Taylor Swift is at the dawn of a new musical era and it’s her most colourful and romantic one yet. After teasing fans with an upcoming announcement on social media this week, Swift revealed new album details during an Instagram live session on Thursday where she announced the title of her upcoming seventh studio album, Lover.
Set to be released on August 23, because August is the eighth month and 8+2+3=13, Swift’s favourite number (yas Easter egg kween!), TSwift delighted fans with a laundry list of details about what they can expect. The upcoming album, Swift’s first since 2017’s Reputation, will include 18 new tracks, making it the longest album in the Grammy winner’s discography. Lover will include the lead single “Me!,” which Swift debuted in April alongside Panic! At The Disco frontman Brandon Urie, and possibly a duet with Katy Perry although at this point we’re just speculating/wishing/putting it into the universe.
Showing off the whimsical cover art, which features Swift standing in front of cotton candy clouds with her blonde hair updated with blue tips and the singer sporting a Ziggy Stardust-inspired sparkly heart around her eye, Swift credits photographer and “artistic genius” Valheria Rocha with the snap, and shared that the Colombian-American artist is responsible for the album’s colourful and dreamy artwork.
Dropping hints about the new album (doesn’t the sparkly heart on her face look an awful lot like the sparkly icing she used for her friendship cookies with Katy Perry?) Swift told fans during the Instagram live session that Lover will be her most romantic album to date.
“This album in tone, it’s very romantic—and not just thematically, like it’s all love songs,” Swift said. “I think the idea of something being romantic, it doesn’t have to be a happy song. You can find romance in loneliness or sadness or going through a conflict or dealing with things in your life … It looks at things with a very romantic gaze.” We’re thinking “Love Story” meets “Delicate” meets “Wildest Dreams” meets “All Too Well.”
In addition to the album details, Swift also released “You Need To Calm Down,” which will act as Lover’s second single. The instant earworm follows the same musical vein as “Me!,” with the playful and uplifting track wrapping its more serious subject matter, specifically the rights of LGBTQ people, in a radio-friendly and accessible pop melody. On Thursday, Swift confirmed that the official video will debut on Good Morning America on June 17 and it “is very worth the wait. There’s a lot going on in the video; I wanted that to be a separate discovery,” she shared during the Instagram live.
Always one for hints, Swift included the single artwork on her Instagram page, which shows the singer’s back covered in butterfly tattoos and a large snake (!) with her blonde hair in an updo while she looks out over a brightly coloured mobile home park.
Debuting the song during Pride Month, Swift sings, “Sunshine on the street at the parade/But you would rather be in the dark ages/Making that sign/Must have taken all night,” before asking the question, “Why are you mad when you could be GLAAD?” The Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation (GLAAD) responded to Swift’s new single, tweeting their appreciation for her inclusive, empowering and catchy tune.
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🌈HAPPY PRIDE MONTH!!!🌈 While we have so much to celebrate, we also have a great distance to go before everyone in this country is truly treated equally. In excellent recent news, the House has passed the Equality Act, which would protect LGBTQ people from discrimination in their places of work, homes, schools, and other public accommodations. The next step is that the bill will go before the Senate. I’ve decided to kick off Pride Month by writing a letter to one of my senators to explain how strongly I feel that the Equality Act should be passed. I urge you to write to your senators too. I’ll be looking for your letters by searching the hashtag #lettertomysenator. While there’s no information yet as to when the Equality Act will go before the Senate for a vote, we do know this: Politicians need votes to stay in office. Votes come from the people. Pressure from massive amounts of people is a major way to push politicians towards positive change. That’s why I’ve created a petition at change.org to urge the Senate to support the Equality Act. Our country’s lack of protection for its own citizens ensures that LGBTQ people must live in fear that their lives could be turned upside down by an employer or landlord who is homophobic or transphobic. The fact that, legally, some people are completely at the mercy of the hatred and bigotry of others is disgusting and unacceptable. Let’s show our pride by demanding that, on a national level, our laws truly treat all of our citizens equally. 🌈🌈🌈🌈🌈🌈🌈🌈🌈🌈🌈🌈🌈 Click the link in my bio to sign the petition for Senate support of the Equality Act.
Swift has been vocal about her support of GLAAD this month, kicking off Pride with a donation to the organization and sharing a letter she wrote to U.S. Senator Lamar Alexander requesting that he show his support for the Equality Act, which would protect LGBTQ Americans against discrimination in housing, the workplace and other public areas. Swift continued her efforts during her performance at California’s Wango Tango Festival asking fans to sign a petition urging the Senate to support the Equality Act, which now has almost 180,000 signatures.