Five months after the surprise arrival of Folklore, an album written and recorded entirely in quarantine, Taylor Swift is doing it again: Evermore, the singer-songwriter’s ninth studio album, will be released on Friday.
“To be clear, we just couldn’t stop writing songs,” Swift wrote in a post on Instagram Thursday morning. “I’ve never done this before,” she added, saying that she treated each previous album as a discrete aesthetic cycle and turned her attention to the next. For the musician, “Folklore” meant a musical shift, a departure from the lavishly produced pop of the three albums that she has released since 2014 (“1989”, “Reputation” and “Lover”) towards quieter, more atmospheric rock.
“I loved the escape I found in these imaginary / non-imaginary stories,” she wrote. “I loved how you captured the dreamscapes, tragedies, and epic love stories that were lost and found in your life. So I just kept writing it. “
There is the same creative team in “Evermore” as in “Folklore”: Aaron Dessner of indie rock band The National and producer Jack Antonoff (one of their longtime collaborators) and Justin Vernon of Bon Iver and William Bowery (aka them ) Friend, the actor Joe Alwyn, who has credits for the “folklore” songs “Exile” and “Betty”). New guests are Haim and the National.
“Folklore” was a chart blockbuster that was number 1 on the Billboard 200 for eight straight weeks and was the first album in 2020 to sell 1 million copies. Last month, it received five of Swift’s six total Grammy nominations for the 2021 ceremony, including Album of the Year; The first single, “Cardigan,” is the best song.
While much of the music industry slowed this year due to Covid-19, wiping out live touring and causing some major artists to delay or change release schedules, Swift has been promoting “folklore” throughout and inciting fans through social media the mythologies of the songs and the release of many goods.
She performed at a socially distant version of the Academy of Country Music Awards in Nashville in September and was virtually Artist of the Year at the American Music Awards in November. Also last month, Swift released Folklore: The Long Pond Studio Sessions on Disney +, a documentary about the making of Folklore that included reduced performances of his songs.
“Evermore” will consist of 15 tracks, announced the singer, who will turn 31 on Sunday. But she also teased two bonus tracks in alternative editions. The album’s release at midnight coincides with a music video for “Willow,” the first single.
Joe Coscarelli contributed to the coverage.