In 2020, I published a post titled: My Top 20 Favourite Taylor Swift Songs! Little did I know that the following month, Taylor would surprise us all with another new album! Today I am going to rank all of the tracks on Evermore, as well as break them down. If my list seems completely offensive, I apologise. I personally love seeing how different everybody’s individual rankings are. What is relatable to one person has no resonance with another. Without further ado, let’s get into it!
Quick note: Evermore is the sister album to Folklore, so if a lot of the tracks sound similar to one another that is because there are many parallels and references between them both. Evermore represents winter/autumn whereas Folklore represents spring/summer. This is a great example of how thought out and proficient Taylor’s storytelling is.
1.) Cowboy Like Me
The moment I heard Cowboy Like Me, I knew it was my favourite track on the entire album. I rarely see this song rated highly and that astounds me. It is so underrated and captivating. In this story, Taylor croons about two con-artists that find one another and fall in love. Despite their attraction and deep adoration, they acknowledge that they could never work out long-term. You might pick up on some Getaway Car references. The backing vocals from Marcus Mumford (Mumford & Sons) is hauntingly beautiful. My favourite lyrics are: ‘forever is the sweetest con’ and ‘now you hang from my lips like The Gardens of Babylon.’ Also, that bridge! It definitely has a more smooth, country sound to it that leaves me with goosebumps. If you are sleeping on Cowboy Like Me, listen multiple times!
2.) Tis The Damn Season
Taylor has not kept it secret that she has a deep affinity for the great poets of the past and classic literature. In Tis The Damn Season, she references the late Robert Frost’s popular poem when she sings: ‘the road not taken looks real good now.’ This song is from her fictional character: Dorothea’s perspective as she returns to her hometown for the holidays; yearning to rekindle with an old flame. It speaks of a relationship that picks up right where it left off, no matter how many years have passed. It’s warm, comfortable and predictable. This is an atmospheric track that makes you want to curl up on the couch as it snows outside. It has such a special place in my heart.
3.) Tolerate It
As you probably remember from my last Taylor Swift post, her track #5 songs tend to be my favourite and Tolerate It is no exception. This song will break you, whether you can relate to it or not. When it was first released, the majority of fans speculated that it was written about Princess Diana’s unrequited love for Prince Charles. It certainly fits their story. However, Taylor has since revealed that it is actually based on the classic novel Rebecca by Daphne du Maurier – which makes me love it even more. She wrote it from the perspective of Mrs de Winter, who feels she can never live up to her husband’s former bride. That lyric: ‘now I’m begging for footnotes in the story of your life’ is enough to draw tears. In fact, the lyrics ‘I know my love should be celebrated but you just tolerate it’ resonates deeply with those in the LGBTQ+ community that do not live in areas where gay marriage is legal. There is a reference to Invisible String from Folklore where she says: ‘where’s that man who’d throw blankets over my barbed wire’/’something wrapped all of my past mistakes in barbed wire.’ It can be interpreted in so many ways that I had no choice but to put it in my top three.
Willow is Evermore’s debut single. It was the very first song we got to hear from the album and it didn’t disappoint. The melody is ethereal, with a very witchy/fantastical vibe that made it an instant hit for fans worldwide. I believe this song is about her lover Joe. When she sings: ‘I’m begging for you to take my hand, wreck my plans, that’s my man’ it makes me think of Reputation and the many references to how she wasn’t expecting Joe to shake up her entire world. In the film clip, we see Taylor following a golden string towards her love interest. As we all know by now, she uses the word gold to describe Joe and this visual hearkens back to Invisible String in Folklore, tying them together. It’s perfection!
From what I’ve seen on social media, Ivy is commonly at the top of people’s lists. It follows a tortured narrator, who is married but in love with somebody else. She’s scared of her husband finding out the truth but refuses to give her lover up. It is upbeat but also fraught with pain. Some fans believe it is linked to Illicit Affairs in Folklore, which makes sense as they are both placed at track #10 and discusses infidelity. It also possibly speaks of her fight against Scooter Braun when she says: ‘its a war, it’s the goddamn fight of my life and you started it.’ I simply live for Taylor singing ‘oh goddamn.’ It’s so good.
6.) Long Story Short
LONG STORY SHORT! This song is clearly Taylor reflecting on her life and everything that has led up to this moment. It’s so insightful, raw and real but catchy at the same time. Taylor is letting her fans and enemies know that she survived, is doing well and not the same person she used to be but in the best way possible. There is even a section towards the end where she talks to her younger self. She sings: ‘past me, I wanna tell you not to get lost in these petty things. Your nemeses will defeat themselves before you get the chance to swing.’ Not only is this so relatable, it’s a testament to her growth as a person. She isn’t afraid to show the world that she is a flawed human being that continues to better herself. It’s also nice to hear how happy and content she is with Joe.
7.) No Body, No Crime
HAIM fans rejoice because Taylor finally released a song with her dearest friends and fellow artists. Taylor has revealed in a couple of interviews that her love for true crime podcasts led to the writing of this song. It follows her friend Este (HAIM’s singer/bassist) who believes her husband is having an affair. She knows he’s being unfaithful but cannot prove it. Suddenly, Este has gone missing and her husband’s mistress has moved in. Taylor knows he killed his wife and is determined to avenge her. As the song progresses, it becomes clear that Taylor (with the help of Este’s sister Danielle) took matters into her own hands and made quick work of the cheating husband. It’s so gritty and good. You can’t help but cheer her on!
This is a very hard song to listen to and one I cannot do without shedding a tear. In Folklore, Taylor wrote Epiphany as a tribute to her grandfather who fought in the war. It was touching but didn’t break me like Marjorie did. This song celebrates her late grandmother who Taylor adored. If you watch the official lyric video, you will get to see snippets of the late Marjorie. She was a very beautiful, positive, loving and caring woman. She was also an opera singer. At the point where Taylor sings: ‘if I didn’t know better, I swear you were singing to me now’ we hear actual backing vocals from Marjorie. If that doesn’t make you cry, nothing will. In 2020 I lost my grandmother to a fight against dementia, therefore this track makes it difficult to write about, let alone listen to. It’s the perfect reminder to treasure your grandparents while they are still alive and ask them questions.
9.) Champagne Problems
Taylor co-wrote this song with her partner Joe, under the pseudonym: William Bowery. It is said to have one of the best bridges ever written in her entire career. This track is about a relationship between two people that are in completely different places in their lives. Taylor begins by singing from the perspective of somebody that has turned down a proposal; thus breaking their lover’s heart. She then sings from the point of view of the other character’s family. How excited they were about the impending engagement (with champagne ready to pop) but were ultimately let down. It’s about not realising that the person you’re with isn’t the one, until you’re faced with the possibility of forever with them. She hopes that whoever the other character meets in the future will patch up the tapestry she shred. Fans were initially worried that this was a breakup song but Taylor has since confirmed that her and Joe just love writing sad songs together. The melody is everything!
This is probably the most upbeat song on the album. It’s from the perspective of Dorothea’s old flame, that we learn about in Tis The Damn Season. He is in awe of her glamorous life but also knows her as the country, hometown girl he grew up with. He wants her to understand that she can always come home and just be herself with him. Many fans have speculated that Dorothea is actually about Selena Gomez and Taylor’s never-ending adoration for her. They are friendship goals! I just love how wholesome this song is.
11.) Gold Rush
By now you’re probably yelling at your screen, wondering why I put Gold Rush so low on this list. Unfortunately, it hasn’t really made much of an impression on me. You know from my previous Taylor post that I am a huge fan of Jack Antonoff’s work. When this album was released, he tweeted that this song was just as dear to him as August but I don’t feel the same way. There’s nothing inherently wrong with it, I just don’t rate it as highly as some of the other tracks. It’s clearly about Joe (hence the title) but from the perspective of an alternate reality where they don’t end up together. I love the reference to her previous album when she sings: ‘my mind turns your life into folklore, I can’t dare to dream about you anymore.’ It’s her dreams and wishes of what it would be like to be with someone as beautiful as him. Luckily for her, it’s a reality!
This is another atmospheric, frosty song that makes you think of a cabin in the middle of the snow. It is also co-written by William Bowery and the second track featuring the legendary Bon Iver. Fans were hoping against hope that this was essentially Taylor’s wedding song to Joe but it’s actually all about healing. It features one of my favourite lyrics of all time: ‘writing letters addressed to the fire.’ Shivers! In this song, Taylor laments about the pain of losing her music to Scott Borchetta and Scooter Braun. She feels like her heart will never stop hurting over their betrayal. All of a sudden, the tempo changes and Bon Iver breaks into his piece. When Taylor resumes singing, she is able to see the light again and realises that the pain won’t be forevermore. It’s such an emotional journey. I wish it was a bit shorter but I do really like it.
13.) Coney Island
I’m not really sure if this song is in reference to her past relationship with Harry Styles because it mentions: ‘and when I got into the accident, the sight that flashed before me was your face.’ This feels like a nod to Out Of The Woods. From what I’ve gathered, this is about two lovers that had a lot of potential but fizzled out unexpectedly. William Bowery also co-wrote this somber track. In the second verse, Matt Berninger from The National, takes on the male POV’s perspective. He understands that their relationship has been pushed to the edge and feels responsible. There is a Dear John reference here when he croons: ‘did I paint your bluest skies the darkest gray?’ It’s not my favourite track but I do love the acoustic guitar and darker undertones that one wouldn’t expect from a song titled: Coney Island.
14.) It’s Time To Go
This is the bonus and final track on Evermore. It sums up Taylor’s journey through one of the darkest and most painful times of her life. Not only does she call out Scooter Braun – ‘now he sits on his throne in his palace of bones, prayin to his greed. He’s got my past frozen behind glass but I’ve got me’ – but there is also a theory that she’s addressing Karlie Kloss’s alleged betrayal: ‘when the words of a sister come back in whispers that prove she was not.’ This song is essentially about knowing when it’s time to move on from something that has hurt you deeply. It highlights Taylor’s maturity and vulnerability. It’s actually brave and strong to walk away from a situation that is no longer serving you.
15.) Right Where You Left Me
Despite the catchy tune, this song is surprisingly dark and sad. It’s about a breakup that happened years ago. Everyone and everything has moved on but Taylor’s character is still frozen in time from when the heartache happened. She is unable to get past it. It has a country feel, reminiscent of her older music but much more fully realised. It’s not my favourite but I can appreciate the relatable concept.
Happiness reminds me a bit of Epiphany. It’s almost too slow to feel like a structured song and therefore it doesn’t rate very highly for me. One thing it does have, are multiple Great Gatsby references. There is: ‘all you want from me now is the green light of forgiveness’ and ‘I hope she’ll be a beautiful fool.’ It also hearkens to Seven from Folklore with the connecting lyrics of: ‘honey when I’m above the trees’/please, picture me above the trees.’ Keeping in theme with the album, it’s a song about moving forward and knowing there is light at the end of a dark tunnel. Some fans believe it should’ve been her track #5 but I don’t agree. I fee the lyrics are extremely relatable. Sometimes it’s hard to believe that there will be happiness after an ending…but it will come in time.
My least favourite song on the album and the one I tend to skip, is Closure. I know, I’m sorry. What bothers me about this track is how convoluted it feels. The opening tune is distorted and different to the rest of the music. When Taylor sings the chorus, she puts on a fake British accent that feels a tad unnecessary. That is just my opinion. It has a more immature vibe to it that doesn’t seem to fit in with the rest of the more fully fledged songs. I can appreciate that she is telling her enemies that she doesn’t need their closure but I wish the lyrics and melody had been executed differently.
I hope you enjoyed this post! Please let me know your ranking in the comments. Would you like me to do a breakdown for Fearless 2.0? Also, leave more Easter Eggs I missed! What do you think of Evermore?
Thanks for reading! Peace & Love xoxo