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Barely released, Taylor Swift’s new album is already a box-office hit

Barely released, Taylor Swift’s new album is already a box-office hit

Taylor Swift sets new listening records for her eleventh album. This poetic release is sure to cement the international aura of the pop star who seems to stop at nothing.


If Taylor Swift is known for playing to sold-out stadiums, she’s also known for pampering her fans like no other artist, and her fans, particularly committed if not enamored, know how to return the favor. These famous “Swifties” are no strangers to the new audience record that Taylor Swift generated in the space of 24 hours for her new album.

Released on April 19, “The Tortured Poets Department” is a tribute to Peter Weir’s film The Dead Poets Society.


A stunning entry into a new era


Fans will be able to add a “new era” to Taylor Swift. These “eras” correspond to the elements linked to the release of a new album, i.e. her clothing and hair style, her favorite themes, the highs and lows of her existence and the programming of dedicated concerts.


In her 17-year career, the pop star has traded in her country roots – which she has managed to modernize – her acoustic guitar and curly hair to become a fearless pop star with impeccable bangs and a sequined jumpsuit. Her greatest physical metamorphoses came with the release of 1989 (2014) and, above all, Reputation (2017), following the controversy generated by the most talked-about couple of the time: Kanye West and Kim Kardashian.


To the ten pre-existing eras featured on her last world tour, The Eras Tour, immortalized by a film broadcast in cinemas and on Disney+, is added an eleventh era. For this new opus, Taylor Swift has unveiled her first video clip, Fortnight, a duet with rapper Post Malone.


The news is made all the more sensational by the fact that the artist has set a new listening record on streaming platforms. On Saturday April 20, the day of its release, The tortured Poets Department album earned the artist the title of most listened-to artist in the history of the Spotify platform…in the space of 24 hours! Her rival, Apple Music, retaliated by awarding her the title of most listened to pop album on its first day.


A tribute to the Cercle des Poètes Disparus


All’s fair in love and poetry” soberly wrote Taylor Swift to introduce her new album on her Instagram account.


While “Midnights”, released on October 21, 2022, depicted the artist’s taste for nightlife in two singles – Lavender Haze and Anti-hero – the new opus bears witness to her longstanding, but here formalized, attraction to poetry. While taking on an electro-pop sound, the writing on this new album follows on from his 2020 folk turn with the twin surprise albums Folklore and Evermore, released during the confinement.


Entitled The tortured Poets Department, the album is directly inspired by the film The dead Poets Society. A good way for the singer to reaffirm her status as a songwriter and, above all, a modern-day poetess.


Indeed, since 2005, she has been renowned for her songwriting talents. A veritable subject of academic analysis, notably at the prestigious American universities of Harvard and Stanford, the lyrics of her songs, always directly inspired by her personal life, are particularly scrutinized.


It has to be said that all of her 243 songs (according to Rolling Stones magazine’s count to date) were either written by her or co-written. Taylor Swift is renowned for borrowing from classical poetry, the subtle use of metaphors and similes. One of the tracks on The Albatross, for example, makes direct reference to Samuel Taylor Coleridge’s Lament of the Old Sailor, or Charles Baudelaire’s Albatross.


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Settling scores with Kim Kardashian


As well as the content of her songs, the hidden meanings of her titles are a subject of particular comment on social networks. While the pop star generally prefers not to give any explanation, so as to let her fans make the song their own, she made an exception to the rule with the track thanK you aIMee.


Fans saw it as a thinly veiled allusion to her former dispute with Kim Kardashian. The entrepreneur-influencer star is known for having been the companion of rapper Kanye West (7 years of marriage before a divorce in January 2021). West has been Taylor Swift’s sworn enemy ever since he interrupted her on stage when she had just won the Best Video for a Female Artist award at the 2009 MTV Video Music Awards, for her track “You belong with me”. She beat out Beyoncé with her track “Single Ladies (Put a Ring On It). Choking on Taylor Swift’s victory, he declared on stage that Beyoncé had shot “the greatest music video of all time” anyway, repeating the phrase twice. The singer then appeared shocked and mortified.


In 2016, in his “Famous” video showing him in bed with Kim Kardashian, the rapper openly attacked Taylor Swift in his lyrics, declaring “I feel like me and Taylor might still have sex. Why? I made that bitch famous (Goddamn)”. I feel like me and Taylor might still have sex. Why? Why? I made that bitch famous (Goddamn)”. While the Swifties cried scandal and the artist denied having given her consent, Kim Kardashian counter-attacked to defend her husband of the time with an audio recording leaving no doubt as to her approval of the lyrics. Some fans turned their backs on her, seeing her as a manipulative hypocrite. Faced with the flood of haters, the pop star withdrew from the scene for a while and deleted all her content on her Instagram account.


At the end of 2023, speaking to Time Magazine, which had just named her Personality of the Year, Taylor Swift declared that Kim Kardashian was responsible for her “professional death”. A professional death that the singer had used for her personal storytelling. In her video What look you made me do, she literally came back from the dead, giving rise to a much darker Taylor Swift, complete with scarlet lipstick and stylistic references to snakes…


In short, this revenge song hidden in the long version of the album is enough to fuel controversy and boost record sales.



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