Why I Believe Taylor Swift’s ‘Red (Taylor’s Version)’ is Her Best Record 

Kirsty Francis reveals her reasons as to why she believes the album made Taylor Swift the pop sensation she is today…

To many people, Autumn is the time to blast Red (Taylor’s Version) by Taylor Swift, but for me – it’s all year round. I wholeheartedly believe that Red is Taylor’s best album. The bridges, the gossip, the storytelling, THE LYRICISM.  

(Photo from Rolling Stone)

I must confess that my opinion may be a little biased due to the deep connection I have with this record. Talking to Rolling Stone in 2020, Swift said that “[Red] was really sort of the beginning of everything that I’m doing now.”, proving that this album made Taylor the pop icon she is today. 

 Taylor Swift has always been an accomplished lyricist. At 19, she singlehandedly wrote the entire Speak Now album. A few years later, Taylor was craving a new genre. She recruited Max Martin, a Swedish producer who knew a thing or two about how to make pop hits having worked with Britney Spears on …Baby One More Time and helping to devise Katy Perry’s I Kissed a Girl. And with that Red was produced. 

This album produced two of Taylor Swift’s biggest hits: We Are Never Getting Back Together, and I Knew You Were Trouble. The first single discusses the relatability of being done with your ex for good, while I Knew You Were Trouble is about getting into a relationship that you knew was doomed from the start. 

(Photo from The Ringer)

However, The Last Time, Begin Again and I Almost Do form the perfect timeline of a breakup. They are the songs that impacted me the most and tell a powerful story. In The Last Time, Taylor gives her boyfriend one final chance before she leaves, which she clearly does as in I Almost Do, she explains that she misses her ex and that she wants him back. Begin Again tells the final chapter of her love story in that Taylor is ready to be in love again. but with someone new.  

A staple in the Red album and a song that I absolutely must mention is All Too Well – a song about an ending relationship. Taylor Swift put her heart and soul into that song, and it will be remembered for many years to come. 

With these relatable stories and tropes, I don’t see how any other album could be considered a better breakup album. 

However, Red isn’t primarily just a sad record for the broken-hearted. Taylor also ensures that upbeat bangers 22, Starlight and the Lucky One are included so there is a track for everyone.  

(Photo from The New York Times)

The bonus tracks in this album are The Moment I Knew, Come Back…Be Here, and Girl at Home. I like to call these three songs ‘The Holy Trinity’. Girl At Home is the classic girly pop song. Followed by The Moment I Knew, which feels like a sister to All Too Well. Last but not least we have Come Back…Be Here. I personally find this song utterly heartbreaking. I think it can be interpreted in different relationship situations; long distance, the start of a relationship, or the yearning for a person. 

Taylor’s version of Red was highly anticipated by fans as they eagerly awaited ‘the vault’ songs – tracks that were left out of the first album – of Swift’s romance with Jake Gyllenhaal. Swifties all around the world united when listening to this album, and on its release day, it gathered over 90 million streams. The nine songs that Taylor included from the vault, such as Better Man, I Bet You Think About Me, and Message in a Bottle, makes this album 10x better than her others. 

I thoroughly believe Taylor Swift’s Red is her best album, due to the range of genres she covered. The country hits, pop hits, and the folk songs I don’t believe any other album has had that much depth. There is also the variety of stories throughout the album– break ups, growing older, and girl power. All-important topics that everyone can relate to in one way or another. 

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