Reputation (Taylor Swift album)

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Reputation
Black-and-white image of Taylor Swift with the album's name written across it
Studio album by
ReleasedNovember 10, 2017 (2017-11-10)
Studio
  • Conway (Los Angeles)
  • MXM (Los Angeles/Stockholm)
  • Rough Customer (Brooklyn)
  • Seismic Activities (Portland)
  • Tree Sound (Atlanta)
Genre
Length55:38
LabelBig Machine
Producer
Taylor Swift chronology
1989
(2014)
Reputation
(2017)
Lover
(2019)
Singles from Reputation
  1. "Look What You Made Me Do"
    Released: August 24, 2017
  2. "...Ready for It?"
    Released: September 17, 2017
  3. "End Game"
    Released: November 14, 2017
  4. "New Year's Day"
    Released: November 27, 2017
  5. "Delicate"
    Released: March 12, 2018
  6. "Getaway Car"
    Released: September 27, 2018

Reputation (stylized in all lowercase) is the sixth studio album by American singer-songwriter Taylor Swift. It was released on November 10, 2017, by Big Machine Records. Following her fifth studio album 1989 (2014), Swift was involved in highly publicized disputes with multiple celebrities and became a subject of widespread tabloid scrutiny. She hence secluded herself from the press and social media, where she had maintained an active presence, and created Reputation as an effort to revamp her state of mind.

Influenced by the media scrutiny, Swift wrote Reputation under two major themes; one drawing from the excessive gossips surrounding her, and the other about finding love amidst the tumultuous events. She recruited producers Jack Antonoff, Max Martin, and Shellback in the album's production. Marking a stark shift from the synth-pop style of its predecessor, Reputation is built around dark electropop and R&B, inspired by urban genres such as EDM, hip hop, trap, and Miami bass, resulting in a heavy electronic production consisting of surging synthesizers, pulsing drum machines, and manipulated vocals. Retrospectively, Swift stated she played an alter ego in the album.

Unlike her previous efforts, Swift did not promote Reputation through press interviews. Four international singles supported the album: "Look What You Made Me Do", "...Ready for It?", "End Game", and "Delicate", the first two of which reached the top-five of the Billboard Hot 100, with the former topping the chart for three weeks. "New Year's Day" was released to US country radio, whereas "Getaway Car" was released in Australia only. Critical response to Reputation was generally positive; reviewers were divided on the brash sound and harsh themes, but praised Swift's resilient songwriting, specifically on the songs about romantic intimacy. Some critics found the album a personal record in which Swift expresses her innermost vulnerability to an ideal lover and discovers her true self.

The album was Swift's fourth consecutive album to debut atop the US Billboard 200 with first-week sales of over 1.2 million copies, and reached number one in various countries, including Australia, Canada, and the UK. Selling over 4.5 million copies in 2017, Reputation became the world's best selling album by a female artist. It was supported by the Reputation Stadium Tour (2018), which became the highest-grossing North American tour of all time. Reputation was nominated for Best Pop Vocal Album at the 61st Annual Grammy Awards, listed on Slant Magazine's list of the best albums of the 2010s decade, and has received sales certifications across the globe. Swift cleared out her website and social media accounts five days before announcing Reputation, generating widespread attention across the internet; various artists have since used this tactic to announce new music.

Background

Taylor Swift released her fifth studio album, 1989, in October 2014.[1] The album's synth-pop production established Swift's official departure from the country-oriented styles of her previous records.[2] It received generally positive reviews from contemporary critics.[3] A huge commercial success, the album sold over six million copies in the United States[4] and spawned three US Billboard Hot 100 number-one singles–"Shake It Off", "Blank Space", and "Bad Blood".[5] Its accompanying tour ran from May to December 2015 and was the highest-grossing concert tour of 2015.[6] During promotion of 1989, Swift continued to be a major target of tabloid gossip. She had short-lived romantic relationships with Scottish producer Calvin Harris and English actor Tom Hiddleston. Her reputation was blemished from publicized feuds with several high-profile celebrities, most notably rapper Kanye West, media personality Kim Kardashian, and singer Katy Perry.[7] Swift became increasingly reticent on social media, having maintained an active presence with a large following, and avoided interactions with the press amidst the tumultuous affairs.[8]

On August 16, 2017, Swift cleared out her website and all of her social media accounts, including Facebook, Instagram and Twitter. Two days later, a glitchy ten-second video of a snake was uploaded to her social accounts; two more such videos were posted in the next couple of days.[9] On August 23, 2017, Swift made posts across her social media, introducing Reputation as her upcoming sixth album, and added that its lead single, "Look What You Made Me Do" would come out the following night.[10]

Production

Antonoff playing a guitar
Jack Antonoff produced six songs on Reputation. His recording sessions with Swift took place mostly at his home studio.

During her seclusion from social media, Swift worked on her sixth studio album with two production teams: one with pop rock producer Jack Antonoff, and the other with Swedish producers Max Martin and Shellback. She had previously worked with all three producers on 1989. By choosing a smaller production team compared to that of 1989, Swift envisioned that the album would be more coherent but still "versatile enough to kill 1989."[11] She wrote the songs as a "defense mechanism" against the tumultuous media gossip targeting her during the time, and as a means to revamp her state of mind. Elaborating on the songwriting, Swift told Rolling Stone in a 2019 interview that she followed the songwriting for her 2014 single "Blank Space", on which she satirized her perceived image. She said, "I took that template of, OK, this is what you're all saying about me. Let me just write from this character for a second."[12] In addition to the media commotion, love and friendship are major inspirations on the album, which corroborates Swift's trademark autobiographical storytelling through her songs.[13]

The final cut of Reputation consists of 15 tracks, all of which Swift co-wrote.[14] Martin and Shellback, the former of whom was co-executive producer with Swift on 1989, co-wrote and produced nine songs.[14][15] Antonoff co-wrote and produced the remaining six.[14] Swift's recording sessions with Antonoff mostly took place at his home studio in Brooklyn, with several trips to Atlanta and California for him to incorporate ideas from other producers.[16][17] According to Antonoff, the sessions tried to capture Swift's emotions at a particular time, when "you can feel like you can conquer the world, or you can feel like the biggest piece of garbage that ever existed", resulting in a "very intense" record.[17] He encouraged Swift to portray emotional honesty, which he also implemented for his previous works with other musicians including Lorde and St. Vincent.[18] He spoke of his work experience with Swift on Entertainment Weekly:

She is great at remembering the heart and soul of the process. Some people forget it — sometimes something works and everyone starts to rewire it. But she's really great at knowing what it's about: talking about what the hell is going on in your life and somehow finding a way to take that exact emotion and make a song out of it. That was the theme of those sessions: "Let’s just tell this story, whatever that story is, because that's the whole point."[17]

As Swift wanted to record the album in secrecy, he kept his studio computer offline to prevent a possible internet leak, and deleted the recording trials once the mixing and mastering finalized.[16] The tracks produced by Antonoff feature a 1980s-styled sound equipped with pulsing synthesizers and upbeat choruses.[19] For instance, Antonoff produced the song "Call It What You Want" using an Akai MPC and a Yamaha DX7 synthesizer.[20] He cited that the song "Look What You Made Me Do", which would be the album's lead single, "came from nowhere ... Nothing I do is really that planned." Incorporating an interpolation of "I'm Too Sexy" by English band Right Said Fred, which Antonoff felt that it would bring about a "shock" element,[21] the song is produced using "mostly modular synth, drums, big fuzzy guitars through those EMI strips that come in in the second pre-chorus."[16] An exception was the album's final track, "New Year's Day", which Antonoff and Swift recorded on an acoustic piano devoid of electronic sounds.[17]

Music and lyrics

Swift referred to Reputation as her "most cathartic album",[22] and called the whole album "a metaphor".[23] She described the album's aesthetic as "evening-night",[24] "all cityscape, darkness, full swamp witch".[25] In 2019, Swift revealed the reason why the album's title is in all lowercase, stating that Reputation "felt like it wasn't unapologetically commercial". Swift also highlighted out that she played an alter ego in Reputation, explaining "it was just so fun to play with on tour — the darkness and the bombast and the bitterness and the love and the ups and the downs of an emotional-turmoil record".[26] The album's title alludes to many of its lyrical themes, such as handling fame and media scrutiny of celebrities. The cover artwork, which portrays Swift over a background of a tabloid publication, reinforces these themes. The title also is derived from lyrics on the songs "End Game" ("Big reputation, big reputation, ooh, you and me we got big reputations") and "Delicate" ("My reputation's never been worse").[27] The New York Times called Reputation a concept album.[28]

Starkly departing from the synth-pop textures of 1989, Reputation incorporates thumping trap beats, EDM, melancholic synthesizers, and Miami bass.[29] Greg Kot, writing for Chicago Tribune, described the album as "another shift, this time into electropop".[30] Neil McCormick, from The Daily Telegraph, defined it as "brash, weaponised pop",[31] while Sam Murphy of Junkee described Reputation's sound as inflected to "dark trap".[32] NPR's Ann Powers pointed out the influences of urban genres, such as hip hop and EDM, found throughout the album.[33] Kitty Empire of The Observer labeled Reputation a "riveting R&B set".[34] Swift explained that the album had a linear timeline, starting with how she felt when she started working on the album, and transitioning to how she feels now,[35] with several songs inspired by the epic fantasy television series Game of Thrones.[36]

Songwriters need to communicate, and part of communicating correctly is when you put out a message that is understood the way you meant it. Reputation was interesting because I'd never before had an album that wasn't fully understood until it was seen live. When it first came out everyone thought it was just going to be angry; upon listening to the whole thing they realized it's actually about love and friendship, and finding out what your priorities are.

— Swift on the real meaning of Reputation, Entertainment Weekly[37]

Songs

American rapper Future
English singer-songwriter Ed Sheeran
"End Game", the second track on Reputation, features vocals from American rapper Future and English singer-songwriter Ed Sheeran.

The opening track, "...Ready for It?", is a "pop-oriented",[38] "electronic-inspired"[39] electropop[40] and industrial pop song,[40][41] with a thumping bassline[42] and elements of tropical house,[43] rap,[44] dubstep[45] and trap.[46] Swift states the song "introduces a metaphor you may hear more of throughout the rest album, which is like this kind of Crime and Punishment metaphor". The track is "basically about finding your own partner in crime", Swift said.[11] "End Game", featuring American rapper Future and English singer Ed Sheeran, is a self-reflective hip hop,[47] R&B[48] and pop-rap[49] slow jam.[42] It centers around the idea of Swift wanting to be some guy's "end game" or the one that he's aiming for.[50] Heavily manipulated by electronic elements and punctuated by strong beats, "I Did Something Bad" is a "bombastic" track with "unapologetic" lyrics that address "some of the narratives" that have surrounded Swift, incorporating a funky dubstep drop.[42] The song was initially developed on a piano. Swift explained to iHeartRadio that the idea for the production of the song came to her in a dream. Swift described the concept to producer Max Martin, who used Swift's voice and pitched it down to create the desired effect in the post-chorus.[11] The song's lyrics were inspired by events taking place in the season 7 finale episode of Game of Thrones and four of the series' central female characters: Sansa Stark, Arya Stark, Daenerys Targaryen, and Cersei Lannister.[36]

"Don't Blame Me" is a moody, atmospheric, "thunderous" electropop song with a dark, "thick" production of slick synthesizers, echoes and self-harmonization, building into a gospel-backed EDM anthem. The song is noted for Swift's "fierce" vocal performance, and the gothic "love-as-a-drug" imagery.[44][42] "Delicate" is a melodic "electro-ballad" and love song, with tropical house and dance-pop inflections, and a notable resonant refrain.[42][51] Swift's goal for the song was to use a vocoder to create an "emotional" and "vulnerable" sound for the track. The song is about "what happens when you meet somebody that you really want in your life and then you start worrying about what they've heard before they met you".[11]

The sixth track, "Look What You Made Me Do", started out as a poem and is "about realizing that you couldn't trust certain people, but realizing you appreciate the people you can trust."[11] It interpolates the song "I'm Too Sexy" by the British dance-pop group Right Said Fred.[52] Another Game of Thrones-inspired track, the line "I've got a list of names and yours is in red, underlined" acts as a reference to Arya Stark's kill list in the show.[36] "So It Goes..." opens with a murky segment and advances into a trap-lite chorus. Lyrically, it sees Swift "getting caught up in the moment" and "reflecting on just how a new love interest might help her out of her fixations", using a magician imagery.[42] "Gorgeous" has been described as a "fizzy" and "delightful", radio-friendly pop song,[53] that depicts "the pursuit of a maddening love interest", whom Swift describes as "gorgeous".[54] The song has an electropop production that employs an 808 drum,[55] over a bubbling, chime-like beat. The baby voice featured in the song's intro is a sample of that of James Reynolds, daughter of Blake Lively and Ryan Reynolds.[42]

The ninth track, "Getaway Car", namedrops Bonnie and Clyde, an infamous American criminal couple who robbed banks in the U.S. during the Great Depression.

"Getaway Car" is a cinematic synth-pop number with a shimmering '80s production, reminiscent of the sounds of 1989 (2014).[48] The song sees Swift performing a metaphorical heist, through an "ill-fated love adventure",[42] attempting to leave a "doomed" relationship for someone else, using a crime scene escape imagery. Swift also mentions Bonnie and Clyde in the lyrics.[56] "King of My Heart" is a synth-heavy track,[42] which Swift structured such that each individual section of the song was its own phase of a relationship, with the sections getting deeper and more fast-paced as the song went on.[11] Once again, the song's lyrics were inspired by Game of Thrones and its characters, specifically the romantic relationship between Daenerys and Khal Drogo, whereas the programmed drums in the song were influenced by the drums played by the Dothraki, a clan in the series.[36]

The eleventh track, "Dancing With Our Hands Tied", begins as a melancholic downtempo song that discusses Swift's "will-we-won’t-we tale" of star-crossed lovers, "separated by an unkind fate",[42] and also sees her singing about how "her every action is under the microscope".[57] The sultry "Dress" contains Swift's breathy vocals,[42] with lyrics that she "came up with like a year before".[11] It has been described as Swift's "most overtly sexual work yet"[42] and "sexiest song to-date",[58] bringing out "her sensual side at last".[59] Opening with a siren sound, "This Is Why We Can't Have Nice Things" heavily references Swift's highly publicized feud with American rapper Kanye West and television personality Kim Kardashian. The song is a "stomping call-out of the haters", and features "a burst" of Swift's laughter.[42]

The fourteenth track, "Call It What You Want", was recorded at Antonoff's home studio in Brooklyn.[60] Swift said the song best represents her then emotional state.[35] The song has been described as a "slow-burning meditation" and the "most by-the-book Swift song", filled with lyrical puns.[42] It is a "stark" synth-pop love song,[61] in which Swift raps softly over a production "made with an MPC, live kick, dx7 strings", sampling her voice in the intro and throughout, "making her voice into an instrument".[62][63] Reputation concludes with the country tune "New Year's Day",[64] which explores the flip-side of the romanticism of a New Year's Eve kiss, and is about how "the one that sticks around the next day" to "give you Advil and clean up the house" is the person that matters more.[35][11] The track is a tender, intimate, acoustic piano ballad and love song, with lyrics acting as "evocative" snapshots, such as: "glitter on the floor after a party", "candle wax and polaroids on the hardwood floor", and "holding hands in the backseat of a taxi".[42]

Artwork and packaging

Reputation's cover art was photographed by Mert and Marcus[65] in London.[66] The cover features Swift in her signature lipstick, slicked-back hair, grey sweatshirt, and choker necklace. Newspaper headlines and columns are superimposed over one side of her face, which is a mockery at media that plagued her life.[67][68] The typeface used for the headlines is reminiscent of the signature font of The New York Times.[69] Target released two 72-page magazines that contain different content, including the album in the US.[70] Walmart distributed it in Canada.[71] The magazines contain photos, handwritten lyrics, poetry and paintings by Swift.[72] The Reputation Vol. 1 magazine cover was shot by Mert and Marcus. Vol. 2 was shot by Benny Horne and features Swift in a camouflage jacket.[73]

Release and promotion

Follow her social media blackout, Swift first announced through Instagram on August 23, 2017, that her sixth album would be titled Reputation and released on November 10, 2017.[74] The album's lead single, "Look What You Made Me Do", was released the next day on August 24.[75][76] On September 2, Swift teased a second song during ABC's Saturday Night Football telecast and was later posted on Instagram, titled "...Ready for It?", previewing the new track.[77] The song was released on September 3, 2017, as a promotional single. On October 20, 2017, Swift released a third song titled "Gorgeous" at midnight as a promotional single.[78] A track named "Call It What You Want" was released on November 2, 2017, as a promotional single with an accompanying lyric video.[79]

On November 7, Bloomberg reported the album would be kept off streaming services upon release for an undetermined amount of time and would only be available to purchase in digital and physical formats.[80] Later that same day, Swift posted the album's track list to her social media accounts.[81] Reputation became available to streaming services on December 1, 2017.[82] Digital purchases were initially exclusively sold through iTunes and as a full album only.[83] Streaming was limited to a branded internet radio station on iHeartRadio's website and app until December 2017.[84]

Released after a period of highly publicized disputes and immense media and internet scrutiny of Swift, Reputation is regarded as a comeback album by critics and fans alike, seeing Swift "claim her narrative".[85][86] The lead single, "Look What You Made Me Do", released after a year of hiatus from public spotlight, is considered as one of pop music's most memorable moments, bolstered by its music video.[87][88] Prior to the song's release, Swift cleared out her website and all her social media, including Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.[89] Two days after the blackout, cryptic, glitchy and caption-less snake videos were uploaded to her social media, leading to the announcement of the album and its lead single.[85] Reputation's "social media blackout" promotional campaign set a precedent for other pop stars to emulate.[90] Reputation was Swift's last studio album to be released under Big Machine Records. In November 2018, Swift departed Big Machine Records for Republic Records.[91]

Marketing

At the very beginning of the album I was pretty proud of coining the term: 'There will be no explanation. There will just be Reputation', and so that was what I decided was going to be the album, and I stuck with it. I didn't go back on it. I didn't try to explain the album because I didn't feel that I owed that to anyone. There was a lot that happened over a couple of years that made me feel really, really terrible. And I didn't feel like expressing that to them. I didn't feel like talking about it. I just felt like making music, then going out on the road and doing a stadium tour and doing everything I could for my fans.

— Swift on why she didn't do interviews to promote Reputation, Refinery29[92]

In August 2017, United Parcel Service (UPS) announced it would be the "Official Delivery Partner" for Reputation.[93] UPS trucks in select cities featured the Reputation album cover, and fans were encouraged to take pictures of the trucks and post images to Twitter with a hashtag for an "improved opportunity" to buy concert tickets.[94]

A month before the album's release, Swift hosted exclusive secret sessions in London,[95] Rhode Island,[96] Los Angeles[97] and Nashville.[98] She said, "Everything about this album is a secret." Each party had a number of attendees, with a total of 500 fans chosen from around the world, for whom the album was played but none of them leaked any music. The behind the scenes footage for the sessions was released on November 7 on ABC's Good Morning America.[99] Swift partnered with AT&T to produce a multi-part behind-the-scenes series chronicling the making of Reputation, titled "The Making of a Song". The online series started on November 1 on AT&T's YouTube channel.[100]

On November 9, a performance of the song "New Year's Day" was premiered during the broadcast of an episode of ABC's Scandal.[99] It was filmed in one of the secret sessions, held at Swift's home in Rhode Island on October 18, with an audience of 100 fans.[101] An extended version of Swift's performance was aired on November 10, during The DUFF's air on Freeform.[102] On November 11, Swift was the musical guest on the fifth episode of the 43rd season of Saturday Night Live, where she performed "...Ready for It?" and "Call It What You Want" from the album.[103] It was her first appearance on live television following the album's release, and her first appearance on the show since 2009.[104][105]

Singles

On August 24, 2017, "Look What You Made Me Do" was released as the lead single from Reputation. The song broke several major records including the most Spotify streams in a 24-hour period by any artist.[106] It hit number one on the US Billboard Hot 100 with the biggest sales and streaming figures of the year, becoming the fifth song by Swift to top the chart and also the first solo number one by a woman with 84.4 million streams since Adele's "Hello" in 2015 and the second biggest after "Harlem Shake" (103.3 million).[107] Its accompanying music video later premiered at the 2017 MTV Video Music Awards and was viewed 43.2 million times on YouTube in its first 24 hours, the most in any video in history breaking the 36 million views of "Gentleman" in 2013.[108]

On September 2, 2017, Swift teased on Instagram that the opening track off of Reputation, titled "...Ready for It?", was going to be released as a promotional single.[109] It was made available for digital download with the pre-order of Reputation on September 3.[110] Upon release, the song landed inside the top-10 of singles charts worldwide, including its entry at number four on the Billboard Hot 100.[111] On October 24, "...Ready for It?" was upgraded into the album's second single, impacting US rhythmic contemporary radio;[112] its official music video premiered three days later.[113]

"End Game", featuring Ed Sheeran and Future, was released to French radio on November 14, 2017, as the album's third single.[114] The song's music video was released in January 2018 after Sheeran confirmed its existence in early December 2017.[115] "New Year's Day" was serviced to American country radio as the album's fourth single on November 27, 2017.[116]

"Delicate" was sent to contemporary hit and adult contemporary radio as the album's fourth international single on March 12, 2018.[51] Its music video premiered at the 2018 iHeartRadio Music Awards.[117] It was the second single from Reputation to enter the top 10 of Billboard's Radio Songs chart (peaking at number two), after lead single "Look What You Made Me Do".[118][119] A strong radio success, "Delicate" topped the Billboard Pop Songs chart,[120] and was Reputation's first number-one single on the Billboard Adult Pop Songs[121] and Adult Contemporary charts.[122] It became the biggest single from Reputation on the US radio.[123] "Delicate" peaked at number 12 and spent 35 weeks on the Billboard Hot 100, the longest-charting single from the album as well. It was one of the 10 most successful songs on US airplay of 2018, culminating 2.509 billion radio audience impressions.[124][125]

"Getaway Car" was the album's final single in Australia and New Zealand.[126]

Promotional singles

On October 19, 2017, Swift announced she would be releasing a new song titled "Gorgeous".[127] It became available the next day through digital retailers and streaming services as a promotional single from the album.[78] The song reached the top ten in Canada and Australia and the top twenty in the United Kingdom and United States. BBC Radio 1 added the song to its playlist on January 12, 2018.[128]

On November 2, 2017, Swift announced she would be releasing the second promotional song from Reputation, while posting teasers on her official Twitter and Instagram accounts. The track, titled "Call It What You Want" was released at midnight on November 3, 2017.[79]

Tour

Swift performing at the Reputation Stadium Tour in 2018

In August 2017, Swift partnered with Ticketmaster for a bundling program, with people wishing to buy her concert tickets could gain priority by purchasing merchandise and pre-ordering Reputation.[93][129] On November 13, 2017, Swift announced she would be embarking on the Reputation Stadium Tour in 2018 in support of Reputation, first announcing North American dates. The tour began on May 8, 2018, at the University of Phoenix Stadium in Glendale, Arizona, and concluded on November 21, 2018, at the Tokyo Dome in Tokyo, Japan, with a total of 53 dates in stadiums throughout North America, Europe, Oceania and Asia.[130] A concert film of the tour was released on Netflix on December 31, 2018, and it was filmed during the two last concerts of the North American leg, on October 5 and 6 at AT&T Stadium in Arlington, Texas.

Critical reception

Professional ratings
Aggregate scores
SourceRating
AnyDecentMusic?6.6/10[131]
Metacritic71/100[132]
Review scores
SourceRating
AllMusic3/5 stars[133]
The A.V. ClubB[29]
The Daily Telegraph4/5 stars[31]
Entertainment WeeklyB[134]
The Guardian4/5 stars[135]
NME4/5 stars[136]
Pitchfork6.5/10[137]
Q3/5 stars[138]
Rolling Stone4/5 stars[139]
Slant Magazine4/5 stars[140]

Reputation received generally positive reviews from music critics. Most reviewers praised Swift's mature artistry, while some denounced the themes of fame and gossip.[141] At Metacritic, which assigns a normalized rating out of 100 to reviews from professional publications, the album received a weighted average score of 71 based on 28 reviews.[132]

The Guardian writer Alexis Petridis opined Reputation, "may be mired in bitterness and gossip, but the pop star's songwriting smarts and lyrical prowess are impossible to deny on her sixth album", noting the songs see "Swift cutting her last ties with her Nashville roots in favour of the blare and honk of EDM-influenced pop".[135] Rolling Stone's Rob Sheffield writes Reputation, "shows the darker, deeper side of the pop mastermind". Sheffield also remarked, "As one of the all-time great pop masterminds, she's trying something new, as she always does."[139] Roisin O'Connor of The Independent says "Call It What You Want" is "arguably, the best song Swift has ever made", also praising Jack Antonoff's production, calling it "essential" to the album; "[Antonoff's] love of Eighties synth-pop is the perfect counterbalance to Max Martin and Shellback's dance and electronic touch".[142] Neil McCormick of The Daily Telegraph states, "Reputation is a big, brash, all-guns-blazing blast of weaponised pop that grapples with the vulnerability of the human heart as it is pummelled by 21st-century fame." McCormick continued, "This is an album with blockbuster event status, preceded by a satirical hit ("Look What You Made Me Do") in which she provocatively ditched her "girl-next-door" image for something more glamorously sophisticated."[31] Troy Smith from The Plain Dealer said the album served as a reminder of Swift's songwriting talent, labeling "New Year's Day", "End Game", "Delicate" and "Dress" as standouts of the album.[143][144]

In a negative review, Geoff Nelson of Consequence of Sound gave the album a D+ rating writing, "Swift's sixth studio album, is a bloated, moving disaster." Nelson continued, "Reputation doesn't improve past its initial singles, even if the chorus of "...Ready for It?" is one of the few vestiges of 1989 Taylor on the album. Elsewhere, Swift finds trouble: She raps, she adopts African-American Vernacular English, and she bizarrely collaborates with Future." Nelson called "Gorgeous", "Delicate", and "Call It What You Want" the "strongest moments on the album".[145]

Year-end lists

Publication List Rank Ref.
AXS 10 Best Pop Albums of 2017
2
Chorus.fm Craig Manning's Top 40 Best Albums of 2017
31
Complex The Best Albums of 2017
26
The Independent The 30 best albums of 2017
19
LineUp LineUp's 2017 Albums of the Year
3
Los Angeles Times Mikael Wood's Top 10 Albums of 2017 N/A
Melty Best Pop Albums of the Year
8
musicOMH Top 50 Albums of 2017
16
Newsday Best Albums of 2017
22
The New York Times
(Jon Caramanica)
The Best Albums of 2017
5
NME NME's Albums of the Year
31
Pazz & Jop The Top 100 Albums of 2017
71
People 10 Best Albums of 2017 N/A
Rolling Stone 50 Best Albums of 2017
7
Rolling Stone Rob Sheffield's Top 20 Albums of 2017
2
San Jose Mercury News Top 10 Albums of 2017
5
Slant Magazine 25 Best Albums of 2017
17
Spin 50 Best Albums of 2017
48
The Sydney Morning Herald Top 20 Albums of 2017 N/A
Thrillist The Best Albums of 2017
23
Time The Top 10 Albums of 2017
9
Us Weekly 10 Best Albums of 2017
3
V Magazine The 10 Best Albums of 2017 N/A
Variety The Best Albums of 2017 N/A

Decade-end lists

Publication List Rank Ref.
Slant Magazine The 100 Best Albums of the 2010s
88

Awards and nominations

Year Organization Award Result Ref.
2017 BuzzAngle Music Awards
Physical Album Sales Won [171]
Digital Album Sales Won
Indie Album Won
2018 A2IM Libera Awards Independent Impact Award Won [172]
American Music Awards Favorite Pop/Rock Album Won [173]
Billboard Music Awards Top Billboard 200 Album Nominated [174]
Top Selling Album Won
ARIA Music Awards Best International Artist (Reputation) Nominated [175]
Japan Gold Disc Awards Best 3 Albums (Western) Won [176]
Juno Awards International Album of the Year Nominated [177]
2019 Grammy Awards Best Pop Vocal Album Nominated [178]
ADDY American Advertising Awards Packaging (Reputation VIP box) Won [179]
Book Design (Reputation VIP box) Won

Commercial performance

Swift performing at her Reputation Stadium Tour

Worldwide, Reputation sold two million copies in its first week.[180] In the U.S., the album sold roughly 700,000 copies after one day of availability,[181] and 1.05 million within four days of release.[182] Reputation ultimately became Swift's fifth number-one album on the US Billboard 200, debuting at number one with first-week figures of 1.238 million album-equivalent units that consisted of 1.216 million pure sales. It was her fourth album to sell a million copies in its first week, making Swift the first artist to have four albums each sell more than a million copies within one week since Nielsen SoundScan began tracking sales in 1991.[183] It sold more than all other albums on the chart that week combined.[180]

The album spent a total of four non-consecutive weeks at number one.[184] It was the fourth to spend three or more weeks atop the Billboard 200 in 2017, after Starboy by The Weeknd, More Life by Drake, and Damn by Kendrick Lamar.[185] Selling 1,903,000 copies by the end of 2017, Reputation was the best-selling album of the year in the U.S. In terms of total album-equivalent units, it earned 2,336,000 units, the year's third largest overall consumption behind Lamar's Damn and Ed Sheeran's ÷.[186] It was 2018's Billboard 200 Year-End number-one album.[187] By July 2019, the album had sold 2.23 million copies in the U.S.[4] Reputation was certified 3× Platinum by the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) for surpassing three million album consumption units.[188]

In Canada, Reputation was Swift's fifth number-one album on the Canadian Albums Chart. With first-week sales of 80,000 copies (81,000 album-equivalent units in total), it had the largest opening for an album in 2017.[189] It spent three consecutive weeks atop the Canadian Albums Chart.[190] The album sold 65,000 copies in the U.K. within three days,[191] and opened atop the UK Albums Chart with 84,000 copies, becoming Swift's third UK number-one album.[192] The album was certified Gold by the British Phonographic Industry (BPI).[193] Reputation also peaked atop the albums charts in European and Oceanic countries including Australia, Australia, Ireland, the Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Portugal, Slovakia, Spain, and Switzerland.[194] It was certified triple platinum in Australia,[195] double platinum in New Zealand,[196] and platinum in Austria.[197]

Reputation also achieved success in Asia. It became one of the best-selling digital albums in China, having sold over one million units as of August 2019.[198][199] The album was certified platinum in Singapore[200] and gold in Japan, where it peaked at number three on the Japanese Oricon albums chart.[201] According to the International Federation of the Phonographic Industry (IFPI), Reputation was the world's second-best-selling album of 2017, with 4.5 million copies sold.[202]

Track listing

Reputation – Standard edition[203][204]
No.TitleWriter(s)Producer(s)Length
1."…Ready for It?"
  • Martin
  • Shellback
  • Payami
3:28
2."End Game" (featuring Ed Sheeran and Future)
4:04
3."I Did Something Bad"
  • Swift
  • Martin
  • Shellback
  • Martin
  • Shellback
3:58
4."Don't Blame Me"
  • Swift
  • Martin
  • Shellback
  • Martin
  • Shellback
3:56
5."Delicate"
  • Swift
  • Martin
  • Shellback
  • Martin
  • Shellback
3:52
6."Look What You Made Me Do"
  • Swift
  • Antonoff
3:31
7."So It Goes…"
  • Martin
  • Shellback
  • Görres
3:47
8."Gorgeous"
  • Swift
  • Martin
  • Shellback
  • Martin
  • Shellback
3:29
9."Getaway Car"
  • Swift
  • Antonoff
  • Swift
  • Antonoff
3:53
10."King of My Heart"
  • Swift
  • Martin
  • Shellback
  • Martin
  • Shellback
3:34
11."Dancing with Our Hands Tied"
  • Martin
  • Shellback
  • Holter
3:31
12."Dress"
  • Swift
  • Antonoff
  • Swift
  • Antonoff
3:50
13."This Is Why We Can't Have Nice Things"
  • Swift
  • Antonoff
  • Swift
  • Antonoff
3:27
14."Call It What You Want"
  • Swift
  • Antonoff
  • Swift
  • Antonoff
3:23
15."New Year's Day"
  • Swift
  • Antonoff
  • Swift
  • Antonoff
3:55
Total length:55:38
Reputation – Japanese deluxe edition (bonus DVD)[205]
No.TitleDirector(s)Length
1."Look What You Made Me Do" (music video)Joseph Kahn4:16
2."Look What You Made Me Do" (lyric video)
  • Kahn
  • Swift
3:35
3."Look What You Made Me Do" (making of)Firefly Entertainment12:09
Total length:20:00

Notes

  • ^a signifies an additional vocal producer

Sample

Personnel

Credits are adapted from the album liner notes.[14]

  • Taylor Swift – all vocals; backing vocals (tracks: 1, 4, 10); writer (all tracks); producer (tracks: 6, 9, 12–15); executive producer; packaging creative design, package direction, creative packaging direction
  • Max Martin – producer, writer, keyboards, programming (tracks: 1–5, 7, 8, 10, 11); recording (track 1); piano (tracks: 4, 5); backing vocals (track 4)
  • Shellback – producer, writer, keyboards, programming (tracks: 1–5, 7, 8, 10, 11); drums (tracks: 2, 4, 10); bass (tracks: 2, 10); guitars (track 8)
  • Ali Payami – producer, writer, keyboards, programming (track 1)
  • Jack Antonoff – producer, writer, programming, instruments (tracks: 6, 9, 12–14); backing vocals (tracks: 6, 9, 14); piano, bass, guitar, synths (track 15)
  • Oscar Görres – producer, writer, keyboards, programming, piano (track 7)
  • Oscar Holter – producer, writer, keyboards, programming (track 11)
  • Michael Ilbert – engineer (tracks: 2–5, 7, 8, 10, 11)
  • Sam Holland – engineer (tracks: 2–5, 7, 8, 11)
  • Laura Sisk – engineer (tracks: 6, 9, 12, 13, 15)
  • Noah Passovoy – engineer (track 10)
  • Cory Bice – assistant engineer (tracks: 2–5, 7, 10, 11)
  • Jeremy Lertola – assistant engineer (tracks: 2, 4, 5, 7, 10, 11)
  • Jon Sher – assistant engineer (track 10)
  • Ed Sheeran – featured artist, writer (track 2)
  • Future – featured artist, writer (track 2)
  • Ilya Salmanzadeh – additional vocal production (track 2)
  • Seth Ferkins – engineer (track 2)
  • Sean Flora – assistant engineer (track 2)
  • Peter Karlsson – assistant engineer (track 2)
  • Mike Synphony – assistant engineer (track 2)
  • Daniel Watson – assistant engineer (track 2)
  • Victoria Parker – violins (tracks: 6, 9, 13); viola (track 13)
  • Phillip A. Peterson – cellos (tracks: 6, 9, 13)
  • Evan Smith – saxophones (track 6)
  • James Reynolds – baby voice intro (track 8)
  • Sean Hutchinson – drums (track 9)
  • Serban Ghenea – mixing (all tracks)
  • John Hanes – mix engineer (all tracks)
  • Randy Merrill – mastering (all tracks)
  • Mert and Marcus – photography
  • Mat Maitland – photo creative direction
  • Joseph Cassell – wardrobe stylist
  • Isamaya French – makeup
  • Lorraine Griffin – manicurist
  • Paul Hanlon – hair
  • Josh and Bethany Newman – packaging art direction
  • Ben Fieker – packaging design
  • Parker Foote – packaging design
  • Austin Hale – packaging design

Charts

Certifications and sales

Certifications for Reputation, with pure sales where available
Region Certification Certified units/sales
Australia (ARIA)[195] 3× Platinum 210,000double-dagger
Austria (IFPI Austria)[197] Platinum 15,000double-dagger
Denmark (IFPI Danmark)[274] Gold 10,000double-dagger
France 13,000[275]
Italy (FIMI)[276] Gold 25,000double-dagger
Japan (RIAJ)[201] Gold 100,000^
Mexico (AMPROFON)[277] Platinum 60,000double-dagger
New Zealand (RMNZ)[196] 3× Platinum 45,000double-dagger
Norway (IFPI Norway)[278] Gold 10,000*
Singapore (RIAS)[200] Platinum 10,000*
Spain (PROMUSICAE)[279] Gold 20,000double-dagger
Sweden (GLF)[280] Platinum 40,000double-dagger
United Kingdom (BPI)[193] Platinum 336,000[281]
United States (RIAA)[188] 3× Platinum 2,280,000[282]
Summaries
Worldwide 4,500,000[283]

* Sales figures based on certification alone.
^ Shipments figures based on certification alone.
double-dagger Sales+streaming figures based on certification alone.

Release history

Region Date Format(s) Edition(s) Label(s) Ref.
Various November 10, 2017 Standard Big Machine [203][284]
Japan
Deluxe Universal Music [205]
Brazil November 24, 2017 CD Standard [285]
Various December 1, 2017 Streaming Big Machine [82]
United States December 15, 2017 LP [284]
December 29, 2017 Cassette [286][287]
Various March 9, 2018
  • Digital download
  • streaming
Karaoke [288][289][290]
United States May 18, 2018 CD+G+DVD [291]

See also

Notes

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