On Thursday (23 July), Swift announced that her new album would be dropping at midnight the following day, less than a year since her last studio album Lover premiered.
A departure from her last, pop-driven album, Folklore saw Swift collaborate with The National’s Aaron Dessner, who told Pitchfork that the album was kept tightly under wraps until the very last minute to prevent any information from leaking.
“There was no outside influence at all,” Dessner said. “In fact, nobody knew, including her label, until hours before it was launched. For someone who’s been in this glaring spotlight for 15 years, it’s really liberating to have some privacy and work on her own terms. She deserves that.”
He continued: “At times, if I wanted friends to play on the record, it was a little difficult because you can’t send a file with her vocals. But everyone was cool.
“At the end, I reached out to some wizards just to add bits, and that was nice. It was kind of fun: ‘What? Why can’t you tell me, Aaron?’ Then they start guessing. Everyone made a game out of it.”
As well as Dessner, Swift collaborated with Bon Iver and songwriter Jack Antonoff on the record.
The Independent’s Roisin O’Connor gave Folklore a four-star review, writing: “This shimmering album is exquisite, piano-based poetry.”
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