I put out my initial rankings. They were gut reaction. Now that we are more than two weeks past, I have listened to this album far too many times for my own good now. I was part of the record breaking streaming week for Taylor Swift. I was part of top 10 on Billboard. I don’t care if I am a cow in the herd. I was (and still am) loving the wave.

Now hereare my thoughts on Midnights (3 AM Edition). These are how I would rank the songs of Midnights (3 AM) edition.


Number 20
Glitch (Track 18)

Right off the bat, I don’t love the opening with the voice. Just not a fan. This unfortunately is a theme that runs through some of the songs on Midnights. The layering is weird.

My favorite line from this song is in the chorus: “He wanted it comfortable, I wanted that pain. He wanted a bride, I was making my own name. Chasing that fame, he stayed the same”

Really the line “He wanted it comfortable, I wanted that pain.” This is a song about how the guy is ready to settle down, but she still wants the grind and the pain of the achieving something else before settling down.


Number 19
Midnight Rain (Track 6)

This song appears to be a glitch on this album.

Thank you, I am here all week.

The constant static sounds in the background irritate me, but more damning…none of the lyrics in this song pack any punch for me. And that is the reason i listen to music and in particular, Taylor Swift.


Number 18
Dear Reader (Track 20)

A main line in Dear Reader is “Never take advice from someone who is falling apart.” But the question I have is how do you know who is falling apart? What if you are blinded by an emotion (some would say love) and you can’t see your person crumbling before you?

Dear Reader is another song that has many different layerings of voices and I am just not a fan.

The song does get better as it passes on, and I get more of a sense of angst in the final two minutes.

The song is important to those who are too hard on themselves and Taylor is telling the audience to not hear the words of those who are hurt and speaking to you through their hate. The idea of “find another, you should find another” is to find someone else to listen to and look up to. It is a nice sentiment, but I wish it was a better song.


Number 17
Lavender Haze (Track 1)

There we are. Opening up the entire album with “Meet me at midnight.” She has had a knack for good opening line of albums lately. Just think back to folklore and the the kick-off song the 1, which begins “I’m doing good, I’m on some new shit.” Need a good hook, and Taylor is baiting us all in.

Lavender Haze is a unique song to open up Midnights with because it is not really the entire vibe of the album. It is a little bit electric sounding and the water sounds bubbling in the background. It maybe is a little bit to EDM-esq, but it really isn’t like that at all.

I do enjoy the chorus to Lavender Haze because it is sung in a higher pitch, which I also tend to sing in (to the dismay of my fiancé).

I did not know that the phrase Lavender Haze was actually used in the 1950s as a way to tell someone you are in love, so that is cool. I get her line now about “The 1950s shit they want from me.”


Number Sixteen
Labyrinth (Track 10)

Labyrinth has the great premise of the song, but what the hell is the “da-da-da” electronic beat thing that is happening throughout the song? I don’t like that part one bit. It sounds like you are dying in an old video game or you have reached a dead end in an old school retro arcade game. Maybe the name of Labyrinth makes me think of that context, but all I can think of is Bill Paxton’s “GAME OVER MAN!

So we have the weird as beat, and then the guy coming in. during the second half. Why does this keep on happening? Why is it in more than just a handful of these songs, the second half somewhat devolves into something less enjoyable. Is it my attention span?


Number Fifteen
Bejeweled (Track 9)

Much like the song below this one, I wish I liked Bejeweled more. I really want to. But I just…don’t.

I don’t like the penthouse of your heart line. Not a fan. Just a wee bit too cheesy. On the other end though, I do love the opening of the chorus. “Best believe I’m still bejeweled when I walk in the room I can make the whole room shimmer”. That is Taylor Swift in a nutshell. We saw the dresses she was wearing in the lead up to this album. She was stunning and shining like a bright light.

Taylor is not as public as she once was, and that makes her presence even more powerful now when she does appear. She shines even brighter.

Listening to Bejeweled, I think this song harmonizes really well with Sparks Fly. Now that Taylor is going on tour, I can easily see a connection between these two songs to bridge a gap and give the fans a throwback.


Number Fourteen
Anti-Hero (Track 3)

I wished I liked this song more. But I am just not a huge fan of Anti-Hero.

I am sorry to report that I do agree with my Barstool coworkers Brandon and Rone that the line about a sexy baby is weird. I know that it is a connection to 30 Rock and Tina Fey, but still the word choice is enough to turn heads.

I do love the line: “Did you hear my covert narcissism I disguise as altruism Like some kind of congressman? I do like that she is punching at the politicians. She was vocal about it in recent elections and she made a point of it in her documentary Miss Americana (2020).

I can not tell with this song if Taylor is being somewhat self-aware, or if she is poking fun at it, or if she is doing a combination of both?

It may be answered a little bit in the lyric “I’ll stare directly at the sun, but never in the mirror” where she says that she would rather burn her eyes out than her own self refection. So she doesn’t like being the Anti-Hero?


Number Thirteen
Question…? (Track 7)

I love a good short story, and Question…? has a fantastic one.

“Did you ever have someone kiss you in a crowded room. And every single one of your friends was makin’ fun of you. But fifteen seconds later, thеy were clappin’ too?”

Have you ever been to a college party and seen this or been a part of it? This is the not wanting to be the center of attention, but then you get swept up in the moment and its intoxicating, but by doing that you put yourself in the limelight where you are uncomfortable.

-I can picture a music video for Questions…?. It is at an office party or something and then the couple always flirting finally hooks up and everyone loves it but then the guy or girl gets scared.


Number Twelve
You’re On Your Own, Kid (Track 5)

Taylor has to be talking to her younger self in You’re On Your Own, Kid, right? My hypothesis seems to be correct because there is a reference to a BFF crush but her being in the friend zone. This was a theme of her older songs. We have You Belong With Me. We have Tear Drops On my Guitar. This is one of those super relatable things she wrote about in a younger life.

The chorus in this song crescendos really nicely. It is a wonderful build up.

There are some random wind instruments thrown into the song that throw me for a little bit of a loop.

OH, ARE WE GETTING A CARRIE REFERENCE IN A TAYLOR SWIFT SONG?? Oh hell yes.

“I looked around in a blood soaked gown”. This is probably a euphemism or hinting at moments where the narrator of the song having to be in front of an audience while being embarrassed and at a loss for words. Assuming Taylor is the voice of this song, we know she doesn’t have telekinesis as a power. But she does have song writing…and she loves to weild that around.


Number Eleven
Vigilante Shit (Track 8)

This is the most Reputation song of any song on Midnights.

This song tells a story of revenge, and I am a big fan of those. I enjoy Picture To Burn and songs of that ilk that are a bit more rock-centric and have a bit of extra poison laced in the veins.

When the lyric “Don’t get sad, get even” gets sung out, you can just picture everyone (including myself) yelling about how that is the Taylor Swift that we all know. This is the Swift who is rerecording all of her songs to spite the music business model. This is the Swift that throws daggers in all of her lyrics.

One such line that is thrown out with a ton of venom is “he was doing lines….and crossing all of mine…”. I did not expect to have cocaine in a Taylor Swift song!


Number Ten
High Infidelity (Track 17)

The keeping count of things that is constantly mentioned in High Fidelity hits me right in the feels in terms of my past relationships. In long story short from evermore, she has the line “No more keepin’ score”, and this is resisting something that has obviously greatly affected her before.

The point of the view of this song is that she woman singing had some infidelity on April 29th, and I would love to know why Taylor selected that date. I don’t know why, but there are deep Swifties out there who know.

The song also mentions the idea of dragging feet down the aisle, which I really hope that my fiancé does not do. I promise to never kill Emma by not loving her enough. What an awesome line. Brutal.

Also love the bit in the song where it is mentioned the guys ideal life (and picket fences) is not loving his wife a ton. His ideal life is not putting enough effort in. That would make sense why she would commit some infidelity.


Number Nine
Snow On The Beach (Track 4)

This song is featuring Lana Del Rey, and from a non-musical mind, i think this collaboration works. When Lana Del Rey’s voice becomes most vocal around the three minute bark…sheesh that helps this song so much. It hooked me into a song that still have a minute to go. It arrived at perfectly the right time.

How insane is it that Taylor can incorporate the Aurora Borealis so seamless in a lyric and not even hesitate throwing in a part of the song that is with pace.

Have you ever seen Snow On The Beach? It is legit an awesome visual. It is something to watch from the window of a lake house and become mesmerized by. If you want the perfect setting for a crossword to be done, it would be watching literal Snow on the Beach with a hot cup of coffee.


Number Eight
Would’ve, Could’ve, Should’ve (Track 19)

Love, love, love the strings entrance.

John Mayer gets dragged again. Doesn’t seem like a great gut. Taylor mentions the age of 19 again, which was highlights in Dear John. I fucking LOVE the lyrics: “Memories feel like weapons.” If you want to completely disarm someone, tell them a memory that they cringe at or that they do not want to remember. I know I have to do a mental eraser to get out of those funks. Also the line before that “scared of ghosts…” the ghosts of past relationships creating memories that can harm you till this day.

I do feel like Would’ve, Could’ve, Should’ve starts off angry and slower, but then speeds up. I like the more angsty parts. Let’s get spiteful.


Number Seven
The Great War (Track 14)

What do we think The Great War is? My really simple thinking is that it is just a massive argument in a relationship. Something that would be a chasm that many can not pass through.

The Great War has fantastic pacing. I don’t know how to describe it rather than very even. It is like a smooth pond you are looking at….which is a little ironic because Taylor is describing something that is much more of a tempest ilk.

I freaking love the line “but diesel is desire, you were playing with fire” It is awesome. It is remarkable. It is followed up with “And maybe it’s the past talking” which eludes to her trauma being a dangerous source of trauma that can burn anyone around her.

Taylor loves to write about moments where she feels like she is nearly losing someone. “That was the night I nearly lost you. I really thought I’d lost you”

I really enjoy The Great War because it is a song that reminds everyone that they have scars. Sometimes in arguments with significant others, those scars get opened, and it is not the fault of the person you love. It takes strength for both people to admit that. It takes strength of the person being hurt to know that there are deeper problems. It takes strength from the partner to realize that you are getting the brunt of something you don’t 100% deserve.


Number Six
Karma (Track 11)

Taylor Swift writing about Karma is the most Taylor Swift thing of all time and I am personally shocked that this has not happened this brazenly before.

Karma is a bop. It has a chorus that is fun to sing and most importantly, very easy to remember. It references Taylor’s own love for her cats. We love that as a new cat guy here.

Taylor Swift is a classic “it all evens out” or “what comes around goes around” type of person. The “it is what it is” and it will all sort it self out mentality is a way to relieve stress when someone angers you. I imagine with the spotlight on Taylor, she has to love when Karma wields its head.

What monster would be Karma? Why do I think it is Medusa? Frozen looking into the eyes or hypocrisy?


Number Five
Paris (Track 16)

Am I partial to French things? Yes.

Am I engaged to someone who is French? Yes.

Am I probably a little biased to like this song? Yes.

I absolutely LOVEEEE the lyrics: “Drew a map on your bedroom ceiling, No, I didn’t see the news. ‘Cause we were somewhere else.” This is just a wonderful illustration of when you are lost in happiness. When you are dating and you had a great time and you just lay on your bed thinking about it. Or when you are living with someone and the two of you are laying on the bed together just talking and staring at the ceiling. It is a visual that illuminates optimism and also comfort.

There are champagne references in Paris, which reminds of the cheap rosé line from Maroon, and also just reminds me of champagne problems off the album evermore.


Number Four
Sweet Nothing (Track 12)

What an awesome start to Sweet Nothing. The soft acoustic start is mesmerizing.

I 100% empathize with the idea that of not needing anything but sweet nothing from somebody. I tell this to anyone who asks what I need for birthday, Christmas, etc. I don’t need anything at all. Literally all I need is comfort and someone to put their legs on my lap while we are sitting on the couch.

The line “You’re In the kitchen hummin” is very reminiscent of my own life with Emma. Everyday I come home from work and she is just chilling in the kitchen cooking, humming along to some song or watching some show she has seen 100 times before. It is one of those comforts. One of those small things that I remember everyday and makes me excited to go home.

if you are in a relationship you are 100% comfortable in, then the song Sweet Nothing has a little notes that remind you of how happy you are.


Number Three
Bigger Than The Whole Sky (Track 15)

Bigger Than The Whole Sky is such a sad long. it fits my ethos, thank you so much Taylor.

When the first “Goodbye, Goodbye, Goodbye” comes in I get the goosebumps hard. It is like a cloud of emotions comes over me and I refuse to wear a rain jacket it. Let it was over me.

The day after Bigger Than The Whole Sky came out, there were tons of write up and think pieces that talk about this song being about a premature or untimely death of a child. When Taylor said that Midnights is nights were you can’t sleep…safe to say that such a tragedy would leave people exhausted and up at all hours of the night. We know that Taylor has written about such things like in the songs Ronan, and she has a beautiful way and gift about it.

I can’t not comment on the weird line about a bird flapping its wings over Asia. I understand it is supposed to hint at fate and the crazy connectivity of things, but it is something that is a little odd.


Number 2
Maroon (Track 2)

I can not tell you how much I love the line “Your roommate’s cheap-ass screw-top rose, that’s how”. Just amazing. The first time I heard it I knew exactly the vibe that Taylor was going for with the lyric. It is such a specific thing that can apply to so many people.

Then we have the “hollowed-eyed in the hallway. Carnations you had thought were roses…”. First the fantastic sound of “hollowed” with “hallway” is alliteration done right…then comparing Carnations to Roses; their love is dead. It is so dead. But my heart is so alive.

“The Lips I used to call home…” god Taylor. These lyrics are my home.

Red is such a big color for Taylor. I mean, she had an album called Red.

Oh, and then at the start of song she mentions: “Laughing with my feet in your lap. Like you were my closest friend” I too believe that love is the best type of friendship on can have. This just adds to that mantra Taylor has shared before.

Also, how loud are the crowds at her upcoming concerts going to scream “THAT’S A REAL FUCKING LEGACY!”

Maroon is such an important song on this album for me because I didn’t love Lavender Haze, but Maroon brought me all the way back in.


Number 1
Mastermind (Track 13)

There is a reason there is a ton of attention around Mastermind. You ask anyone what their top five songs are, this song is going to appear somewhere on that list.

When the song ends with “Saw a side smirk on your face. You knew the entire time. You knew I was a Mastermind.”, all you can do is raise your hands to the heavens and just squeal. Taylor Swift talking about how she always planned out her crushes but this time, this one guy, saw her and say her game. This guy saw through the game, but still let her play the game. He made sure that she was still comfortable getting herself out there before revealing that he knows what is going on. That is both the cutest and hottest thing someone can do.

And who made permission for the bridge to be so god damn emotional? For any kid who struggled to fit in and be themselves when they were younger, that 30 second portion of Mastermind is perfect.


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