Midnights Review


Riley Londraville

Taylor Swift does it again! Swift’s new album, Midnights, dropped at midnight on October 21st this past week. The consensus is that it’s a hit album with many new fan favorites. That being said, I have yet to listen to it. I waited until right now. It’s currently November 5th as I’m writing this, and I have finally found the time to listen to each song and give both my honest opinion and a completely unrealistic scenario under which you should listen to each song. Let’s begin!

Lavender Haze

The loud base mixed with the background vocals and the electronic feel is giving a rebellious vibe. I can vividly imagine this song being overheard as you’re running down the busy sidewalk on a bridge. It’s midnight (obviously) and you’re out past curfew with a new friend, maybe a bad influence. You have ten missed calls wondering where you are and you couldn’t care less. You only hear a few seconds of the song as it blasts from a taxi car passing by and you feel alive for the first time in a while. 


This song is probably the most meaningful on the album, between the vocals and the music behind the words it feels like a song from her album Reputation. As the dust settles after the fight-induced breakup, you look to your partner—now ex—whose head is buried in their hands. The silence is ever so loud as you reminisce over the bright moments you shared, the ones where you lost track of time with each other. Then you remember the dark moments, the ones where words were said, or the right ones weren’t. This song plays quietly on your drive home as you accept the complexities that were intertwined with all of the good in your relationship.


This song is so honest, I love it. Swift herself said this is her favorite song on the entire album and after one listen I can certainly see why. Listen to this song as you walk alone down a crowded street, with wired headphones carrying the music to your ears. You look to each person you pass and find something you want and they have. One has dimples, the next a new haircut, one a high-end jacket. With each person that passes, you find a new reason to despise your appearance and what you have. Wallowing in self-pity, you fail to realize each person that passes is thinking the same thoughts about you. 

Snow On The Beach (feat. Lana Del Rey)

Despite the hate this song is getting since you really can’t hear Lana at all, this song is my favorite on the album after the first listen. This song faintly plays over your local coffee-houses sound system. You sit at a table for two with the one you love, ordering the same drink you always have. Your coffee orders stand as the only constant in your relationship, as each day brings a new miracle to share. You stare into each other’s eyes and as you sip your drink you feel as though it’s the first day you met. While you’re in the same coffee house, you couldn’t be more different than the people that met that day.

You’re on your own, kid

Wow. That’s my first impression of this song. It’s definitely going to be on repeat for the next few days. If you were to isolate just the music and take away the vocals, it’d be very simple. That being said this song is incredibly deep and the lyrics craft this depth. Listen to this song when you’re alone. You’re biking on a boardwalk, the sun warming your shoulders, and the salty breeze cooling you down. Your thighs begin to burn as you pedal hard, but no one else can do it for you, you’re on your own. This used to frighten you, but now you’re motivated by independence. You live for yourself.

Midnight Rain

While I’m not the biggest fan of the sound of Taylor’s pitched-down vocals sprinkled throughout this song, it redeems itself in every other way. Self-identity and realization are very prominent themes in this song. Coincidentally it just so happens that this song plays as you comb your hair in the mirror, your routine syncs with your playlist each morning. You find a different face in the reflection each morning, each one closer and closer to your true self until you finally let go of the person you think you need to be and focus on who you are. Finally, you stare into the eyes of yourself, the version you want to be, creating your own name.


Another simple-sounding song with lyrics that create such explosive meaning. Swift is a lyrical genius. This song plays softly from the car stereo as you drive home from a party. You’ve just witnessed your ex with another: they look happy together. Throughout your ranging emotions, you surprise yourself as you find that you’re not jealous, but rather curious. You calmly tap along to the song as you come up with questions you know will never be answered. Is their attempt at love similar to, or even better than, the love you shared long ago, or does it come second best to the meteor strike that once was?

Vigilante Shit

I feel that since there’s a swear in the title of this song, it’s only fitting that I describe it with one: badass. That’s all I’m gonna say about it, and when you listen to it you’ll understand exactly what I’m talking about. On stage in front of a packed stadium, you stand, belting about revenge. Perfectly enough, the certain someone you’re singing about is in the front row, and you stare dead into their eyes as you let it be known how you feel. As the song comes to an end you drop the mic on the floor, and the noise of the plastic against the hardwood snaps you back into reality. As you pick up the hairbrush, that doubles as your microphone, you long for the sense of closure this song momentarily provides when you prance around your kitchen table.


The bridge of this song is beyond incredible, to say the least. I’m in love with the sound of sparkling bedazzled throughout the song and the harmonies add another level of shimmer. This song is blasting over a speaker at a party. You can practically feel the glare of someone following your every move with jealousy, but you couldn’t be more unbothered. You’re done putting the person behind those envious eyes before yourself. That one glare doesn’t come close to the affectionate attention and compliments you receive that night from others. In all honesty, you don’t care whose eyes are on you, you’re just happy to be undeniably you. In response to the myriad stares, you dance like nobody’s watching.


While many would listen to this song and think of a person, I am reminded of a place. Perhaps it’s because my mind is consumed with after-high school thoughts, but this song should be listened to while sitting beneath a tree at your college campus. As you breathe in, breathe through, breathe deep, and breathe out you find a sense of comfort in this unfamiliar place. You miss your first love, the place you once called home, but you begin to fall for this new chapter of your life.


The title of this track leads you to believe it’s going to be a dark song, but it’s far from it. This song could have easily been on her album Lover and no one would’ve batted an eye. Listen to this song at full blast when that special someone finally gets what they deserve. Whether it’s a cheater or a bully, or anything in between. It’s not that you’ve been praying for their downfall, but you can’t help but laugh as they finally get what was coming to them. All you had to do was sit back and watch. Karma’s a bitch, but not for you.

Sweet Nothing

The simplicity of the lyrics with the slowness of the music behind them creates such a delicate feel throughout this track. It’s beautiful. This song plays on vinyl as you sit on your bedroom floor and try to unwind after a long day. You pull out a box underneath your bed full of mementos you’ve collected over the years. It always felt childish to save those somewhat meaningless items, but as an adult, you couldn’t be more appreciative that you did. You pull out each item one by one. A Christmas tree ornament from your family, a green hair ribbon from your childhood best friend, a small pebble from the beach you went to with your first love. To others these items mean nothing, but to you they mean everything. You find comfort in each of these items, but more in the people attached to them.


Swift is truly a mastermind with all the plot twists in each of her songs. This song has a very electro-pop sound that creates an innocent feel, especially with the game-like melody this song opens with. However, Swift loves a deeper meaning so when you reach the chorus, everything changes. That being said, I’m not going to tell you how she shifts the vibe of this song; I guess you’ll need to listen for yourself. You hum this song to yourself as you write in your journal about your methodical scheme to fall in love. As if your journal is a love spell, you have no doubts about your plan and smile in the breaks of each verse. You’ve crafted these words like clockwork.


All in all, this was a difficult album to create scenarios for because each track tells its own story, and I didn’t want to ruin the meaning of the work by creating an alternate one. In the end, music is meant to be felt and interpreted. This is an amazing album and while it has big themes of love and revenge, I’m almost certain you can find a meaning to relate to in any of these songs. Go take a listen and question these meanings for yourself.