Taylor Swift’s Folklore Album Review

By Brian Kim, Staff Writer

Almost an entire year after the release of Tayler Swift’s album Lover, the artist’s latest album, Folklore, was unexpectedly dropped on July 24th. The lack of media coverage for the album is arguably the reason for Swift breaking the Guinness World Record for most streams on Spotify of a female artist on Folklore’s day of release. I decided to give the album a listen to see what all the hype was about. Here are some of my thoughts and my favorite tracks from the release.


  1. Cardigan

“Cardigan” is one of the first songs that helps the listener understand the transition between her familiar, upbeat pop songs and a more toned vibe with meaningful lyrics. The slow-paced and calm energy that Taylor emits through her breathy vocals personally makes me believe that it is one of the best songs in the album.

  1. Exile

“Exile” is one of Folklore’s songs that produces a similar feeling to “Cardigan.” Featuring Bon Iver, the track mixes his powerful voice with Taylor’s graceful vocals and creates a fantastic piece. “Exile” is about a romance from two different points of viewBon Iver and Taylor Swift each vocalizing one of them. The dramatic piano tunes in the background mixed in with a dynamic duo of voices may be the reason for my devoted liking to “Exile.”

  1. Seven

Taylor Swift’s catchy rhymes and melody make “Seven” one of Folklore’s more enjoyable songs. Her whispering and toned lyrics glide across the chorus and the beautiful violin in the background. Due to my soft spot for pieces that include violin instrumentals, “Seven” gets a solid 9/10 score from me.

  1. August

In “August,” Taylor Swift sings about a failed summer relationship. The song also includes other themes, such as drinking wine to recover from a broken heart and forbidden love. “August”  has a catchy rhythm, similar to “Seven.” The themes and messages promoted in “August” make it one of my favorites from Folklore.

  1. Illicit Affairs

With the song “Illicit Affairs,” Taylor Swift goes deep into the devastating effects of toxic relationships, including lying and trust issues. “Illicit affairs” also consists of the positive outcomes Taylor Swift earns from being in these relationships, contrasting the negative tone of a bad relationship. 

Not only was Taylor Swift’s Folklore an incredible album overall, but interestingly, she uses different perspectives to tell a single story throughout the album. For example, “August,” “Cardigan,” and “Betty” are connected with the same love triangle and are all sung from different perspectives. Additionally, Taylor aims at a different audience in this album, an audience that is more grown, mature, and able to grasp the meaning of the lyrics and story behind her songsunusual from the radio-friendly and happy songs she typically includes in her album releases.