectacular impressions: “Innocent” (Swift’s surprisingly impactful — and surprisingly charitable — olive branch to Kanye West for his childish antics), “Last Kiss” (the most deeply affecting of Speak‘s several bliss-gone-bust epics), and the record’s triumphant closing track, a thrilling, transcendent paean to breaking through, to succeeding on your own terms, and to the friends that you might just make history standing alongside.

1 response to “had the time of my life fighting dragons
(or: november 3’s honey from the hive)”

  1. the buzz from Blake Boldt:

    Fearless was overrated in my opinion, but Speak Now is one gem of a pop-country album and seems to be drawing the commercial success it deserves. The two duff tracks for me were “Innocent” (sorry) and “Never Grow Up.” I agree, too, that the more dramatic and daring she is, the better the music.

    Note how she goes to more musical extremes this time as well. Straight-up folk-country ballads, emo-pop rockers, punk-lite teen angst anthems, and the bluesy, mimicking-John-Mayer centerpiece. Some smart phrasing and a good dose of irony—intended or not—in her storytelling really make this a worthy contender for pop album of the year. And I’m done.