All The Signs Taylor Swift Isn't Releasing A New Album In October 2016
A legion of dedicated Swifties were crushed on Sunday when Taylor Swift didn’t release a surprise album after plenty of speculation that it could come out on Oct. 23. Historically, the 1989 singer has been known to release her albums two years apart and ideally in October, so, with the month wrapping up, everyone’s losing heart. Now, in the past I’ve argued why the pop star's next record could or should be due in fall, ripe for Swift season. In light of this disappointment, however, maybe it’s wise to play devil’s advocate while the rest of you collect yourselves.
Yes, children, I hate to cancel Christmas (cancel Halloween? Cancel a holiday that ends with you getting the gift of Swift). But it may just be true: you won’t be getting new songs on schedule. And that isn’t the end of the world, because I also don’t think Swift is over, like the kids have been saying. Music is her talent and her livelihood, and, even in some recent tough times, I’m sure there’s more on the way. It just seems that it may be a bit more delayed than usual.
And, if you need to accept that reality, here is some possible evidence as to why we may have to wait this out a bit longer.
EXHIBIT A: The "NOPE" Heard Around The World
We should start with the clearest, most concise response to all the album-dropping speculation. When a fan took to Twitter and asked Scott Borchetta, the CEO of Swift's level Big Machine Records, if a new album was coming out in October, he responded with an Earth-shattering, "NOPE." Now, this comment was made back in August with little explanation, so maybe it's not as damning as it sounds. On the other hand, if the Emperor looks like he's wearing no clothes, he's wearing no clothes; outright lying about that, even on Twitter, seems a smidge unprofessional.
EXHIBIT B: The Kelsea Ballerini Dead-End
Country singer and Swift friend (who isn't?) Kelsea Ballerini posted a recording on Snapchat in September that sounded slightly Swiftian. Immediately speculation was that it was, in fact, a leaked Swift track, or at least a collaboration. However, Ballerini nixed the rumor on Twitter by confirming it was all her own work, but she was just as stoked for Swift's new material as the rest of us. So maybe there is new material out there, but it ain't that.
EXHIBIT C: Swift Might Still Be Taking Time Off
At the tale end of 2015 and her last world tour, Swift told NME that 2016 was supposed to be a gigantic breather from 1989 . “I think I should take some time off. I think people might need a break from me. I’m going to… I don’t know. Hang out with my friends. Write new music. Maybe not write new music. I don’t know." It's vague, but no one can deny that she took a definite step back this year, at least professionally.
EXHIBIT D: She Might Be Wanting To Change Things Up Completely
In the same interview, Swift spoke about how she'd possibly follow-up the mega-success of 1989, and there was a subtle promise of newness. "How could the next one be as big? Maybe the next album will be a bridge to somewhere else. Or maybe I’ll just go ahead and change everything," she said.
As per usual, this could've been a throwaway comment, or it could be a sincere declaration that she wants to start a new chapter with this album. You know what, she's been following the same pattern for a decade, and that's why fans are so hotly anticipating this album to be birthed during Swift Season. At the same time, she has an openness towards malleability, as seen in the way she's genre-shifted in the last half of that decade. So, yeah, she could want to start fresh with a new album trend.
EXHIBIT E: Candidness With Fans Is Swift's M.O.
Now, I say that, in the sense that post-Kanye West video, you can't really trust that Swift is being 110 percent honest to her fans at all times. Which is fine, I'm not a teenager girl who emotionally relies on that transparency. But Swift's persona is based on being a cool, relatable girl, a friend who's keeping you in the loop with her 4th of July parties and shares your love of cats. Sure, she could drop a secret album on Swifties, but it just may come off as uncharacteristically deceptive: usually the only surprises she gives fans is big-ass presents during Swiftmas.
EXHIBIT F: She May Be Concerned About Her Bad Reputation Following Her Into This Album
Between the aforementioned Kanye call and the short-lived Hiddleswift (which followed so quickly after the disintegration of Tayvin), maybe she doesn't want recent scandals to sully this new baby record. Of course, if Swift's next effort is great enough it could also make for a substantial comeback album. It could go either way. But if we're going to lean towards the
not-releasing-an-album-soon argument, I could understand if her wanted to put some distance between this and her slight fall from grace.
EXHIBIT G: The "13" Attached To The Release Date Wouldn’t Be A True 13
Most Swifties know that our girl has an obsession with the number 13, and The Washington Post claimed to have cracked the code to a potential secret album dropping on on 10/23/16. Essentially, it comes from breaking down the numbers, because 1 + 0 + 2 + 3 + 1 + 6 = 13. Guys, come on. I mean, I'm all about Swift album conspiracy theories too, it is my bread and butter. And that one took thought (and basic math skills), which you have to respect. But come on. In retrospect, that seems like a bit of a sell, a little too sophisticated for a pop album. In any case, we all know it didn't come out on Oct. 23, so debunked.
EXHIBIT H: Honestly, You Can't Write Off November
You know what, Swift's sophomore effort Fearless debuted on November 11, so, honestly, if she put out the new album next month it would still be in line for Swift season, if not slightly overripe.
I rest my case.
Images: Giphy (7)