Midnights

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Midnights
Digital artwork of "Midnights", a white background with a square image of Taylor Swift holding a lighter. The track list is displayed on the bottom left of the image.
Standard cover
Studio album by
ReleasedOctober 21, 2022 (2022-10-21)
Studio
Genre
Length44:02
LabelRepublic
Producer
Taylor Swift chronology
Red (Taylor's Version)
(2021)
Midnights
(2022)
Speak Now (Taylor's Version)
(2023)
Singles from Midnights
  1. "Anti-Hero"
    Released: October 21, 2022
  2. "Lavender Haze"
    Released: November 29, 2022
  3. "Karma"
    Released: May 1, 2023

Midnights is the tenth studio album by the American singer-songwriter Taylor Swift, released on October 21, 2022, by Republic Records. Swift conceived it as a concept album about nocturnal ruminations inspired by her sleepless nights. The autobiographical songwriting explores broad emotions such as regrets, self-criticism, fantasies, heartbreak, and infatuation, using confessional yet cryptic lyrics that allude to her personal life and public image.

Swift and Jack Antonoff produced the standard edition of Midnights, which features a subdued electronic soundscape consisting of mid-tempo rhythms, retro synthesizers, sparse drum machine beats, and digitally manipulated vocals. Music critics categorize the album into pop styles of synth-pop, electropop, dream pop, and bedroom pop. The songs infuse electronica, hip hop, R&B, and alternative elements. Sounwave, Jahaan Sweet, and Keanu Beats shared credits on two tracks, and Aaron Dessner produced additional songs for an extended 3am Edition that was surprise-released three hours after the standard edition.

Swift announced Midnights at the 2022 MTV Video Music Awards and unveiled the standard track list via the video-sharing platform TikTok. In the United States, Midnights was Swift's 11th consecutive number-one album on the Billboard 200 and her fifth to sell over one million first-week copies; it was the best-selling album of 2022. Its songs, led by the lead single "Anti-Hero", made Swift the first artist to monopolize the top 10 of the Billboard Hot 100. Midnights topped the charts of many other territories across Europe, Asia-Pacific, and the Americas; it received multi-platinum certifications in Australia, Canada, New Zealand, Poland, the United Kingdom, and the United States.

Music critics regarded Midnights as an amalgamation of Swift's past albums; they praised her songwriting for its engaging narratives and musical constructions. Most complimented the production as restrained and tasteful, although some found it derivative. Many publications featured Midnights on their lists of the best albums of 2022 and dubbed the album's critical and commercial successes a testament to Swift's enduring popularity. The album won Album of the Year and Best Pop Vocal Album at the 66th Annual Grammy Awards in 2024, making Swift the first artist to win the former category four times. To support Midnights along with her other albums, Swift embarked on the Eras Tour (2023–2024).

Background[edit]

Swift's career has been characterized by artistic reinventions; she first emerged as a Nashville-based country musician in the 2000s and transformed into a mainstream pop star in the 2010s.[1] While self-quarantining during the COVID-19 pandemic, Swift released two indie folk albums, Folklore and Evermore, in 2020.[2][3] On Folklore and Evermore, Swift collaborated with the indie artists the National and Bon Iver.[4] Her songwriting incorporated fictitious narratives and characters that dwell on nostalgia and escapism, which deviated from her previous autobiographical songs.[4] The albums shifted Swift's status from a mainstream pop star to an "alternative"-leaning musician and brought her widespread critical acclaim and recognition as a songwriter.[5]

In November 2020, Swift began re-recording her first six studio albums.[6] The decision followed a 2019 public dispute between her and the music executive Scooter Braun, who acquired Swift's former record label Big Machine and the masters of Swift's albums released by the label.[7][8] By re-recording the albums, Swift had full ownership of the new masters, which enabled her to control the licensing of her songs for commercial use and therefore substituted the Big Machine-owned masters.[9] In 2021, Swift released her first two re-recorded albums, Fearless (Taylor's Version) and Red (Taylor's Version), which both garnered more album-equivalent units than their original counterparts, Fearless and Red, in the same time period.[10] Critics and academics deemed Swift's re-recordings a key event contributing to a wider industry discourse on artists' rights and artist–label relationships.[11]

Amidst the re-recording projects, Swift sparked speculation on new music when she appeared as a guest at Haim's One More Haim Tour concert in London in July 2022; it was her first concert performance since 2019.[2][12] At the 2022 MTV Video Music Awards on August 28, Swift won three awards, including Video of the Year for All Too Well: The Short Film, which accompanies the track "All Too Well (10 Minute Version)" from Red (Taylor's Version).[13] In her acceptance speech for Video of the Year, she announced a new studio album, slated for release on October 21;[14] the announcement attracted media attention and increased the show's viewership ratings.[15] After the show, Swift revealed the album title Midnights on her social media.[14] On music streaming platforms, Midnights was labeled "pop", which attracted media speculation on its sound after the "alternative"-labeled Folklore and Evermore.[2]

Concept and writing[edit]

Jack Antonoff performing
Jack Antonoff co-wrote 11 and co-produced all 13 tracks with Swift on the standard edition.
Aaron Dessner playing an acoustic guitar
Aaron Dessner worked on four tracks for the 3 a.m. Edition.

Swift was inspired to create Midnights as a concept album about her "13 sleepless nights" by five major themes: self-hatred, revenge fantasies, "wondering what might have been", falling in love, and "falling apart".[3][16] She wrote 11 out of the 13 tracks on the standard edition with Jack Antonoff, who had produced all of Swift's albums starting with 1989 in 2014.[17][18] She wrote "Vigilante Shit" alone and "Sweet Nothing" with her then-partner, the English actor Joe Alwyn, who is credited under the pseudonym William Bowery.[19] Co-writers include the actress Zoë Kravitz ("Lavender Haze") and the hip-hop producers Sam Dew ("Lavender Haze"), Jahaan Sweet ("Lavender Haze", "Karma"), Sounwave ("Lavender Haze", "Karma"), and Keanu Beats ("Karma").[19] The singer-songwriter Lana Del Rey was featured as a guest vocalist and shared writing credits on "Snow on the Beach".[19] Swift wrote seven other tracks for an extended 3am Edition, which she described as a byproduct of her creative process.[20] She wrote four with Antonoff and three with the National's Aaron Dessner, who collaborated with her on Folklore and Evermore.[21] Dew and Sounwave also shared writing credits on the 3am track "Glitch".[20]

Midnight had recurred as a lyrical motif throughout Swift's songs.[22] The A.V. Club's Mary Kate Carr wrote that the midnight imagery had different connotations: youthful, vulnerable, sexy, or haunting.[a] Carr remarked that Midnights was an album built on that singular motif.[16] Its songs explore Swift's thoughts that occur during the afterhours;[23] they are backward-looking contemplations on her life and mark a return to the autobiographical songwriting that had defined her artistry before the fictitious characters and narratives on Folklore and Evermore.[24][25] Music critics identified a wide range of topics: self-critique, self-confidence, ruminations on past decisions, hopes, fears, regrets, fantasies, and infatuation.[b] According to some, the broad lyrical themes make Midnights a loose concept album rather than a unified one.[24][30] For Alan Light of Esquire, although the concept-album designation was questionable, the songs altogether constructed a cohesive record.[3] Rick Quinn from PopMatters Rick Quinn opined that the lyrical sentiments, akin to "a restless mind", represented Swift's reflection on her youth and adolescence and her journey to fully realize herself as an adult.[27] Swift's songwriting on Midnights is confessional, but it also contains cryptic lyrical details that allude to her personal life and public image.[31][32]

Themes[edit]

Midnights is primarily about love and the reflections that ensue.[24][33] "Maroon" is about the haunting memories of a long-gone romance,[24] while "Snow on the Beach" describes two people falling in love with each other at the same time.[34] Swift ruminates over a broken relationship and how things could have turned out differently in "Question...?"[35] and ponders the anxiety of falling in love again in "Labyrinth".[36]

Many songs address Swift's fame and how it intertwines with her personal life.[37][38] According to The New York Times' Lindsay Zoladz, these songs find Swift no longer seeing marriage as ideal, as depicted by her 2008 single "Love Story", and instead convey her ambivalent viewpoints on romance and adulthood.[39] "Lavender Haze" details the online tabloid scrutiny that she received for her relationship.[40] In "Anti-Hero", she details her insecurities and how her celebrity status hinders her from having meaningful relationships.[27][41] "You're on Your Own, Kid" is an introspection on Swift's rise to fame and how alienating it was.[23][42] In "Midnight Rain", Swift reflects on a forgone love back in her hometown and how she chose fame over a domestic life.[28][39] "Labyrinth" hints at the pressure she faces in the spotlight,[3] a sentiment that is also addressed in "Sweet Nothing", which describes a calming romantic relationship amidst the chaos of the outer world.[43] In the standard edition's closer, "Mastermind", Swift admits to her lover that she is the one strategizing every move of their relationship and makes fun of her image as a calculating woman.[33][44]

The songs "Vigilante Shit" and "Karma" have lyrics that conjecture revenge fantasies against one's rivals.[33][45] In the former, Swift's character sides with the ex-lover of her nemesis in a revenge plot.[36][46] The latter has comical lyrics about how Swift benefits from karma: her righteous actions reward her with good outcomes in life, and she need not worry about sabotaging her rivals.[46] Self-assurance is the theme of "Bejeweled", which depicts finding one's self-worth after a breakup.[26][47]

The 3am Edition tracks have varied themes; The Atlantic's Shirley Li found them to be more "cathartic" and metaphorical than the standard tracks.[48] "The Great War" references World War I as an analogy of romantic heartbreak,[49] while "Would've, Could've, Should've" uses religious imagery to describe an adult woman's reflection on her traumatic loss of innocence during her adolescence.[27][48] The vague, mournful lyrics of "Bigger Than the Whole Sky" are about losing something so soon without mentioning what exactly was lost.[50] "Glitch" is about how an original plan of staying friends with somebody strays away to become a romance,[51] and "Paris" sees Swift fantasizing about a romance in Paris while in her bedroom.[52] In "High Infidelity", Swift's character takes responsibility for a failed relationship with no regrets.[51] The 3am closing track, "Dear Reader", sees Swift beseeching her audience not to look up to her as a "guiding light".[24][48]

Production[edit]

Swift recorded much of Midnights at Antonoff's home studio, Rough Customer, in Brooklyn and Electric Lady Studios in Greenwich Village, New York City.[53] The two produced all tracks for the standard edition.[53] Sounwave co-produced "Lavender Haze" and "Karma"; Jahaan Sweet also co-produced the former, and Keanu Beats the latter.[46][54] Tracks co-produced with Sounwave were additionally recorded at Henson Recording Studios in Los Angeles.[55] To create the beat for "Lavender Haze", Sounwave and Antonoff added effects to a loop created by Sweet. They then pitched the track to Swift, who helped create the final production.[56] "Karma" originated from a sample created in 2019 by Beats at his home in Australia.[57] Beats sent the sample to Sounwave,[57] who then sent it to Antonoff and Swift; the whole production was completed after one day.[56]

Music[edit]

Midnights departs from the indie folk sound of its two immediate successors, Folklore and Evermore, and incorporates a prominent electronic production.[3][46] The melodies are electronically generated by retro synthesizers, including analog synthesizers that date back to the 1960s or 1970s—most prominently the Moog, Mellotron, and Juno 6,[23][46] drum machines that create sparse beats,[28][58][59] and synthesized and electronically manipulated vocals.[23][60] Two tracks where programming is less prominent are "You're on Your Own, Kid", which is driven by electric guitar strums, and "Sweet Nothing", by an electric piano and horns.[46] Swift's words, vocals, and Antonoff's production emphasize rhythms.[27][61] The production is minimalist;[62][63] Marc Hirsh from Entertainment Weekly described it as "maximalist minimalism" with a "characteristically muted beat".[64] The songs are predominantly mid-tempo[3][59] and incorporate subdued tones of instruments such as saxophone, clarinet, flutes, and keyboards, played by members of the pop rock band Bleachers, of which Antonoff is the frontman.[65]

Reviews in contemporary publications mostly categorize Midnights as synth-pop[c] and electropop.[d] Music critics deemed the album a throwback to the pop sounds of Swift's 1989, Reputation, and Lover, but its atmospheric production makes it relatively subdued and understated.[e] NPR's Ann Powers wrote that the sound "might be called ahistorical chillout music", with a "soft and mutable glow" that stimulated an intimate and isolated atmosphere.[23] Rob Sheffield of Rolling Stone said Midnights was "nocturnal moody electro dream pop",[72] Andy Von Pip from Under the Radar called the sound "ambient electronic pop",[62] and Ellen Johnson from Paste deemed the album an incorporation of "poptronica".[69] Chris Willman of Variety Chris Willman considered the Midnights tracks to resemble the "quieter, mid-tempo-and-under moments" of Swift's pop albums,[46] and Quinn Moreland of Pitchfork wrote that Midnights built on the "softly stuttering" Reputation tracks "Delicate" and "Dress".[28] Time's Shannon Carlin and The Ringer's Rob Harvilla deemed it a foray into bedroom pop.[42][73]

Midnights incorporates influences of other genres such as R&B,[24][47][71] electronica,[74] and hip hop,[23][74] showcased through the synthesizers and vocal manipulations[24]—Swift's voice is multitracked[23][25] and, on "Midnight Rain" and "Labyrinth", pitched down to a low register that critics found masculine[23][39] or androgynous.[46][66] Powers wrote that Swift's vocals retained a country-influenced "relaxed" timbre but also interpolated hip-hop cadences that resulted in conversational sing-talking.[23] Elements of electronica are demonstrated on "Snow on the Beach" and "Bejeweled",[69][75] electro hip hop on "Lavender Haze", "Midnight Rain", and "Vigilante Shit",[29] and R&B on "Lavender Haze", "Maroon", "Midnight Rain", "The Great War", and "Glitch".[47] "Midnight Rain" and "Labyrinth" also incorporate dubstep-influenced bass and house-and-trap-inspired beats.[66]

In Vulture, Craig Jenkins dubbed Midnights a "genre reset" attempting to hybridize synth-pop and R&B.[47] Two other Vulture critics—the journalist Charlie Harding and the musicologist Nate Sloan—said the album evoked a variety of dance and club genres, such as techno, UK garage, and jungle. This is demonstrated by the Reese bass, a low-pitched synth-bass sound that is incorporated into tracks such as "Lavender Haze", "Anti-Hero", "Question...?", and "Karma". Harding said the Reese bass gave the album a "dark" and "subterranean" feel.[76] Elise Ryan from the Associated Press and Lucy Harbron from Gigwise considered Midnights an experimental album.[31][77] Ryan deemed it a move toward indie pop,[31] and Andrew Unterberger from Billboard described it as "alt-leaning synth-pop".[78] Ilana Kaplam of the Alternative Press and Stephen Thomas Erlewine of AllMusic said that in addition to the electronic sound, Midnights incorporated alternative elements and contemplative lyricism that evoked Folklore and Evermore.[35][67]

Artwork and aesthetics[edit]

The standard edition's cover artwork contains a square photo of Swift in blue eye shadow, black eye liner, and red lipstick, holding the flickering flame of a lighter close to her face.[79] The photo is at the bottom right corner, occupying half of the cover, and bordered on the top and left sides by off-white negative space.[80] The tracklist is on the bottom left, and the title Midnights is written in a blue gradient, printed on top of Swift's photo.[79] Publications found the track-list presentation to evoke the 1970s vinyl album jackets.[81][82] The fashion critic Jess Cartner-Morley found the cover to evoke the artwork of the English band Roxy Music's 1974 album Country Life and the French artist Guy Bourdin's photographs for Vogue France,[2] and Alex Bilmes of Esquire found Swift reminiscent of the English model Jean Shrimpton in the 1970s.[36] Some publications commented that the cover artwork was minimalist[79][80] and aligned it with the indie sleaze trend.[f] After Swift unveiled the cover on her social media, it created a trend and was parodied by many brands, celebrities, and athletic teams.[85][86]

Other promotional visuals for Midnights also have 1970s-inspired aesthetics.[87][88] The photographs and videos that Swift posted onto social media featured a clock face, family-room furniture with retro upholstery, and a rust velvet curtain in the background.[46][89][90] Her wardrobe incorporated embellishments that Vogue identified as "disco sequins" and "corduroy flare".[91] The covers for three other physical editions all feature 1970s memorabilia: a retro piano, a push-button telephone, and a wood-paneled wall.[79][82] Their reverse sides each portray a quarter sector of a dial and, when assembled together and combined with a clock mechanism sold separately, form a functioning clock.[92] The music videos for "Anti-Hero", "Bejeweled", and "Lavender Haze" all feature Swift in 1970s fashion: houndstooth polo sweaters, ribbed knit trousers, and sequined bodysuits.[g] Light said the "head-faking" 1970s visuals were contrary to the "contemporary" electropop sound of Midnights,[3] and Willman wrote that the 1970s sensibilities were at least complemented by the music's use of analog synthesizers.[46]

Release and promotion[edit]

Swift extensively used social media to promote Midnights.[1][14] After the announcement at the MTV Video Music Awards, Swift's website and the canvases of her songs on Spotify were updated with images of a clock.[96] Using the video-sharing platform TikTok, from September 21 to October 7, 2022, she released a 13-episode video series called Midnights Mayhem with Me, where she announced the title of each track in a randomized order per episode.[97] In each episode, Swift rolled a lottery cage containing 13 ping pong balls numbered from 1 to 13, each representing a track of the album, and when a ball dropped out, she disclosed the title of the corresponding track through a telephone.[98][99] On October 17, Swift posted on her social media an itinerary titled Midnights Manifest, which included promotional events she had planned.[100] Swift partnered with Spotify to display some lyrics from Midnights on billboards in five cities: New York, London, São Paulo, Nashville, and Mexico City.[101] Another partnership with Apple Fitness+ included three exercise programs designed around Swift's music, featuring tracks from Midnights.[102]

Although Swift extensively promoted Midnights and announced multiple release pre-orders, she did not conduct press interviews or preview music prior to the album's release.[2] Republic Records released Midnights on October 21, 2022.[53] The standard edition was made available for streaming, download, cassette, four CD variants, and four vinyl LP variants.[103] Target stores exclusively sold a Lavender Edition on CD and vinyl LP, and Capital One distributed a box set that contained the CD and a Swift-branded T-shirt.[104] The 3am Edition was surprise-released onto streaming and digital services three hours after the standard edition.[104] From October 21 to 26, iHeartRadio aired a program called iHeartRadio Brings You Midnights with Taylor, which featured tracks from the album and stories behind the songs told by Swift herself.[105] Swift appeared, but did not perform, on the talk shows The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon on October 24[106] and The Graham Norton Show on October 28.[107]

refer to caption
Swift performing on the Eras Tour at SoFi Stadium in August 2023

The lead single, "Anti-Hero", was released on October 21, 2022.[108] In the United States, it became the best-selling song of 2022[109] and made Swift the first artist to have a number-one song on the Radio Songs chart in the 2000s, 2010s, and 2020s decades.[110] "Bejeweled" and "Question...?" were released for limited-time digital download exclusively through Swift's website on October 25.[111] Republic Records released "Lavender Haze" to US radio as the second single on November 29, 2022,[112][113] and "Karma" as the third on May 1, 2023.[114][115] A remix of "Karma" featuring the rapper Ice Spice was released on May 26, 2023.[116]

Media publications commented on the promotion for Midnights. Unterberger and Slate's Chris Molanphy described it as a middle ground between a traditional album rollout and the surprise-release strategy of Folklore and Evermore.[117][118] Molanphy argued that Midnights employed an optimal promotion for every consumption metric: the multiple CD and LP offers would boost physical sales, the limited-time download tracks would increase digital sales, and the surprise 3am Edition release would prompt higher streams.[118] The fact that there were no pre-release singles prompted speculation on the album's sound and content.[2][117] El País described it as an "art of suspense."[119] In The Washington Post, Emily Yahr wrote that the TikTok tracklist reveal prompted Swift's fans to interpret possible Easter eggs, which resulted in a "frenzy" and boosted the anticipation for the album.[120]

To support Midnights and her other albums, Swift embarked on the Eras Tour, a concert tour that she described as "a journey through the musical eras of [her] career".[121] Running from March 2023 to December 2024, the tour will have spanned 151 dates and visited five continents when it concludes.[122][123] Ticketmaster cancelled its US public on-sale due to insufficient inventory, which led to a debacle highly debated in the press.[124] After the first 60 shows in 2023, the Eras Tour grossed over $1 billion, becoming the first tour to do so and the highest-grossing concert tour in history.[125] While Swift was on tour, a Til Dawn Edition of Midnights containing the bonus track "Hits Different" was released to digital platforms, and a Late Night Edition containing the bonus track "You're Losing Me" was sold as concert-exclusive merchandise starting from the East Rutherford show on May 26, 2023.[126]

Commercial performance[edit]

Midnights was a commercial success across all consumption metrics: streaming, digital sales, and physical sales.[78][127] It broke various records on music streaming platforms.[128] On Spotify, Midnights broke records for the highest single-day streams and the highest single-week streams.[129][130] It also claimed the highest single-day streams for a pop album and an album released in Dolby Atmos on Apple Music, the highest single-week streams for an album on Amazon Music, and the highest single-day requests on Amazon Alexa.[131] All of its tracks entered the Billboard Global 200 simultaneously; it set the record for the most simultaneous top-10 entries (nine) and made Swift the first artist to occupy the entire top five.[132]

In the United States, Midnights sold 800,000 copies after one day of release[133] and one million copies after five days, becoming Swift's record-extending fifth album to sell one million first-week copies.[134] The album debuted atop the Billboard 200 with first-week units of 1.578 million, consisting of 1.14 million sales and 549.26 million streams—the highest streams for a pop album.[135] Swift had her record-extending 11th consecutive number-one album debut and tied with Barbra Streisand for the most number-one albums among women.[135] It was the best-selling album of 2022, the second-best-selling album of 2023, and the second-most-consumed album of both years.[136] Swift became the first artist to have a yearly best-seller six times since Luminate tracked US music sales in 1991.[109] Midnights spent six weeks atop the Billboard 200.[126] Its songs, led by "Anti-Hero", made Swift the first artist to occupy the entire top 10 of the Billboard Hot 100 the same week;[137] all 20 tracks from the 3am Edition charted in the top 45.[138] "Anti-Hero" and Midnights marked the fourth time Swift had a number-one album and song simultaneously, a first for any musician.[137] In November 2022, the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) certified the album double platinum for surpassing two million US units.[139]

Midnights debuted at number one on the album charts in at least 14 countries, including Belgium, Canada, Finland, France, Germany, Italy, Ireland, the Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, and Sweden.[131] In Germany, it was Swift's first number-one album and had the largest streaming week for a solo artist in 2022.[140] In China, it sold nearly 250,000 copies within one day and made Swift the best-selling foreign artist of 2022.[141] On the Australian charts, it became Swift's 10th consecutive number-one album and claimed the biggest streaming and vinyl sales weeks in history.[142] "Anti-Hero" and Midnights marked Swift's third time to have a "Chart Double" by topping both the Australian album chart and singles chart the same week.[143] The other eight tracks also charted in the top 10 of the singles chart and marked the most top-10 songs simultaneously (nine) by an artist.[144] In the United Kingdom, Midnights sold over 140,000 units in its first three days to become the fastest-selling album of 2022.[145] It debuted atop the UK Albums Chart with 204,000 units, helping Swift achieve the shortest duration (10 years) for a female act to accumulate nine UK number-one albums.[146] Midnights spent five weeks atop the UK Albums Chart.[147] It sold 80,000 vinyl copies in 2022, the highest annual figure for an album in the 21st century, propelling total UK vinyl sales past CD sales for the first time since 1987.[148]

According to Universal Music Group, the album crossed three million album-equivalent units in its first week and six million in two months.[149] Bloomberg News reported that the album generated $230 million in sales for Universal in 2022, accounting for 3% of their annual revenue—the highest from any artist.[150] The International Federation of the Phonographic Industry (IFPI) recognized Midnights as the second-most-consumed album of 2022; it ranked third in pure sales (first in vinyl sales) and fifth in streams.[151] They named Swift the Global Recording Artist of the Year, which made her the first act to win the accolade three times (after 2014 and 2019).[152] Midnights received platinum or higher certifications in many countries, including double-platinum certifications in Australia,[153] Canada,[154] Poland,[155] and the United Kingdom,[156] and a triple-platinum certification in New Zealand.[157]

Critical reception[edit]

Professional ratings
Aggregate scores
SourceRating
AnyDecentMusic?8.0/10[158]
Metacritic85/100[159]
Review scores
SourceRating
AllMusic[67]
American Songwriter[160]
Entertainment WeeklyB+[64]
The Daily Telegraph[161]
The Guardian[66]
The Independent[32]
NME[26]
Pitchfork7.0/10[28]
Rolling Stone[33]
The Times[60]

Upon release, Midnights was met with widespread acclaim.[162][163] On Metacritic, which assigns a normalized score out of 100 to ratings from mainstream publications, the album received a weighted mean score of 85 based on 28 reviews, indicating "universal acclaim".[159] The review aggregator site AnyDecentMusic? compiled 29 reviews and gave Midnights an average of 8.0 out of 10, based on their assessment of the critical consensus.[158]

Swift's songwriting was a subject of praise.[162] Alex Hopper in American Songwriter said Midnights displayed complex songwriting,[160] and Alexis Petridis in The Guardian found it to be "confident" and contain a "sure-footedness".[66] Ken Tucker of NPR complimented Swift's composition using rhymes "so tightly, so rigorously, that [...] you wonder if she did it on purpose to mess with your mind".[164] Some reviewers commented that her lyrics were more refined and inward. According to NME's Hannah Mylrea, Spin's Bobby Olivier, and The Daily Telegraph's Neil McCormick, the album featured Swift's intimate personal narratives that delved deep into her state of mind.[26][65][161] Hirsh commented that while the themes were a continuation of what Swift had explored, the album showcased a newfound maturity with "serene acceptance".[64] Mikael Wood of the Los Angeles Times admired the storytelling lyrics and argued that they blurred the distinction between "what's drawn directly from Swift's real life and what's not."[165] Hopper and Light considered the narrative-driven songwriting on Midnights an influence of Folklore and Evermore;[160] the latter complimented Swift's ability to address a "broad canvas" of emotions that highlighted her mature perspective.[3] For Clash's Matthew Neale, Midnights was a culmination of Swift's songcraft throughout past albums.[166]

Reactions to the production were somewhat polarized;[167] most were complimentary and deemed the sound tasteful.[163] In laudatory reviews, Sheffield,[72] Brittany Spanos from Rolling Stone,[33] and Bilmes dubbed Midnights an "instant classic"; the lattermost called it "the pop album of the year".[36] Ryan and Quinn said the album was a demonstration of masterful musical structures and experimentation;[27] the former wrote that Swift effortlessly combined her sharp lyricism with new musical elements.[31] Von Pip described the subdued production as elegant,[62] while Johnston and Petridis regarded the sound as nuanced and restrained compared to the mainstream pop sound.[69][66] McCormick dubbed the album a collection of "clever pop songs" but said it suggested Swift's uncertainty about whether to proceed with "intimate songcraft" or "a commercial juggernaut".[161]

Less enthusiastic reviews complained that Swift and Antonoff's collaboration led to conformity.[162][167] Jon Caramanica of The New York Times,[25] Chris Richards of The Washington Post,[168] and Paul Attard of Slant Magazine deemed Midnights uninventive and too familiar to Swift's past music.[45] Moreland, Erlewine, and The Line of Best Fit's Paul Bridgewater agreed, but they complimented the album as cohesive.[28][67][169] Powers appreciated some sonic experimentations that attempted to innovate Swift's first-person songwriting but felt that they sometimes had a "half-finished quality".[23] For Carl Wilson of Slate and Spencer Kornhaber of The Atlantic, Midnights at first came up as dull but revealed texture and substance after multiple plays;[24][167] Robert Christgau believed that this "textural" approach made it less tunefully defined than Swift's previous albums.[170] Helen Brown of The Independent wrote that the "subtle melodies" took time to "sink their claws in" and brought a rich listening experience with "feline vocal stealth and assured lyrical control".[32] Will Hodgkinson of The Times said that despite some "off-putting" vocal treatments, Midnights was an appealing "old-fashioned singer-songwriter album" with resonant songs.[60]

Rankings[edit]

Midnights appeared on publications' lists of the best albums of 2022. It was featured in the top five by Rolling Stone,[171] Billboard,[172] the Los Angeles Times,[173] People,[174] PopMatters,[175] and USA Today,[176] and the top 10 by Hot Press,[177] The Independent,[178] musicOMH,[179] and The Times.[180] Publications that featured Midnights in the top 50 of their lists include BrooklynVegan,[181] Clash,[182] Consequence,[183] Gaffa,[184] The Guardian, The Line of Best Fit,[185] NME, Paste,[186] Slant Magazine,[187] and Under the Radar.[188] It was also included in unranked lists by AllMusic,[189] British GQ,[190] the Alternative Press,[191] and Uproxx.[192] On individual critics' lists, Midnights was ranked first by Willman[193] and second by Sheffield.[194]

Select year-end rankings of Midnights
Publication List Rank Ref.
Billboard The 50 Best Albums of 2022 3 [172]
The Guardian The 50 Best Albums of 2022 17 [195]
Hot Press 50 Best Albums of 2022 6 [177]
The Independent The Best Albums of 2022 7 [178]
Los Angeles Times The 20 Best Albums of 2022 4 [173]
NME The Top 50 Albums of 2022 12 [196]
PopMatters The 80 Best Albums of 2022 5 [175]
Rolling Stone The 100 Best Albums of 2022 3 [171]
Slant Magazine The 50 Best Albums of 2022 18 [187]
The Times The 25 Best Albums of 2022 10 [180]

Industry awards[edit]

Taylor Swift in a black gown posing
Swift at the 2023 MTV Video Music Awards, where she won nine awards for Midnights and its songs.

In the United States, Midnights won Album of the Year at the 2022 People's Choice Awards,[197] Favorite Album at the 2023 Nickelodeon Kids' Choice Awards,[198] Pop Album of the Year at the 2023 iHeartRadio Music Awards,[199] and Album of the Year at the 2023 MTV Video Music Awards, where the Midnights songs and videos helped Swift win eight other awards, including Artist of the Year.[200] At the 66th Annual Grammy Awards in 2024, Midnights won Best Pop Vocal Album and Album of the Year. It was Swift's fourth win for Album of the Year, making her the artist with the most wins in history.[h] It also marked Swift's sixth nomination in that category and an all-time record for a female artist, tied with Barbra Streisand.[202]

Midnights won album awards at the NetEase Cloud Music Awards in China,[203] the RTHK International Pop Poll Awards in Hong Kong,[204] the Gold Disc Awards in Japan,[205] the Fonogram Awards in Hungary,[206] the Los 40 Music Awards in Spain,[207] and the Danish Music Awards in Denmark.[208] At the 2023 ARIA Music Awards in Australia, it helped Swift win Most Popular International Artist.[209] It earned nominations at the Capricho Awards in Brazil,[210] the Juno Awards in Canada,[211] and the Gaffa Awards in Denmark.[212]

Awards and nominations for Midnights
Organization Year[i] Category Result Ref.
People's Choice Awards 2022 The Album of 2022 Won [197]
Capricho Awards 2022 Album of the Year Nominated [210]
NetEase Cloud Music Awards 2023 Top English Album Won [203]
Nickelodeon Kids' Choice Awards 2023 Favorite Album Won [198]
Japan Gold Disc Awards 2023 Best 3 Western Albums Won [205]
Juno Awards 2023 International Album of the Year Nominated [211]
Gaffa Awards 2023 International Release of the Year Nominated [212]
iHeartRadio Music Awards 2023 Pop Album of the Year Won [199]
MTV Video Music Awards 2023 Album of the Year Won [200]
Los 40 Music Awards 2023 Best International Album Won [207]
ARIA Music Awards 2023 Most Popular International Artist Won [209]
Danish Music Awards 2023 International Album of the Year Won [208]
Billboard Music Awards 2023 Top Billboard 200 Album Nominated [213]
Fonogram – Hungarian Music Awards 2023 Foreign Pop-Rock Album of the Year Won [206]
RTHK International Pop Poll Awards 2023 Top English Album Won [204]
Grammy Awards 2024 Album of the Year Won [214]
Best Pop Vocal Album Won
Gold Derby Music Awards 2024 Album of the Year Won [215]
Best Pop Album Won

Impact[edit]

Midnights received extensive press attention before and after its release. The Guardian's Laura Snapes commented that the album was "likely to hang around longer" than other "superstar releases" by Swift's contemporaries because of her popularity on streaming services and the positive public image she had curated since her 2017 album Reputation.[2] In Fortune, Ashley Lutz argued that Swift's marketing strategy for Midnights proved she was a "business and marketing genius" akin to the Marvel Cinematic Universe superhero franchise.[1] For Snapes and Billboard's Katie Atkinson, Midnights came at a point when the public became invested in Swift's music after the critical success and reevaluation she received with the 2020 albums Folklore and Evermore and the 2021 re-recordings of Fearless and Red.[2][216]

Publications said the album's commercial success attested to Swift's longevity in the music industry. According to Billboard, it was the only album in 2022 that succeeded "evenly" across every consumption metric, namely streaming, album sales, and song downloads.[109] Five Billboard journalists collectively agreed that Swift, upon Midnights' release, was "the biggest pop star in the world right now",[216] and Yahr deemed 2022 a year of "all-Taylor all the time".[217] Molanphy argued that by employing savvy business tactics that tackled the constantly evolving chart rules, she broke previously "unthinkable" records by the likes of the Beatles and Drake, which was "mind-blowing" for a musician in the "17th year" of her career.[118] For The Guardian economics journalist Greg Jericho, it was an "amazing" feat that Swift remained culturally relevant "18 years into a recording career", a mark that surpassed the peak popularity of such musicians as the Rolling Stones, David Bowie, Bob Dylan, Bruce Springsteen, and U2.[130][j]

Unterberger said the physical sales of Midnights were "not seen in decades",[218] and Anna Nicolaou in the Financial Times said they were unseen since the "1990s boy bands" era, labeling Swift "the last pop superstar".[219] The music publisher Matt Pincus called Swift "basically an intellectual property franchise [... like] a DC movie".[219] Noting a 2021 article from The New York Times that asked "if Adele couldn't sell more than a million albums in a single week, could any artist?" after her album 30 missed the mark, Rolling Stone's Ethan Millman responded that Swift "has once again moved the goalposts regarding what the music industry can see as possible from a major pop star."[220] Swift shared on The Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon that she was astounded by the success: "I'm feeling very overwhelmed by the fans love for the record. I'm 32, so we're considered geriatric pop stars."[221]

Billboard commented in November 2022 that although the commercial success of Midnights was undisputable, "the legacy of the album within [Swift's] catalog [...] remains to be seen."[216] Molanphy observed that when the initial reviews were out, "few seem to think Midnights is Swift's very best album" and "nobody seems to agree on what [its] best or worst songs are."[118] Within one year of its release, on the rankings of Swift's 10 studio albums, Midnights appeared fifth on NME[222] and Entertainment Weekly[29] and sixth on Paste,[223] Spin,[224] and Slant Magazine.[225]

Track listing[edit]

Credits are adapted from the liner notes of Midnights.

Midnightsstandard edition
No.TitleWriter(s)Producer(s)Length
1."Lavender Haze"
3:22
2."Maroon"
  • Swift
  • Antonoff
  • Swift
  • Antonoff
3:38
3."Anti-Hero"
  • Swift
  • Antonoff
  • Swift
  • Antonoff
3:20
4."Snow on the Beach" (featuring Lana Del Rey)
  • Swift
  • Del Rey
  • Antonoff
  • Swift
  • Antonoff
4:16
5."You're on Your Own, Kid"
  • Swift
  • Antonoff
  • Swift
  • Antonoff
3:14
6."Midnight Rain"
  • Swift
  • Antonoff
  • Swift
  • Antonoff
2:54
7."Question...?"
  • Swift
  • Antonoff
  • Swift
  • Antonoff
3:30
8."Vigilante Shit"Swift
  • Swift
  • Antonoff
2:44
9."Bejeweled"
  • Swift
  • Antonoff
  • Swift
  • Antonoff
3:14
10."Labyrinth"
  • Swift
  • Antonoff
  • Swift
  • Antonoff
4:07
11."Karma"
  • Swift
  • Antonoff
  • Spears
  • Sweet
  • Keanu Torres
  • Swift
  • Antonoff
  • Sounwave
  • Keanu Beats
  • Sweet[b]
3:24
12."Sweet Nothing"
  • Swift
  • Antonoff
3:08
13."Mastermind"
  • Swift
  • Antonoff
  • Swift
  • Antonoff
3:11
Total length:44:02
Midnights – Lavender Edition CD
No.TitleWriter(s)Producer(s)Length
14."Hits Different"
  • Swift
  • Antonoff
  • Dessner
3:54
15."You're on Your Own, Kid" (Strings remix)
  • Swift
  • Antonoff
  • Swift
  • Antonoff
3:20
16."Sweet Nothing" (Piano remix)
  • Swift
  • Bowery
  • Swift
  • Antonoff
3:28
Total length:54:50
Midnights – 3am Edition
No.TitleWriter(s)Producer(s)Length
14."The Great War"
  • Swift
  • Dessner
  • Swift
  • Dessner
4:00
15."Bigger Than the Whole Sky"Swift
  • Swift
  • Antonoff
3:38
16."Paris"
  • Swift
  • Antonoff
  • Swift
  • Antonoff
3:16
17."High Infidelity"
  • Swift
  • Dessner
  • Swift
  • Dessner
3:51
18."Glitch"
  • Swift
  • Antonoff
  • Spears
  • Dew
  • Swift
  • Antonoff
  • Sounwave
2:28
19."Would've, Could've, Should've"
  • Swift
  • Dessner
  • Swift
  • Dessner
4:20
20."Dear Reader"
  • Swift
  • Antonoff
  • Swift
  • Antonoff
3:45
Total length:69:20
Midnights – Til Dawn Edition
No.TitleWriter(s)Producer(s)Length
21."Hits Different"
  • Swift
  • Antonoff
  • Dessner
  • Swift
  • Antonoff
  • Dessner
3:54
22."Snow on the Beach" (featuring More Lana Del Rey)
  • Swift
  • Del Rey
  • Antonoff
  • Swift
  • Antonoff
3:50
23."Karma" (featuring Ice Spice)
  • Swift
  • Antonoff
  • Isis Gaston
  • Ephrem Lopez
  • Spears
  • Sweet
  • Keanu Torres
  • Swift
  • Antonoff
  • Sounwave
  • Keanu Beats
  • Sweet[b]
3:22
Total length:81:26
Midnights – Late Night Edition
No.TitleWriter(s)Producer(s)Length
14."The Great War"
  • Swift
  • Dessner
  • Swift
  • Dessner
4:00
15."Bigger Than the Whole Sky"Swift
  • Swift
  • Antonoff
3:38
16."High Infidelity"
  • Swift
  • Dessner
  • Swift
  • Dessner
3:51
17."Would've, Could've, Should've"
  • Swift
  • Dessner
  • Swift
  • Dessner
4:20
18."Dear Reader"
  • Swift
  • Antonoff
  • Swift
  • Antonoff
3:45
19."You're Losing Me" (From the Vault)
  • Swift
  • Antonoff
  • Swift
  • Antonoff
4:38
20."Snow on the Beach" (featuring More Lana Del Rey)
  • Swift
  • Del Rey
  • Antonoff
  • Swift
  • Antonoff
3:50
21."Karma" (featuring Ice Spice)
  • Swift
  • Antonoff
  • Isis Gaston
  • Ephrem Lopez
  • Spears
  • Sweet
  • Keanu Torres
  • Swift
  • Antonoff
  • Sounwave
  • Keanu Beats
  • Sweet[b]
3:22
Total length:77:06

Notes

  • ^[a] signifies an additional producer
  • ^[b] signifies a co-producer

Personnel[edit]

Musicians

  • Taylor Swift – vocals
  • Jack Antonoff – percussion, programming, synthesizer (all tracks); background vocals (1, 3–5, 7, 9, 10, 13), drums (1, 3, 4, 6, 11–13), Mellotron (1, 3–5, 7), Wurlitzer organ (1, 3, 8), bass (2–5, 9, 15, 18, 20), electric guitar (2, 4, 5, 10, 12, 13, 15, 17, 18, 20), piano (2, 12, 15, 16, 20), acoustic guitar (3, 4, 5, 9, 15), crowd noises (7), slide guitar (15)
  • Aaron Dessner – percussion (14, 17), keyboards (14, 17), synth bass (14), piano (14, 17), electric guitar (14, 19), synthesizer (17, 19), acoustic guitar (17), bass guitar (19), harmonica (19)
  • Sam Dew – background vocals (1, 18)
  • Zoë Kravitz – background vocals (1, 18)
  • Jahaan Sweet – synth pads (1, 11); bass, flute, synthesizer (1); keyboards (11),
  • Sounwave – programming (1, 11)
  • Dominic Rivinius – snare drum (1), drums (7–8)
  • Evan Smith – saxophone (2, 12, 13); clarinet, flute, organ (2, 12); synthesizer (4, 5, 7–9, 13, 16), percussion (16)
  • Bobby Hawk – violin (3, 4, 13)
  • Dylan O'Brien – drums (4), crowd noises (7)
  • Lana Del Rey – vocals (4)
  • Rachel Antonoff – crowd noises (7)
  • Austin Swift – crowd noises (7)
  • Sean Hutchinson – drums (5, 7), percussion (5)
  • Mikey Freedom Hart – keyboards (9); programming (12–13), synthesizer (12–13, 16), theremin (16), organ (16)
  • Keanu Beats – synthesizer (11)
  • Michael Riddleberger – drums (13)
  • Zem Audu – saxophone (12–13)
  • Kyle Resnick – trumpet (14)
  • Yuki Numata Resnick – violin
  • Benjamin Lanz – drums, trombone (17)
  • James Krivchenia – drums (17)
  • Bryce Dessner – electric guitar (19)
  • Bryan Devendorf – drums (19)
  • James McAlister – drums (19), synthesizer (19)
  • Thomas Bartlett – keyboards (19), synthesizer (19)

Technical

  • Jack Antonoff – engineering
  • Laura Sisk – engineering
  • Şerban Gheneamixing
  • Bryce Bordone – mixing assistance
  • Randy Merrillmastering
  • Jahaan Sweet – engineering (1, 11)
  • Ken Lewis – engineering (1, 7, 8)
  • Evan Smith – engineering (2, 4, 5, 7–9, 12, 13)
  • Jon Gautier – engineering (3, 13)
  • Dave Gross – engineering (4)
  • Sean Hutchinson – engineering (5, 7)
  • David Hart – engineering (9, 13)
  • Sounwave – engineering (11)
  • Keanu Beats – engineering (11)
  • Michael Riddleberger – engineering (13)
  • Zem Audu – engineering (13)
  • John Rooney – engineering assistance
  • Jon Sher – engineering assistance
  • Megan Searl – engineering assistance
  • Jonathan Garcia – engineering assistance (1, 7, 8)
  • Mark Aguilar – engineering assistance (1, 11)
  • Jacob Spitzer – engineering assistance (4)
  • Laurene Marquez – additional engineer
  • James McAlister – drums programming (14, 17, 19)
  • Jonathan Low – mixer, engineering (17, 19)
  • Bella Blasko – engineering (14, 17, 19)
  • Justin Vernon – additional engineer (19)
  • Thomas Bartlett – additional engineer (19)

Charts[edit]

Certifications and sales[edit]

Certifications for Midnights, with pure sales where available
Region Certification Certified units/sales
Australia (ARIA)[153] 2× Platinum 140,000
Austria (IFPI Austria)[301] Platinum 15,000
Belgium (BEA)[302] Gold 10,000
Canada (Music Canada)[154] 2× Platinum 160,000
Denmark (IFPI Danmark)[303] 2× Platinum 40,000
France (SNEP)[304] Platinum 100,000
Germany (BVMI)[305] Gold 100,000
Italy (FIMI)[306] Platinum 50,000
Mexico (AMPROFON)[307] Platinum 140,000
New Zealand (RMNZ)[157] 4× Platinum 60,000
Norway (IFPI Norway)[308] Gold 10,000*
Poland (ZPAV)[155] 2× Platinum 40,000
Spain (PROMUSICAE)[309] Platinum 40,000
United Kingdom (BPI)[156] 2× Platinum 600,000
United States (RIAA)[139] 2× Platinum 2,814,000[k]

* Sales figures based on certification alone.
Sales+streaming figures based on certification alone.

Release history[edit]

Release dates and formats for Midnights
Region Date Format(s) Edition Label Ref.
Various October 21, 2022 Standard Republic [104][311]
  • Digital download
  • streaming
3am [312]
United States
  • CD
  • LP
Lavender [313]
Japan October 26, 2022 CD Deluxe Universal Japan [314]
Taiwan November 18, 2022 Standard Universal Taiwan [315]
Brazil December 14, 2022 Universal Brasil [316]
Deluxe [317]
United States January 5, 2023 Digital download Limited Republic [318]
May 22, 2023 Love Potion LP [319]
Various May 26, 2023
  • Digital download
  • streaming
Til Dawn [320]
United States CD Late Night [321]
Various Digital download [322]
Japan December 13, 2023 CD Universal Japan [323]

See also[edit]

Footnotes[edit]

  1. ^ Carr cited four songs to demonstrate this notion. The midnight imagery in "22" (2012) is youthful ("It feels like a perfect night for breakfast at midnight"), "Style" (2014) is sexy ("Midnight, you come and pick me up, no headlights"), "New Year's Day" (2017) is vulnerable ("I want your midnights"), and "The Last Great American Dynasty" (2020) is haunting (the protagonist is "seen on occasion/ pacing the rocks, staring out at the midnight sea").[16]
  2. ^ Attributed to Esquire's Alan Light,[3] NME's Hannah Mylrea,[26] PopMatters's Rick Quinn,[27] Pitchfork's Quinn Moreland,[28] and Entertainment Weekly's Allaire Nuss[29]
  3. ^ Attributed to Moreland,[28] The Atlantic's Spencer Kornharber,[58] The Guardian's Alexis Petridis,[66] Vulture's Craig Jenkins,[47] and The A.V. Club's Saloni Gajjar[44]
  4. ^ Attributed to Light,[3] The Times's Will Hodgkinson,[60] AllMusic's Stephen Thomas Erlewine,[67] and Slant Magazine's Paul Attard[45]
  5. ^ Attibuted to Petridis,[66] Moreland,[28] The Guardian's critic panel,[68] Exclaim!'s Megan LaPierre,[59] Paste's Ellen Johnson,[69] The New York Times' Lindsay Zoladz,[70] and The Observer's Kitty Empire[71]
  6. ^ Attributed to the Dallas Observer,[83] the Alternative Press,[84] and Pitchfork[63]
  7. ^ As noted by Grazia[93] and Vogue[94][95]
  8. ^ Swift had won Album of the Year with Fearless in 2010, 1989 in 2016, and Folklore in 2020[201]
  9. ^ Each year is linked to the article about the awards held that year, wherever possible.
  10. ^ Swift began her recording career at 16 with her self-titled debut album in 2006.[216] The discrepancy in years calculated by Molanphy (17) and Jericho (18) might be due to some misunderstandings.
  11. ^ US pure sales for Midnights as of January 2024[310]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c Lutz, Ashley (October 8, 2022). "Taylor Swift Is A Business Genius, And Her New Album Midnights Proves It". Fortune. Archived from the original on October 8, 2022. Retrieved November 29, 2023.
  2. ^ a b c d e f g h Snapes, Laura (October 14, 2022). "'Genuine': Why Taylor Swift Can Celebrate More than an Album Release". The Guardian. Archived from the original on October 14, 2022. Retrieved August 1, 2023.
  3. ^ a b c d e f g h i j Light, Alan (October 24, 2022). "Taylor Swift's Midnights Does Something Astonishing. Even For Her". Esquire. Archived from the original on January 17, 2023. Retrieved January 17, 2023.
  4. ^ a b McGrath 2023, p. 79.
  5. ^ McGrath 2023, p. 79; Fogarty & Arnold 2021, p. 5.
  6. ^ Melas, Chloe (November 16, 2020). "Taylor Swift Speaks Out about Sale of Her Masters". CNN. Archived from the original on November 18, 2020. Retrieved November 19, 2020.
  7. ^ "Taylor Swift Wants to Re-Record Her Old Hits". BBC News. August 22, 2019. Archived from the original on August 22, 2019. Retrieved August 22, 2019.
  8. ^ Finnis, Alex (November 17, 2020). "Taylor Swift Masters: The Controversy around Scooter Braun Selling the Rights to Her Old Music Explained". i. Archived from the original on February 12, 2021. Retrieved February 13, 2021.
  9. ^ Shah, Neil (April 9, 2021). "Taylor Swift Releases New Fearless Album, Reclaiming Her Back Catalog". The Wall Street Journal. Archived from the original on October 8, 2021. Retrieved September 25, 2022.
  10. ^ Lipshutz, Jason (July 6, 2023). "7 Key Stats Proving That Taylor Swift's First Two Taylor's Version Re-Recordings Have Been Dominant". Billboard. Archived from the original on July 7, 2023. Retrieved July 7, 2023.
  11. ^ Tribulski 2020–2021, p. 95–96.
  12. ^ Robledo, Anthony (July 22, 2022). "Watch Taylor Swift Join HAIM On Stage For a 'Mashup' of 'Love Story' and 'Gasoline'". USA Today. Archived from the original on August 4, 2023. Retrieved August 4, 2023.
  13. ^ Grein, Paul (August 29, 2022). "Taylor Swift Is First Artist to Achieve These VMAs Feats, Plus Other 2022 Record Setters". Billboard. Archived from the original on August 29, 2022. Retrieved August 29, 2022.
  14. ^ a b c Martoccio, Angie (August 29, 2022). "Taylor Swift Announces New Album Midnights: 'A Journey Through Terrors and Sweet Dreams'". Rolling Stone. Archived from the original on August 29, 2022. Retrieved August 29, 2022.
  15. ^ Grein, Paul (August 31, 2022). "Producers of 2022 VMAs on Why They Think the Ratings Ticked Up This Year: 'All the Stars Aligned'". Billboard. Archived from the original on August 31, 2022. Retrieved August 31, 2022.
  16. ^ a b c Carr, Mary Kate (August 29, 2022). "A Brief History of Taylor Swift's Midnights, In Honor of Her New Album". The A.V. Club. Archived from the original on August 31, 2022. Retrieved August 30, 2022.
  17. ^ Kaufman, Gil (October 21, 2022). "Taylor Swift's Midnights Songwriting Credits: Here's Who Wrote Each Song". Billboard. Archived from the original on February 27, 2023. Retrieved November 27, 2023.
  18. ^ Cantwell, Molly (September 19, 2022). "Taylor Swift Confirms Jack Antonoff Collaboration on Forthcoming Midnights". Hot Press. Archived from the original on December 9, 2023. Retrieved November 28, 2023.
  19. ^ a b c Curto, Justin (October 18, 2022). "Taylor Swift Has Been Sharing Midnights with Zoë Kravitz and William Bowery". Vulture. Archived from the original on April 3, 2023. Retrieved November 27, 2023.
  20. ^ a b Mier, Tomás (October 21, 2022). "Taylor Swift Surprises Fans With Midnights 3 A.M. Edition Featuring 7 Additional Songs". Rolling Stone. Archived from the original on October 26, 2022. Retrieved October 23, 2022.
  21. ^ Willman, Chris (October 21, 2022). "Taylor Swift Releases Deluxe 3 am Edition of Midnights With Seven Bonus Tracks". Variety. Archived from the original on October 22, 2022. Retrieved October 21, 2022.
  22. ^ Savage, Mark (October 19, 2022). "Midnights: What We Know About Taylor Swift's Songwriting". BBC. Archived from the original on October 19, 2022. Retrieved November 27, 2023.
  23. ^ a b c d e f g h i j Powers, Ann (October 21, 2022). "In the Haze of Midnights, Taylor Swift Softens Into An Expanded Sound". NPR. Archived from the original on October 21, 2022. Retrieved October 21, 2022.
  24. ^ a b c d e f g h Wilson, Carl (October 21, 2022). "Taylor Swift's Midnights Is the Right Kind of Concept Album". Slate. Archived from the original on October 21, 2022. Retrieved October 21, 2022.
  25. ^ a b c Caramanica, Jon (October 21, 2022). "Taylor Swift, Caught Between Yesterday and Tomorrow on Midnights". The New York Times. Archived from the original on October 22, 2022. Retrieved October 21, 2022.
  26. ^ a b c d Mylrea, Hannah (October 21, 2022). "Taylor Swift – Midnights Review: A Shimmering Return to Pure Pop". NME. Archived from the original on October 21, 2022. Retrieved October 21, 2022.
  27. ^ a b c d e f Quinn, Rick (November 2, 2022). "Taylor Swift: Midnights (Album Review)". PopMatters. Archived from the original on November 4, 2022. Retrieved November 4, 2022.
  28. ^ a b c d e f g h Moreland, Quinn (October 24, 2022). "Taylor Swift: Midnights Album Review". Pitchfork. Archived from the original on October 24, 2022. Retrieved October 24, 2022.
  29. ^ a b c Nuss, Allaire (November 7, 2022). "Taylor Swift's 10 Seminal Albums, Ranked". Entertainment Weekly. Archived from the original on November 26, 2022. Retrieved November 26, 2022.
  30. ^ Jackson, Lauren Michele (October 23, 2022). "In Taylor Swift's Midnights, the Easter Eggs Aren't the Point". The New Yorker. Archived from the original on October 23, 2022. Retrieved October 24, 2022.
  31. ^ a b c d Ryan, Elise (October 21, 2022). "Review: Taylor Swift Plays Dark, Electric on Midnights". Associated Press News. Archived from the original on October 21, 2022. Retrieved October 21, 2022.
  32. ^ a b c Brown, Helen (October 21, 2022). "Taylor Swift Review, Midnights: Her Darkest and Most Cryptic Album Yet". The Independent. Archived from the original on October 21, 2022. Retrieved October 21, 2022.
  33. ^ a b c d e Spanos, Brittany (October 21, 2022). "Taylor Swift Lets Us Into Her Darkest Dreams On Midnights". Rolling Stone. Archived from the original on October 21, 2022. Retrieved October 21, 2022.
  34. ^ Legaspi, Althea (October 12, 2022). "Taylor Swift Details 'Snow on the Beach' Featuring Lana Del Rey". Rolling Stone. Archived from the original on October 12, 2022. Retrieved October 12, 2022.
  35. ^ a b Kaplan, Ilana (October 21, 2022). "Review: Midnights Is Taylor Swift's Darkest, Most Self-Reflective Work To Date". Alternative Press. Archived from the original on October 21, 2022. Retrieved November 24, 2023.
  36. ^ a b c d Bilmes, Alex (October 21, 2022). "Taylor Swift's Midnights Is an Instant Classic". Esquire. Archived from the original on October 28, 2022. Retrieved October 28, 2022.
  37. ^ Thompson, Stephen; Willison, Margaret H.; Fathima, Hafsa; Reedy, Jessica; Touros, Cyrena (October 26, 2022). "Taylor Swift Stays Up Late For the Introspective Midnights". Pop Culture Happy Hour (Podcast). NPR. Archived from the original on December 2, 2022. Retrieved January 7, 2023.
  38. ^ Stedman, Harry (October 21, 2022). "Taylor Swift: What the Critics Are Saying About Her New Album, Midnights". Belfast Telegraph. Retrieved January 3, 2014.
  39. ^ a b c Zoladz, Lindsay (October 24, 2022). "Taylor Swift, 30-Something, Is Revising Her Own Love Stories". The New York Times. Archived from the original on October 27, 2022. Retrieved October 25, 2022.
  40. ^ Dailey, Hannah (October 7, 2022). "Taylor Swift Reveals How Joe Alwyn Inspired This Midnights Song". Billboard. Archived from the original on October 7, 2022. Retrieved October 7, 2022.
  41. ^ Willman, Chris (October 7, 2022). "Taylor Swift Explains New Song, 'Lavender Haze', From Mad Men Origin to Relationship-Protecting Theme". Variety. Archived from the original on October 7, 2022. Retrieved October 7, 2022.
  42. ^ a b Carlin, Shannon (October 21, 2022). "Taylor Swift's Midnights: The Biggest Takeaways". Time. Archived from the original on November 2, 2022. Retrieved November 3, 2022.
  43. ^ Lipshutz, Jason (October 21, 2022). "Every Song Ranked on Taylor Swift's Midnights". Billboard. Archived from the original on October 21, 2022. Retrieved October 23, 2022.
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