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    The Best And Worst Songs On Taylor Swift's "Folklore"

    If "my tears ricochet" is not in your top five, you're wrong.

    Taylor Swift's eighth studio album Folklore came out a few weeks ago, and I've been listening to it ever since.

    It's one of Taylor's best albums; every song is amazing. But...which ones are the best? Below, I rank all 17 songs from Folklore!

    NBC

    Disclaimer: I am not a music critic, and everything below is just my opinion. Feel free to disagree!

    17. "Peace"

    BEST LYRIC:
All these people think love's for show
But I would die for you in secret
    @taylorswift / Instagram, Republic Records

    "Peace" feels like an ending song to the album, and I wish it came after "hoax," which has more meat to it. The lyrics are strong, but it just doesn't feel like a full song. It feels like it never builds to anything, sort of like "It's Nice To Have a Friend" — but for some reason, it worked better in that song.

    16. "Seven"

    BEST LYRIC:
And I've been meaning to tell you
I think your house is haunted
Your dad is always mad and that must be why
    @taylorswift / Instagram, Republic Records

    I love the song, but I don't think it entirely fits Taylor's voice, and the tempo feels a bit too fast. I would love to hear someone like Billie Eilish cover this song. The second verse is definitely the strongest part!

    15. "August"

    BEST LYRIC:
Second, third, and hundredth chances
Balancin' on breaking branches
Those eyes add insult to injury
    @taylorswift / Instagram, Republic Records

    What I like about this song is it feels very much like old Taylor, sung by new Taylor. If Taylor was belting it out, the tempo was a bit faster, and there was some twangy guitar, this could 100% be on one of her first two albums. But it loses points because...I kind of want to hear that version instead.

    14. "Exile"

    BEST LYRIC:
Second, third, and hundredth chances
Balancin' on breaking branches
Those eyes add insult to injury
    @taylorswift / Instagram, Republic Records

    I feel like people may have me for this one, but as much as I love Bon Iver, this song just doesn't really do it for me. Besides the chorus, it sounds sort of like "Danny's Song," and I find myself wishing I were listening to that song instead. The song doesn't really get good until the bridge/when they start singing together, which is almost three minutes into the song.

    13. "Cardigan"

    BEST LYRIC: You drew stars around my scars but now I'm bleeding
    @taylorswift / Instagram, Republic Records

    Lyrically, I feel like this is actually one of the weaker songs on the album, especially considering this is really the best Taylor has been lyrically. However, musically, this song is very strong and super representative of the whole album. Taylor's breathy voice dances flawlessly over the melodic piano, and the music video is gorgeous.

    12. "The 1"

    BEST LYRIC: 
You know the greatest loves of all time are over now
    @taylorswift / Instagram, Republic Records

    Taylor always chooses the first song for the album perfectly. She gently leads you into the tone of the new album while providing a transition from the album before. Also, points for being explicit; Taylor really went there in the first line of her new album.

    11. "The Lakes"

    BEST LYRIC: 
 Take me to the Lakes where all the poets went to die
I don't belong and,  my beloved,  neither do you
    @taylorswift / Instagram, Republic Records

    Taylor REALLY took out the thesaurus on this one. At times it can get a little too much, but she manages to pull it off due to the beautiful melody. The bridge in particular shines, and the visuals of the song are very strong and representative of the album.

    10. "The Last Great American Dynasty"

    BEST LYRIC:
She had a marvelous time ruining everything
    @taylorswift / Instagram, Republic Records

    I love this one because it reminds me of Red, and feels like a similar story to "The Lucky One" and "Starlight." I love when Taylor tells stories from another time, and this is a great addition to that part of her catalogue, especially because it has a personal connection with her house. However, there are stronger songs on the album!

    9. "Invisible String"

    BEST LYRIC: Something wrapped all of my past mistakes in barbed wire
Chains around my demons
Wool to brave the seasons
One single thread of gold
Tied me to you
    @taylorswift / Instagram, Republic Records

    The intro to the song is definitely my favorite on the album. Taylor's always had a focus on colors and nostalgia, and this song blends both. The whole song is very sweet and pleasant, and I love how personal and specific the lyrics are, but again, there are better songs on the album.

    8. "Mirrorball"

    BEST LYRIC: You are not like the regulars
The masquerade revelers
Drunk as they watch my shattered edges glisten
    @taylorswift / Instagram, Republic Records

    I LOVE the visuals of this song. Like "cardigan," Taylor again makes a metaphor with an unremarkable object, but it works much better here. She adds so many layers to the metaphor, and while the song on the surface feels like a drunken, lovesick dance, it actually paints a picture of a lover desperately trying to hold onto a relationship.

    7. "This Is Me Trying"

    
BEST LYRIC: They told me all of my cages were mental
So I got wasted like all my potential
And my words shoot to kill when I'm mad
I have a lot of regrets about that
    @taylorswift / Instagram, Republic Records

    Musically, this is not the strongest song on the album, but lyrically, this song is just so poignant and personal that it earns possibly a higher spot on this list than it deserves. This is one of the songs I cried the first time I listened to it. Some of Taylor's strongest songs are about regret and personal responsibility, and this is one of the best examples of that.

    6. "Mad Woman"

    @taylorswift / Instagram, Republic Records

    The melody matches the lyrics: no one likes a mad woman. A woman's emotions are only really accepted if they're pretty or pleasing, and Taylor expertly used a beautiful piano melody that has an underlying sense of urgency and a breathy voice filled with muted anger to even further emphasize her lyrics. It perfectly captures the sort of internalized anger women feel, and gives such a sense of validation.

    5. "Illicit Affairs"

    BEST LYRIC:  Take the words for what they are
A dwindling, mercurial high
A drug that only worked
The first few hundred times
    @taylorswift / Instagram, Republic Records

    I don't love the lyrics, but the melody is the strongest on the album, so it has to be in the top 5. I feel like this is the most Taylor belts on the album, even though she's obviously not — it just feels like she isn't holding back, and there's so much emotion behind it.

    4. "Hoax"

    BEST LYRIC: You knew it still hurts underneath my scars
From when they pulled me apart
But what you did was just as dark
    @taylorswift / Instagram, Republic Records

    This is another song with a super strong intro. There's no waiting; the song is good right away. Lyrically, this is one of the best (if not the best) songs on the album. It's a testament to this album that this song is not #1; it's so hauntingly beautiful.

    3. "Betty"

    BEST LYRIC:  I'm only 17, I don't know anything
    @taylorswift / Instagram, Republic Records

    Every Taylor Swift album has to have at least one fun song, and honestly, this is the only really fun one to me, so that alone earns it a top five spot. It feels like old Taylor in the best way, without actually making me want to listen to old Taylor instead. It feels so young and playful, and it makes me smile every time I listen to it.

    2. "Epiphany"

    BEST LYRIC:  Something med school did not cover
Someone's daughter, someone's mother
Holds your hand through plastic now
"Doc, I think she's crashing out"
And some things you just can't speak about
    @taylorswift / Instagram, Republic Records

    This is basically the opposite of "betty." It's one of Taylor's most mature and dark songs, and obviously the coronavirus connection makes it especially poignant right now. Using this album to tell others's stories was a really unique and genius move on Taylor's part, and I love how she uses it to make an impact here while still keeping it personal (with her grandfather). It's just so heartbreaking and beautiful.

    1. "My Tears Ricochet"

    BEST LYRIC: And I still talk to you (When I'm screaming at the sky)
And when you can't sleep at night (You hear my stolen lullabies)
    @taylorswift / Instagram, Republic Records

    The first time I listened to this song, I knew it'd be the best on the album. Musically, it's pretty much perfect, and lyrically, it's even better. Its meanings differ: Taylor says it's about "embittered tormentor showing up at the funeral of his fallen object of obsession," and many have theorized it's about Scooter Braun. However, I think it works really well to describe any feeling of betrayal, and the deep connection you'll always feel with the person who betrayed you. After all, you can't be betrayed by a stranger.

    Listen to the whole album here:

    embed.spotify.com