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So Listen: “evermore” is better than "folklore"

It’s time to talk about one of the most contentious topics in the Swiftie community: which of the “sister albums” is better — "folklore" or “evermore.”

These albums are very similar, which is why they are often compared. For example, it’s difficult to compare “Reputation” and “1989” because the albums are so incredibly different. Swift has experimented with several genres in her legendary career: from country, to R&B, bubblegum pop, dream pop and now folk music in the form of "folklore" and “evermore."

Taylor Swift released "folklore" in August of 2020 and “evermore” in December 2020. It was very clear that a lot of these songs were written one after the other, as Swift has stated herself. All Swifties have an album between these two that speaks to them a little more than the other. It is a personal decision, I will recognize. However, objectively, “evermore” is the better album.

“evermore” does everything "folklore" does, but does it better. “evermore” as an album gives us the pain felt in a relationship, every single hurtful feeling. If there is something you want to feel deeper in the process of a breakup or ending to a situationship, there is a song on “evermore” for it. 

While it is true that "folklore" is a masterpiece, “evermore” does something that "folklore" does not. The album "folklore" has a sense of cohesion and story-telling that “evermore” does not have — which I believe was stylistically on purpose by Swift. The sense of disorganization in “evermore” is comparable to the feelings of a breakup that this album conveys. “evermore” is absolutely a breakup album – nearly every emotion you can feel in a breakup is conveyed in this album.

Swift covers the feeling of waiting for your lover to come back to you, feeling frozen in time and unable to move on in “right where you left me.” This is arguably one of Swift’s best songs ever. It paints a picture so well that you can quite literally see it in your head if you really listen. 

Swift turns 180 degrees from this feeling in track five of “evermore." In “happiness,” Swift describes the feeling of being past a relationship and recognizing that there was happiness in the relationship, but there will also be happiness after the relationship. In one of Swift’s most mature lyrics, she says “I can’t make you go away by making you the villain.” This song demonstrates how much she has grown up, and anyone who has grown up with songs like “Better than Revenge” or “I Knew You Were Trouble” can attest to and see this growth.

This maturity continues throughout the album on tracks “it’s time to go” and “closure.” She recognizes the importance of walking away – and staying away – from a relationship that no longer serves her in both tracks. 

Healing from a break-up is not linear. Sometimes we feel fine, and then we revert back to our sadness. Sometimes, we head home for the holidays and reconnect with an old flame, like Swift conveys in “‘tis the damn season.” Sometimes, after so much time has passed, we ruminate on all of the past heartbreaks we have ever felt, sitting on a bench wondering what could have been and all that we have lost (“coney island”). 

Even though "folklore" may seem like a better album based on storytelling as a whole, the songs on “evermore” are more powerful and more emotional. Every time I listen to “evermore” I can see all of the songs in my head because lyrically, this is the most descriptive Swift has ever been in her music. 

I have a very big respect for "folklore" and I listen to it frequently, but “evermore” speaks to me in a way that "folklore" is unable to. The emotions of “evermore” are more raw, perhaps Swift’s most raw emotion ever in her music, making it the better of the two, and quite possibly her best work to date.

Mikayla Rochelle is a graduate student studying public administration at Ohio University. Please note that the views and opinions of the columnists do not reflect those of The Post. What are your thoughts? Tell Mikayla by tweeting her at @mikayla_roch.

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