Queer Query: Taylor Swift’s Got Style - A Music Review

Taylor Swift (David Shankbone, Wikimedia commons)

For the latter half of 2014, the music world belonged to Taylor Swift. Her two big songs, off her “1989” album, dominated the top of the charts from September all the way to the last few weeks of December. Despite her conquering of Billboard, however, both songs exhibited two opposite, but near crippling problems.

Her first number 1 single that year, “Shake It Off,” had an excellent beat and tune, but was a lyrical mess. The song’s content was juvenile, and the rap segment was bewildering to listen to. Her second song, “Blank Space,” proved to be a considerably better song word wise, but had a strange, dark tone and poor production work that made it grating to listen to multiple times.

Now, Swift has released a third single off the “1989” album, called “Style.” Despite not being quite the chart smashers of previous outings(As of this writing, it is number 7 on the Billboard Hot 100), “Style” has eliminated the issues plaguing “Shake it Off” and “Blank Space.” It should be considered not only the best song off the “1989” album, but one of the best modern Taylor Swift songs to date.                 

While not as bright as “Shake it Off,” the tone and production work of “Style” is appropriately whimsical and dream like. Also wonderfully done is Taylor’s singing, though this is to be expected. Her voice is not forceful, but still strong in tone, and is often quiet in sections of the chorus, enhancing the beat.

More importantly, Taylor Swift’s lyrics, often her strongest quality, are completely on point. One of the reasons she excels at this is her use of description; boys named Drew, the roles and lives of her and her rival, etcetera. As noted earlier, one of the weaker aspects of “Shake It Off” was its lyrics, which dropped many of Swift’s best qualities in favor of lines such as “Hella good hair” and “My ex-man.” “Style,” by contrast, makes excellent use of description to paint a vivid picture of what Taylor considers to be a perfect relationship.

It is not one that exists, but one that would be ideal for her, a moment captured in time of blissful, idealistic love. It gives the image of two young lovers, kissing on a hill in the summer for eternity. This is helped especially by the chorus, which gives a James Dean-esque look for the hypothetical lover, and leaves her own clothing up to the listener’s imagination. Swift’s lyrics, as usual, paint a vivid picture of a relationship, one blissful moment in time to be remembered forever.

Overall, this is one of Swift’s best recent songs, and easily the best song off of the “1989” album. I would highly recommend giving it a few listens, because Taylor Swift is never going out of Style.

B. Gelwasser is a wrestling enthusiast, book lover, and recent Boca High graduate. B. also enjoys referencing “The Dresden Files,” reading comics, and sharing memes on all social media.  

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