+ Playlists

What Critics Are Saying about Taylor Swift's Reputation

Taylor Swift’s long-awaited sixth album Reputation dropped last night (after leaking earlier that day), following a shaky lead up that saw her shy away from social media, tussle with the ACLU, and release a handful of poorly reviewed singles.  So now that the full 15-track album has arrived, was it worth the wait? Find out what critics are saying about Reputation:

Taylor Swift might've bungled the Reputation rollout by leading with the worst song on the album, but at the end of the day, Reputation strikes the exact mix of necessary roughness and personal reckoning needed to shake off a calendar year of mounting turmoil. –Vulture

On 2014's 1989, Swift showed she could deliver great pop songs. On Reputation, her sixth album and second pop effort, she has mastered it. –The Associated Press

The sparkling, writerly synth-pop of 1989 has been jettisoned almost entirely, replaced by thudding trap beats, Vegas EDM, melancholy Drive-wave synthesizers, and splashes of Miami bass. More often than not, it works. –The A.V. Club

As you probably know from the singles like "Ready for It?" and "Look What You Made Me Do," Swift's delivery on Reputation often veers awkwardly close to a rap flow, with a debt to Right Said Fred's novelty single, "I'm Too Sexy." (Of all the sentences I never thought I'd type in 2017 …) Even in the high points of Reputation—and there are a few—Swift doesn't sound like someone setting trends so much as sprinting to keep up with them. –The Ringer

Reputation is an oddly bifurcated creation, half obsessed with grim score-settling and celebrity damage, half infatuated with a lover who takes her away from all that. –Entertainment Weekly

And even though what's au courant in pop — post-Drake lite-soul noir, or gothic but plain dramatists like Halsey and Selena Gomez — doesn't necessarily play to Ms. Swift's strengths, she barrels ahead here, finding ways to incorporate it into her arsenal, and herself into it. Some things are lost, to be sure, but it turns out that Ms. Swift is as effective a distiller of everyone else's pop ideas as she was at charting her own sui generis path. –The New York Times

It may be mired in bitterness and gossip, but the pop star’s songwriting smarts and lyrical prowess are impossible to deny on her sixth album. –The Guardian

This is an album full of one-on-one adult love songs. That's a daring swerve from a songwriter who's scored so many brilliant hits about pursuing the next romantic high. Taylor might love the players, but nowhere near as much as she loves the game. –Rolling Stone

Reputation is a big, brash, all-guns-blazing blast of weaponised pop that grapples with the vulnerability of the human heart as it is pummelled by 21st-century fame. –The Telegraph

On Reputation, the Taylor she's chosen to show us is one that's more confident than ever. Her adventurous sound is coupled with lyrics that are drunker and more sexual than ever — she even drops her first in-song swear with a "shit" in "I Did Something Bad." It might not be everybody's cup of tea, but she's convincingly committed to it. –Exclaim

From a purely musical standpoint, it’s a pretty good album--even when she’s throwing this many ideas against the wall, Swift is too talented a songwriter to miss her target more than a few times per record. –Boston Globe