Single Review: Taylor Swift, "We Are Never Ever Getting Back Together"

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August 14, 2012

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://www.countryuniverse.net/wp-content/uploads/2012/08/Taylor-Swift-We-are-Never-Ever-Getting-Back-Together-150×150.jpg” alt=”” width=”150″ height=”150″ />Building a Taylor Swift single around the vocal is like building a hamburger around the bun.

On some of her most successful recent singles, Swift had mastered the art of not getting in the way of the song. Alternating between sparse productions like on “Ours” and creative ones like “Mean”, Swift’s songwriting was showcased in the best possible light, and her limitations as a vocalist didn’t work against her.

“We Are Never Ever Getting Back Together” is a huge step backward. It makes two critical errors. The first and most fatal is it’s far too dependent on coos and ooh-ooh-oohs, and Swift is simply terrible at singing them. Not satisfactory, not mediocre. Flat out terrible. Then there is the further error of alternating the singing with her talking like a snarky teenager, which is irritating in its juvenility.

It doesn’t help that she’s not working with a strong composition to begin with, but if she’d downplayed the sarcastic delivery and grating vocal runs, this would be a decent record. As is, it’s only listenable for its sheer audacity, a novelty that wears off quickly after a handful of listens.

Written by Taylor Swift, Max Martin & Johan Shellback

Grade:

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D

Listen: We Are Never Ever Getting Back Together (Country Mix)

Pop Mix:

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  1. GillesNo Gravatar says:

    It’s somewhat catchy, but this song sounds like she’s just having fun with her band and not interested in artistic achievement

  2. Ben FosterNo Gravatar says:

    I don’t like the spoken word parts either. It almost sounds like Swift is self-parodying her own persona. The title alone sounds like something out of a Country California Fake News article.

    I do find it catchy, though, which might be good for a few plays, but we’ll see.

  3. bigzNo Gravatar says:

    immature juvenile crap. alas! her growth on Safe and Sound seemed like ages ago… and she has regressed to being a 14-year old.

    and there seems to be conversation in there somewhere… or was she trying her hand at rap??! shades of her collabo with B.O.B.

    i hope the whole concept of her album is not sung in such a disdainful, snarky way.

    this song leaves a lot to be desired. wholeheartedly agree with the reviewer.

  4. Dan MillikenNo Gravatar says:

    For once, we have a Taylor Swift song where the “pop” mix sounds like the true one and the “country” mix sounds tossed together, which makes sense with Max Martin having produced the track. (Pop mix here: http://blog.martianleaks.com/2012/08/first-listen-taylor-swift-premieres-new.html)

    The criticisms apply either way, though. The oohs and coos don’t bother me, but the bratty “talking” parts do (aside from that first great “what?” – they could’ve stopped there). Especially the bit about the indie record being “much cooler than mine.” Can Taylor Swift please stop writing songs that mention the fact that Taylor Swift writes songs? (“Our Song,” “Hey Stephen,” “Mean,” “Better Than Revenge”.) It was cute the first time or two; now it feels weirdly self-impressed.

  5. EthanNo Gravatar says:

    I’m the biggest Taylor fan I know, and I can’t deny how much I dig this song (and am encouraged BECAUSE of how much of a brave departure I think it is in some ways from her previous work,) but even I (who also own a healthy amount of Dolly, Cash, and the Dixie Chicks) must admit, I believe this is the first song for which there is no justification in shipping it to country radio. That doesn’t determine its quality, but I applaud you for reviewing it at all, honestly, Kevin. Strangely, while in terms of emotional maturity, this is a notch below “Picture to Burn,” I do think it represents a ballsy movement forward for her in the sense that she sounds really comfortable (which makes sense, considering some of the kind of pop tunes she’s publicly professed infatuation with.) I just can’t decide whether that comfortability is inherently a good or bad thing at the moment.

  6. Sam GNo Gravatar says:

    While I think it’s a step backwards from her best material on her last album, I don’t think it’s a bad album track… I don’t know about a single, though. I certainly hope there is better stuff on the album than this?

    The worst part of the song? The next three months of media speculation about which famous ex-boyfriend is the subject of this song.

  7. GloriaNo Gravatar says:

    Just cannot believe country radio will actually play this crap! Can’t believe either, that some people like it and think it’s catchy! I heard the first minute of it and couldn’t listen anymore. Awful song!

  8. LynnNo Gravatar says:

    I wonder who did the production for this single. Was it still Nathan Chapman?

    The melody is very, very catchy. And given the way it shot up all the way to #1 at iTunes, this will for sure be another smash for her. I find the lyrics too immature though. The lyrics and the way she sang this reminded me very much of Picture to Burn.

    I’ll wait for the album before I decide whether or not Taylor has progressed/matured artistically. Could be that they just decided to go for the safe route for the lead single (safe in the sense that the song is familiar, similar to past Taylor hits).

  9. Ben FosterNo Gravatar says:

    Could be that they just decided to go for the safe route for the lead single (safe in the sense that the song is familiar, similar to past Taylor hits).

    I’d say that’s possible. It almost seems like they did the same thing when they kicked off the Speak Now album cycle with “Mine.”

  10. JohnNo Gravatar says:

    If you’ve ever wondered what it would sound like if Avril Lavigne tried for a country crossover, you now know. Bleh. Someone’s hedging their bets on world domination.

    I’ll make the prediction that there will be some “Ours” and “Safe and Sound”-type songs on Red. Question is, does she have Country cred at this point, and does it even matter?

  11. HeatherNo Gravatar says:

    I actually thought Taylor would have shown maturity in this album but if the lead single is like the rest of the album—then it is the same old same old with bad vocals and her pretending to be a 12 year old juvenile girl. I was a fan with Teardrops on my guitar and a few other decent songs (even with the bad vocal delivery) but now I am moving on to someone who can actually sing and hit the right notes—and one who has decent songs. I am very tired of the boy bashing and her rantings on every song. This song is terrible and if country radio embraces it–then I can only assume that it is about money and ratings because it certainly can not be anything else.

  12. JohnNo Gravatar says:

    Here’s my dilemma in bashing this song (even though I’m not a fan). We rail against the redneck truck/chick/beer songs, and then we rail against the fluffy content songs. While it doesn’t work for me (and clearly doesn’t for a lot of folks here), the format needs to be something to everyone to stay alive. Could Taylor do that with something a little more empowering? Yeah…she actually already has. But the teenage girls are going to eat this up. Is that good for the format? I don’t know, but if those girls grow up and out of Taylor’s music, or even grow into Taylor’s more mature-sounding music, that may not be a bad thing.

  13. HeatherNo Gravatar says:

    I am a teenager and in my 2nd year at college. I have GROWN UP but am still maturing. This song and some of Taylor’s other songs are annoying. All she ever writes about is boys and how she is wronged. My gosh–is that how bad her life has been in the relationship department and if so why doesn’t she show a little maturity and class and not rant and rave like a 12 year old who didn’t get her way? My friends and I laughed at the critics saying that her song Mean was about bullying when it is so obvious that she was dissing and ranting and calling the critic names because he actually had the nerve to tell the truth about her song and vocals (which he later retracted and I totally lost all respect for him). I have grown out of those boy bashing songs she sings and will move on to someone who has songs with substance and can actually sing. My friends and the girls at school feel the same way.

  14. MikeNo Gravatar says:

    Well that song is PURE POP!!! and its her worst song so far! is annoying!

  15. PatrickNo Gravatar says:

    Ahh, well,,it’s,,,God,,,
    IT’s a departure yes, but a really bad one in my opinon. The one thing she had to rely on was this “singer/songwriter” image that allowed her to pop back and forth between country and pop. With this, she is clearly in K.perry territory and there is nothing about it that has that kind of bite and honesty.
    This sounds completely fake and intended to feed to children(not even teens), so as to continue the cash flow. If Taylor Swift was ever a legitimate artist, “She Has Sold Out”.
    She is a 23 year old woman! What is the matter with her?

  16. PeterNo Gravatar says:

    I hope that Country Radio makes a strong statement by NOT giving this awful song spins.

    Anyone know if this upcoming album, Red, will be categorized as a Pop album or a Country album?

  17. JoeNo Gravatar says:

    Amazing song. Well-written, lighthearted and catchy.

    If country radio refuses to give this spins they need to ban Carrie too. lets face it…her 2 singles from “Blown Away” have been pure pop as well.

  18. GloriaNo Gravatar says:

    This song is just plain stupid…pop, country, rock,opera, rap,etc…..whatever genre you call it, the song still sucks. Her voice is so grating and annoying. It makes no sense. I agree with Heather. My granddaughter is 12 and she doesn’t care for TS music at all. I will defend Carrie here. BA is beautifully sang. I cannot say the same for Taylors. I cannot believe her fanbase really likes this ridiculous song, but they will make another fortune for Taylor and they for sure will pester radio to get it played. I don’t care what age her fanbase is….they are ruining country music along with Taylor.

  19. Cha ChoNo Gravatar says:

    finally! bitch is back in country music!

  20. J.R. JourneyNo Gravatar says:

    I agree with Kevin on this track. The echo in the vocals and all the background noise makes it sound like a cheap bootleg recording instead of a radio-ready single.

    What I don’t understand is anyone thinking this could pass as a country song, no matter how wide a tent you’re throwing over it. I also thought at this point in her career, Swift would be releasing dual singles for pop and country airplay, sort of a throwback to the A-side/B-side singles of yesterday. Swift certainly has the audience and muscle behind her, and probably the backlog of songs, to pull it off successfully.

  21. The_Trouble_With_The_TruthNo Gravatar says:

    After listening to this song, I decided good country music was done with for sure. We need a country Music Jesus to save us all.

  22. SweetcheeksNo Gravatar says:

    I think Taylor can do better than this, but I also think this is a lot better than most of the country music on the radio right now, regardless of whether this is really country or not. I hope it gets a good amount of airplay but I also hope Taylor releases stronger singles in the future.

  23. EthanNo Gravatar says:

    “But if those girls grow up and out of Taylor’s music, or even grow into Taylor’s more mature-sounding music, that may not be a bad thing.”-John.

    I’m inclined to agree with you, but if, as Kevin said, this is indeed a step backwards for her artistry as far as emotional maturity goes, when WILL they grow into that ‘more mature’ music from Taylor? She’s 22. If we haven’t heard it yet, what does it sound like? And if we have, then this really is a step backward and that doesn’t bode well for her future work.

    Also, I agree that it rings a tad hypocritical to rally against the redneck AND the fluff material, but that assertion implies that something in the middle, some nuance, is too much to ask for. There should be something for everyone in country, but I shudder to think that everyone is either in the “redneck” or “fluff” crowd.

  24. ReaganNo Gravatar says:

    And the line between country and pop is completely blurred. Nevertheless, in my opinion, this is actually decent pop, but yes, it is pop. I mean, like, Katy Perry-pop, not Shania Twain-pop. If I hear this on country music radio (which I will), it’ll sound EXTREMELY out of place. Catchy as heck, though.

  25. ReaganNo Gravatar says:

    Also, prediction time:

    Red will TOTALLY win “country” album of the year at the Grammys. And I will laugh hysterically.

  26. Dan MillikenNo Gravatar says:

    ^ Own the Night won the country album Grammy this past year. As far as I’m concerned, that award lived a beautiful life and then died tragically at the end of the 00′s. Now there’s a Zombie Grammy walking around in its place.

    Anyway, I’m not ready to assume this is what the rest of Red will sound like. This is a very, very Max Martin-y track, both in terms of the lyrics and the sound. I’m not surprised that they went with it as the lead single, because Max Martin songs tend to become big hits (“…Baby One More Time”, “Since U Been Gone”, “I Kissed a Girl”, “Hot N Cold”). But it sounds like he’s just one of many people Swift collaborated with on the album. This track could end up being an outlier.

  27. JohnNo Gravatar says:

    Dan, spot on. Ethan, I think that leaves a LOT of space in between. I’m heartened at the moment that, for the first time in a while, I am enjoying some of the most-played tracks on country radio. Gloriana, Carrie Underwood, Lee Brice, Jana Kramer, Josh Turner and Little Big Town have all gotten wedged in my head at some point. Hopefully this means that Redneck songs are more of an outlier that will come and go in popularity without ever holding the middle.

  28. EthanNo Gravatar says:

    John, I too hope that substance survives (and I love Little Big Town). I think the problem with either redneck or WANEGBT, its apparent polar opposite, is that when it hijacks the mainstream it has a similar effect to when radical, Tea-Party-ing republicans hijack the mainstream political right wing. It makes it harder for sanity to be heard. But no matter what happens to radio, at least we’ll have our own record collections.

  29. Ben FosterNo Gravatar says:

    I’ll render judgment on the new Swift album when I hear it. Right now that’s all I can say. It could have other songs that are better than this, but for now we’ll just have to wait and see.

  30. KennyNo Gravatar says:

    You give Carrie Underwood so much grievances about not being country enough in your last review but the main problem you have with this is her vocal performance?

  31. VickiNo Gravatar says:

    I admit I was shocked. This is not Taylor moving forward with more creative stories, catchy songs, this is Taylor moving back before her first album. I admit, I thought it a song that someone would write for Carrie Underwood. But without Carrie’s voice to make it work, it falls flat. Her last album, she wrote totally herself. This album she had co writers and took a chance. If this is what is to come on this album, then Taylor, honey, you do better on your own. I loved “Safe and Sound” and “Ours”. I hope there is more of the real Taylor on the next single.

  32. LynnNo Gravatar says:

    I remember that Max Martin also co-wrote (and also produced, I think) Carrie Underwood’s Quitter, a Play On album track, and I went eeewwww the first time I heard it. And now I had the same reaction to this song. My conclusion: do not let Max Martin near any form or shape of country music lol.

  33. MarkNo Gravatar says:

    This is just as bad as “Truck Yeah” by Tim McGraw. Both on the Big Machine Label and both are complete sell outs right now.

  34. Paul W DennisNo Gravatar says:

    She’s not much of a singer, but usually they can camouflage her vocal deficiencies, and produce a presentable product.

    This song highlights her vocal flaws – F+

  35. JohnNo Gravatar says:

    Say what you want about Carrie’s music being pop, but she doesn’t put out pop versions of her songs like Taylor has. If pop radio wants what country radio is playing, then they have to play the same song. I respect that.

  36. DiamondNo Gravatar says:

    The Wolf station in my town played it once an hour today. This will probably be a #1 country hit. But boy, this song is so bad. It makes no statement that hasn’t been made over and over by Swift in the past few years. I really think this is a pretty cynical release by her.

  37. NateNo Gravatar says:

    Carrie’s last singles may have been “pop” but that doesn’t mean she’s not a country artist. She plays the Grand Ole Opry every chance she can and there are many actual country songs on her album. The problem is that Carrie gets criticized for putting out pop-country songs, meanwhile people like Taylor Swift or Lady Antebellum get praised for the same stylings. But John nails it when he says that Carrie doesn’t remix her songs. That’s a huge deal. Taylor sells herself out to pop radio, and it’s sad that her latest single is advertised as pop with a country remix. That’s not country, honey!

  38. Ben FosterNo Gravatar says:

    Kenny, this review and the most recent Underwood review were written by different reviewers.

    That said, I prefer to evaluate Swift’s and Underwood’s respective output on its own merits without feeling the need to immediately compare one with the other. I find the mentality of “There can be only one” to be quite irritating.

    I’m not a fan of pop remixing myself, but I don’t consider that in itself to be a knock against the artist. Yes, Taylor Swift has allowed it. But so have Shania Twain and Faith Hill, among others. Even more decidedly country acts like Lee Ann Womack (“I Hope You Dance”), Jo Dee Messina (“Bring On the Rain”), and the Dixie Chicks (“Landslide”) have allowed their songs to be remixed for pop radio. That doesn’t make it bad music, nor does it undermine the artist’s place in the country genre. It’s just a way for the music to have wider appeal.

  39. LynnNo Gravatar says:

    “That said, I prefer to evaluate Swift’s and Underwood’s respective output on its own merits without feeling the need to immediately compare one with the other. I find the mentality of “There can be only one” to be quite irritating.”

    Exactly. Thank you, Ben. I think we can have a meaningful discussion on the merits of a song without comparing the artist with another. I’m a Carrie and Miranda fan, but I find the endless comparison among the top 3 female country artists to be tiring.

  40. JohnNo Gravatar says:

    Great points, Ben. I should clarify…I don’t mind remixes either. But Nate hit the nail on the head saying that this song is a pop song remixed for country, not the other way around. I would say the last unabashed pop song Carrie recorded was “Some Hearts,” and that flopped. Everything since then has at least been rooted in some form in country, and I think that resonates with her fans. Taylor’s fame is at a different level, though, and she may not be as damaged by this song as we seem to think. The Billboard write-up on the song’s success at radio today practically had it nominated for a Grammy.

  41. SeptNo Gravatar says:

    Countryuniverse always has straight-forward and honest reviews

    This song is trash. I don’t really understand if people approve for it to be played on country radio

  42. HeatherNo Gravatar says:

    Ben—-I know that Carrie does not remix her songs to pop and I also know that other country artists have remixed their songs to pop—BUT—I have NEVER heard of a COUNTRY ARTIST (as Taylor and others insists she is) remixing their songs to COUNTRY. That is so absurd that it is actually laughable. I am just a teenage college student but it is so evident that Taylor has used country as a stepping stone to the pop world and she is very manipulative. Isn’t there ANYTHING happy and positive in her world that she can write about instead of dissing her ex boyfriends all the time? The young people I know just do not do that and as a matter of fact some of the exes are now our friends. She has a MAJOR problem with rejection and needs to take a long, hard look at herself.

  43. TomNo Gravatar says:

    …some songs should never see the light of single. they’re just so destined for a slightly anonymus spot between 4 and 8 on an album. 7 would have been a good one for this tune, probably.

    since taylor swift’s latest releases were rather dealing with themes of the “twenty plus” age group of her audience, this one clearly aims at the high school teenagers again, which is a market segement for her that mustn’t be overlooked. marketing strategy beats artistic value. won’t be the last time.

    two times meat and only one bread in the middle – if it wasn’t a little messy to eat, it would have the potential to be the biggest idea the company with the golden arches might ever not have had.

  44. ScottNo Gravatar says:

    Not her best or her worst. C+

  45. RobertNo Gravatar says:

    I thought this was Avril Lavigne when I heard it on the radio this morning. Avril Lavigne at her worst…

    It is kind of cool that she collab’ed with Max Martin though!

  46. PSU MikeNo Gravatar says:

    I’ve liked a lot of Taylor Swift’s most recent output, and I’m certainly not ready to release the hounds on her yet. However, I honestly couldn’t get through the first minute of this when hearing it on the radio the other day. I did finally man up and listen to this, but my initial opinion wasn’t swayed…this is almost a trainwreck of “Truck Yeah” proportions (I say almost because I think at least Taylor was trying to do something original with the gimmicks here…they just failed her miserably). Taylor Swift is much, much better than her current single. The only unfortunate thing about that statement is that it seems like I could say that about a lot of artists and their current singles at radio…and it’s getting a tad repetitive/discouraging.

  47. klarkNo Gravatar says:

    With some modifications in the melody, I believe this could have been a decent song. Well, we instead got this one.

    Let us hope it is an outlier in her new album.

    PS: I am a fan. Ugh.

  48. JohnNo Gravatar says:

    Heather, just look at Kelly Clarkson’s “Mr Know It All” for a pop song remixed (and then re-recorded) for country.

  49. HeatherNo Gravatar says:

    John, Kelly’s country mix does not sound any more country than her pop version. However, she is a pop artist remixing out of her genre to country. On the other hand Taylor is a country artist (supposedly) and remixing a pop song to her own professed genre. I find this absurd. Since she is a country artist why didn’t she do a country version first and then remix it to the pop genre as she does all of her other songs? My friends and I find her actions very pop oriented and we are very angry with her The song is not well written and is not vocally good at all. Kids our age (which Taylor is older than us) do not talk the way the lyrics are written. They are in the vocabulary of 12 and 13 year old kids and that is who she is targeting. We are COUNTRY MUSIC FANS and we feel used by her and her need to sell more records even if it means writing and singing pop songs or remixing her songs to pop. We are so angry that we have been giving away the enormous amount of things we bought at her concerts and on line. Se are SOOOO over her.

  50. Ben FosterNo Gravatar says:

    How do we know that the pop mix was produced “first”? And why does it make a such a huge difference? I think most of us agree that it’s a poor song either way.

  51. SweetcheeksNo Gravatar says:

    I fail to see what is “absurd” about Swift (allegedly) doing the pop mix before the country mix, (Ben’s point above is sound). The song may or may not be good, but “absurd” doesn’t seem like the right word.

    I’m also a country fan but I sure don’t feel “used by her and her need to sell more records” by also “writing and singing pop songs.”

    I don’t think Swift (or any singer) owes fans of a particular genre some sort of promise never to make music in another genre. Should Hootie and the Blowfish fans feel “used” because Rucker has tried a country career? Should fans of Rucker’s country stuff feel “used” if Hootie gets back together? Why? On what basis could a singer promise to fans who buy an album or attend a concert that the singer will never move into another genre?

    I know many fans develop emotional connections with certain stars, but often the connection is with the public persona of the star rather than the person behind that persona. I can understand why a fan who thought that “My favorite singer truly, genuinely, honestly, is country (or whatever) through and through” might feel betrayed a bit when it turns out that might not be totally accurate. But I don’t think singers “use” their fans in any significant way when they change musical direction.

  52. JayNo Gravatar says:

    Ben, Carrie Underwood has stated that she won’t allow remixes of her songs because she believes it compromises the integrity of the song, she said it dumbs them down –

    Taylor Swifts new single is the same as Kelly Clarksons country solo single was for me- not even listenable, both songs have an annoying disjointed sound of pop and country – I give it a Grade D also

  53. SweetcheeksNo Gravatar says:

    Re: Carrie’s comment that remixing “compromises the integrity of the song,” and “dumbs it down”

    How does a remix “dumb down a song”? What does this even mean? Do all remixes “dumb down” a song or only some?

    And how does a remix compromise the “integrity” of the song? What does it mean for a song to have “integrity”?

  54. JohnNo Gravatar says:

    I think we can all agree this is weak. Which means that it will be lodged in our heads for the next two months. I’m going to need a whole lot of Bill Monroe to cancel this out.

  55. RowdyRedNo Gravatar says:

    Perhaps Carrie meant that one or the other audience is being humored or patronized, because the entire purpose of the remix is sales.

    The (ahem) artist may think that adding a whisper of fiddle, or banjo, or steel guitars is sufficient to countrify a song, or the absence of them is enough to popify the same song, but if the message isn’t authentic to that genre, then it’s just a snowjob. Corporate gGreed at work, not much else.

    At least, that what I think it means.

  56. RowdyRedNo Gravatar says:

    Perhaps Carrie meant that one or the other audience is being humored or patronized, because the entire purpose of the remix is sales.

    The (ahem) artist may think that adding a whisper of fiddle, or banjo, or steel guitars is sufficient to countrify a song, or the absence of them is enough to popify the same song, but if the message isn’t authentic to that genre, then it’s just a snowjob. Corporate greed at work, not much else.

    At least, that what I think it means.

  57. SDNo Gravatar says:

    As a musician, I find that creating new arrangements with new instrumentation is actually just a fun and creative process. I can easily imagine that Taylor, as a musician, may also just really enjoy that process: of breathing a different kind of life into a song via its musical arrangements. The original composition of a song doesn’t mean that it’s the most ‘authentic’ just because it came first. Alternative arrangements that come later can also be just as authentic and provide an entirely different meaning to the song.

    That being said, the lyrics to this song feel incredibly juvenile, and I’ve been questioning the people who say that it’s all very ‘clever,’ or something. Taylor is actually quite wonderful at subtlety in her songwriting and this is a pretty huge departure on that front.

    I’ll still sing along when this comes on the radio, though. (I will freely admit that there are days when I just want to go NEENER-NEENER at my ex-boyfriends, and this hits the spot quite nicely).

  58. NellieNo Gravatar says:

    I think the idea that remixes dumb down the song came from the fact that pop stations demand that any banjo, steel guitar, and fiddle in a song be removed if they’re going to play it. If you and your producer have put a lot of thought into the version of the song that ends up on the album then why should you have to change the originals just because pop stations are scared of certain instruments?

    @SD
    I agree that creating new arrangements can be a fun & creative process, that process goes on before the final arrangement that makes the album is selected. The problem with these remixes is they’re not really fresh recordings, they’re just new mixes that sub out acoustic and electric guitars for banjo and steel, and synth for fiddle. Not much life being breathed into the song that way, you’re just subbing out instruments pop DJs don’t like for ones they will and it doesn’t necessarily improve the song or make it sound fresh.

    @Ben Foster, @Sweetcheeks
    I have no idea which mix came 1st but the pop version is the one on Itunes, you can’t buy the “country” one anywhere.

    I feel like there’d be a lot less angst about Taylor if everybody just accepted she’s a pop singer who occasionally releases songs that fit country radio so she can maintain her spot at the 1st radio format to play her. I know the industry’s awarded her as a country act and all that but as time goes by, I think fewer and fewer people believe she actually represents country music.

    The surprise factor here shouldn’t be that Taylor’s released a pop song or that she’s focused on pop airplay. The surprise factor is really that she regressed back to Picture To Burn days.

    The angst probably feeds into the bigger plan with Taylor anyway. Who here doesn’t think the next single will be a lot more mature, and more country radio-friendly? Taylor and her people are very well aware that her sales depend on reaching the country fanbase too and they’re too smart not to give country radio an easier song to sell to their listeners. Country radio’ll probably be so relieved that Taylor isn’t totally leaving them behind that they’ll be all over the next single.

    My opinion on this song: I don’t appreciate Taylor reminding me how unpleasant her voice is, I don’t appreciate Taylor reminding me why I’ve suspected she’s a brat, and this is the 1st time in a while I’ve thought Taylor got lazy as a writer.

  59. JayNo Gravatar says:

    Sweetcheeks – if a song to a singer is a work of art that you labored over and found the perfect, melody and, sound and production etc, why would an artist want to change it ? For more fans , more money, more fame? art doesn’t work like that – you can’t just change out instruments or production at whim and expect the song to be as good as the original and Carrie seems very particular about the songs her vocals are on and says she wants her songs to remain intact . If POP radio wants to play her song the way it is as they did with Before He Cheats that had no remixing she said she’s fine with that, just doesn’t want the song compromised.

  60. Erik NorthNo Gravatar says:

    Having listened to this song several times now here at Country Universe, I really have to wonder whether or not Taylor is actually going to start acting her age and not her shoe size.

    Whether she has mixed the song country or pop isn’t the issue with me. What is the issue, however, is that her voice isn’t any less irritating than it was three years ago, and that her song subject matter seems to be either stuck in neutral, or in reverse. She’s going to turn 23 before this year is over, but I wouldn’t know it from this song. She is fast running out of time (IMHO).

  61. BrettAshleyNo Gravatar says:

    In regards to the remixing discussion – I think it’s going too far to say a song in one genre is “art” and the same song remixed to another genre isn’t. Whether *specific* songs are “art” or not is a different story, but I don’t think remixing necessarily ruins the artistic integrity of a song.

  62. VickiNo Gravatar says:

    I think Carrie just meant when she sings a song. It’s done. I think it all stems from “Before He Cheats” when pop stations wanted to play it but wanted it changed to take out the banjo, steel elements. But she stood her ground and said no. Eventually pop radio played it anyway, and it was her biggest hit ever. By “dumb down”, that means you take pride in your song choice and it’s arrangement and to change out instruments to suit another genre, means that you don’t have the faith in that song to begin with. But that’s her choice and her decision. It’s not saying that other country artists should do the same.

  63. Tara SeetharamNo Gravatar says:

    Whether she has mixed the song country or pop isn’t the issue with me. What is the issue, however, is that her voice isn’t any less irritating than it was three years ago, and that her song subject matter seems to be either stuck in neutral, or in reverse. She’s going to turn 23 before this year is over, but I wouldn’t know it from this song. She is fast running out of time (IMHO).

    This is pretty much how I feel. This song feels like a regression, and that’s disheartening.

  64. MaryNo Gravatar says:

    I just heard this song (pretty much against my will because I try to avoid Taylor Swift songs like the plague). I realize I’m biased against her to begin with, but Sweet Jesus, this song is awful. If this is indicative of her growth as an artist, then she has taken a huge (and I mean gargantuan) step backward. This is so bad I almost feel kinda jerk-y for hating it so much – but not quite. Giving this a D is an insult to all the other songs that got D’s.

  65. MarkNo Gravatar says:

    All these pressed souls. Taylor continues to slay

  66. LynnNo Gravatar says:

    ^^Classic post of a stan. LOL

  67. GalPalNo Gravatar says:

    Joe-”If country radio refuses to give this spins they need to ban Carrie too. lets face it…her 2 singles from “Blown Away” have been pure pop as well.” Carrie can sing and Taylor cannot. Even at 22 her voice has not matured-very child like. She is 22 and to be singing that praddle is just like a 12 year old throwing a fit. Why must Taylor fans always bring up Carrie if there is a bad comment said about her. There is no comparison-one can sing and it’s not Taylor. I listened to the song and it is horrendous-definitely not country worthy and pop all the way.
    Kevin-great review-two thumbs up-I couldn’t agree with you more.

  68. TeresaNo Gravatar says:

    I’d have to agree with you this one. My biggest problem with this song is that is pure pop and has been at the top of the country charts since its release! Really hoping it won’t win a CMA, but won’t be suprised when it does. It seems so unfair to me that this would win over true country artists such as Eric Church, Blake Shelton, or the like.

  69. klarkNo Gravatar says:

    “Joe-”If country radio refuses to give this spins they need to ban Carrie too. lets face it…her 2 singles from “Blown Away” have been pure pop as well.” Carrie can sing and Taylor cannot. Even at 22 her voice has not matured-very child like. She is 22 and to be singing that praddle is just like a 12 year old throwing a fit. Why must Taylor fans always bring up Carrie if there is a bad comment said about her. There is no comparison-one can sing and it’s not Taylor. I listened to the song and it is horrendous-definitely not country worthy and pop all the way.
    Kevin-great review-two thumbs up-I couldn’t agree with you more.

    Oh my God. Please stop pulling Carrie in a review of a Taylor song. The song is awful. Period. Comparing the two is unnecessary.

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