Today I am going to be ranking the vault tracks from Speak Now Taylor’s Version! I am planning on doing this for Red, Fearless and the other re-recordings to come, so stay tuned for those. If you want to check out my honorary Swiftie menu, please click here.
A Brief Note on Speak Now
I truly fathomed the brilliance of Speak Now in 2022. Taylor originally wanted to name it Enchanted after her iconic, fan-favourite song but her former manager (boo!) suggested the title would sound too fairy-tale, reminiscent of Fearless and youthful. Speak Now held more weight, maturity and boldness. It was her confessional album. Each number represented a message to a person/s that had impacted her life in some way. It was her way of ‘speaking now’ and speaking up. At this point in her musical career, we saw Taylor take on more of an edge. She hit us with tracks like Mean, Better Than Revenge and Dear John. With so much to say and nothing to lose, fans can attest that some of her most vulnerable and heart-breaking lyrics can be found in the third era. The vault tracks fill in the gaps and provide further perspective of what was going on for her during this period of time.
SNTV might just be her best re-recording yet. Taylor has blessed us big time with these truly remarkable bonus songs. Without further ado, from my favourite to least favourite, let’s get into it!
1.) When Emma Falls In Love
Without a doubt, my favourite vault track is When Emma Falls In Love. I loved it on first listen and have continued to fall deeper over time. The production transports me back to old country Taylor. She has since confessed it is dedicated to her dear friend and actress, Emma Stone. In this song, Swift expresses how she wishes she could be like her gal pal when it comes to romantic relationships. She is so authentic and vulnerable in her honesty. The line: ‘like if Cleopatra grew up in a small town’ might be the best thing I’ve ever heard. I also adore the lyric: ‘she’s so New York, when she’s in L.A.” It’s nice to have a friendship song from Taylor. We don’t get many of them and this one is perfection.
2.) I Can See You
In second place, we have I Can See You and that’s because it’s a bonafide BOP! I don’t think any of us were expecting it to be so sexy. I can understand why it didn’t make the original album track-list. Her former manager would have still been trying to preserve her “good girl” image. Since the release of Speak Now TV, the music video for this excellent song has dropped and it’s truly iconic. Taylor Lautner, Joey King and Presley Cash make fantastic guest appearances, working as a team to break out her version from the vault. I love that she involved some key players from that era. If I had to guess who it was intended for, I would say Taylor Lautner. She reflects on the initial attraction stage, picturing what it would be like to be with him. I love running to this song. It’s a new workout favourite.
3.) Foolish One
In third place, we have Foolish One, which is beautiful song. In this track, Taylor is the ‘foolish one’, addressing her past self with some tough love. I think it’s safe to say, she is singing about John Mayer and his inability to make her feel important when they were together. It has such vulnerability. The lyrics: “the day is gonna come for your confessions of love, when all is said and done, he just wasn’t the one” are particularly hard-hitting. In the light of her recent breakup with Joe Alwyn, I hope she gets exactly that someday.
4.) Electric Touch (feat. Fall Out Boy)
In fourth place, we have Electric Touch, featuring Fall Out Boy. This particular track had me so excited because I’m a huge fan of the aforementioned punk band. I actually saw them in concert when I was 18. It’s safe to say, I couldn’t wait to hear the blend of Taylor and Patrick’s vocals. It did not disappoint! It has a soft rock vibe that fits in perfectly with the Speak Now era. Some have speculated that it’s the first Jake Gyllenhaal song because Taylor says: “got a history of stories ending sadly” which links to The Story of Us. If she’s referencing the end of her relationship with John Mayer, Jake was the next love interest after that. She dated both of them in the year 2010. It’s so much fun!
In fifth place, we have Timeless. I absolutely love this album closer, it’s just not on the same level as the first four for me. This is a quintessential Taylor Swift song. It has all of the storytelling elements, references to an antique shop (which she loved going to in her spare time), a superior bridge and beautiful lyrics. This track is an homage to her grandparent’s marriage. If you haven’t seen the lyric video on YouTube yet, go watch it. It is absolutely worth checking out for the photographs. Fans are claiming Timeless as the new wedding song and honestly, that makes perfect sense.
6.) Castles Crumbling (feat. Hayley Williams)
In last place, we have Castles Crumbling, featuring Hayley Williams from Paramore. I’ve struggled to connect with this track. It’s not bad, just not a favourite of mine. For some reason, I expected it to go harder than it did. I was also hoping for some insane vocals from Hayley. She’s such a strong singer. This song is about Taylor’s experience feeling on top of the world coming off the Fearless Tour and suddenly falling from grace in the eyes of the public and her fans. It’s quite sad. I feel like lyrically, it belongs more on Reputation, especially with the ‘my castle crumbled overnight’ reference in Call It What You Want. I’m sure it will grow on me over time but at this stage, it is a skip. Don’t hate me!
Thank you so much for reading! How would you order the vault tracks? What did you think of Speak Now TV as a whole?
Peace & Love xoxo