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The Student News Site of University of Science and Arts of Oklahoma

The Trend

The Student News Site of University of Science and Arts of Oklahoma

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Taylor Swift’s “The Tortured Poets Department” (Album Review)

Elyanne prepares to listen to Taylor Swift’s newest ablum on her record player.

Amidst her world tour, Taylor Swift released her 11th studio album “The Tortured Poets Department” April 19. Swift announced she would release this album while receiving an award at the Grammy’s earlier this year. The original album included 16 songs, written by Swift and co-written by Jack Antonoff and Aaron Dessner. Two other artists were featured in this album with Post Malone on “Fortnight” and Florence + The Machine on “Florida!!!” 

After the initial release at midnight, there was a countdown on Swift’s Instagram page that was set to be over at 2 a.m. (ET). When the clock was up, Swift surprised fans with a double album titled “The Tortured Poets Department: The Anthology.” This second album included another 15 songs, adding up to 31 songs in total for this release.   

As an avid Taylor Swift lover myself, this release was highly anticipated. I was fortunate enough to be able to stay up until the album was released. A few of my favorites from the initial album were “But Daddy I Love Him,” “Who’s Afraid of Little Old Me?,” and “I Can Do It With a Broken Heart.” These songs are catchy while also having deeper meanings to them. The song “Florida!!!” also hit close to home for me, as one of my best friends and I are planning a trip there for next winter. The song could not have come at a better time for me.   

“I Can Do It With a Broken Heart” is my overall personal favorite in this new album. While I attended The Eras Tour in April 2023, Swift was going through a breakup from her six-year relationship. No one knew about it at the time, but we could tell that something was up. “I Can Do It With a Broken Heart” showcases her feelings during that time of The Eras Tour.   

In a lyric from the chorus, she states:   

“Babe, you gotta fake it till you make it, and I did”   

“All the pieces of me shattered as the crowd was chanting “More!” 

These lyrics really show how she was feeling, and it makes sense now, knowing what she was going through. While this song sounds more upbeat, it is one of the sadder songs of the album when you dive into the meaning of her lyrics.   

When the double album was released, I was shocked and so excited. A few of my favorites from The Anthology were “The Black Dog,” “The Albatross,” and “The Prophecy.” My favorite from the double album was “The Prophecy”. Swift talks about changing the prophecy and how that affects life as we advance. Sometimes in my life, I would like to change what is happening, but I cannot.    

Swift has also made changes to her world tour to accommodate this new album. Swift made many changes to The Eras Tour to be able to fit in seven of the new songs. Fans were so excited to see changes made in the tour, and many of them expressed that they are looking forward to their show date even more now. Swift made changes to the setlist and altered her wardrobe. Nearly every era featured a new set of outfits, which made it feel even more different.   

Overall, this is one of the best albums that Swift has produced. She dove into what was happening in her life while creating lyrics that appealed to many people through the emotions in her songs. While lyrics are hard to interpret sometimes, Swift did an excellent job explaining them to her listeners.  

I look forward to seeing what Swift can accomplish with the rest of her career. Releasing a double album in the middle of a huge world tour is no small feat, and she was able to pull it off. 


Elyanne Kenney is a third-year psychology major at the University of Science and Arts of Oklahoma.

Ray Thomas-Lapham
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About the Contributor
Elyanne Kenney
Elyanne Kenney, Contributing Writer
Elyanne is a third-year psychology major from Moore. She has a dog named Luna, and she really enjoys Taylor Swift and reading books. Elyanne can normally be found sitting in her apartment listening to music and hanging out with Luna.   Experience with The Trend: Contributing Writer: Aug. 2023 - present