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Taylor Swift to Release New Album ‘Folklore’ at Midnight

Taylor Swift One World: Together at
Global Citizen

UPDATED: Taylor Swift made a surprise announcement that she will be releasing her eighth studio album, “Folklore,” Thursday midnight.

In a social media posts, Swift explained that the album is the result of many of her plans for 2020  — including a short stadium tour supporting her 2019 album “Lover”  — were scrapped due to the pandemic. In lockdown, she wrote the new album’s songs in isolation, collaborating with Aaron Dessner of the National, Bon Iver, William Bowery and Jack Antonoff. The full track list appears below.

Swift is a longtime National fan who was seen mingling backstage at the band’s June 2019 concert at Prospect Park in Brooklyn, N.Y.

At some point on Thursday evening she will release a music video for the song “Cardigan,” which she directed, noting that the shoot was “overseen by a medical inspector, everyone wore masks, stayed away from each other, and I even did my own hair, make-up and styling.”

She described the album as “entire brand new album of songs I’ve poured all of my whims, dreams, fears and musings into… Before this year, I probably would’ve overthought when to release this music at the ‘perfect time,’ but the times we’re living in keep reminding me that nothing is guaranteed. My gut is telling me that if you make something you love, you should just put it out into the world. That’s the side of uncertainty I can get on board with.”

The album is also a change in direction in that Dessner co-wrote or produced 11 of the 16 songs — a key-collaborator role that Antonoff played on her last two albums and Max Martin or Nathan Chapman on preceding ones. She did not elaborate on Antonoff’s contributions but said he is “basically musical family at this point”; he mentioned two in a social media post. Bon Iver co-wrote several tracks and sang on the album, while Bowery — a new collaborator, which may be a pseudonym — co-wrote two songs.

Aaron Dessner wrote on social media that Swift approached him to co-write some songs in late April. “I thought it would take awhile for song ideas to come and I had no expectations as far as what we could accomplish remotely,” he admits. “But a few hours after sharing music, my phone lit up with a voice memo from Taylor of a fully written version of a song — the momentum never really stopped.” (Head here for more on Dessner and his comments on working with Swift.)

For his part, Antonoff tweeted later in the morning, “‘August’ & ‘My Tears’ are my favorite things we’ve done together. Cannot wait for everyone to hear this beautiful work.”

As for the album’s timing, Swift wrote, “Before this year I probably would have overthought when to release this music at the ‘perfect’ time, but the times we’re living in keep reminding me that nothing is guaranteed. My gut is telling me that if you make something you love, you should just put it out into the world. That’s the side of uncertainty I can get on board with.”

Tracklist

1.” The 1”
2. “Cardigan”
3. “The Last Great American Dynasty”
4. “Exile” (feat. Bon Iver)
5. “My Tears Ricochet”
6. “Mirrorball”
7. “Seven”
8. “August”
9. “This Is Me Trying”
10. “Illicit Affairs”
11. “Invisible String”
12. “Mad Woman”
13. “Epiphany”
14. “Betty”
15. “Peace”
16. “Hoax”
Bonus track:
“The Lakes”