This Love (Taylor Swift song)

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"This Love"
Song by Taylor Swift
from the album 1989
WrittenOctober 17, 2012 (2012-10-17)
ReleasedOctober 27, 2014 (2014-10-27)
StudioPain in the Art (Nashville)
Genre
Length4:10
LabelBig Machine
Songwriter(s)Taylor Swift
Producer(s)

"This Love" is a song written and recorded by American singer-songwriter Taylor Swift for her fifth studio album, 1989 (2014). Swift produced the song with Nathan Chapman. An atmospheric ballad, "This Love" combines electropop and synth-pop with soft rock elements. Its lyrics use oceanic imagery to describe a faded romance and its subsequent revival. After 1989 was released, the track charted on the Canadian Hot 100 and the Bubbling Under Hot 100 Singles. It was certified platinum by the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) for one million track-equivalent units. In reviews of 1989, some critics highlighted the song's balladic production, while others deemed it out of place for the album's upbeat sound.

A re-recording of the song, titled "This Love (Taylor's Version)", was released on May 6, 2022, via Republic Records. It featured in a trailer for the upcoming Amazon Prime Video television series The Summer I Turned Pretty. "This Love (Taylor's Version)" features an enhanced production quality, exuding indie rock tendencies. The re-recording is part of Swift's plan to re-record her back catalog, following the dispute over the ownership of the masters of her first six albums.

Background and release[edit]

Taylor Swift on the 1989 World Tour in 2015
Swift performing "This Love" on the 1989 World Tour in 2015

Taylor Swift, an American singer-songwriter, had been known as a country artist prior to the release of her fourth studio album, Red (2012).[1][2] Many of the album's tracks incorporate predominantly pop or rock musical styles, a result of Swift's desire to experiment with the genres.[3][4] This prompted a media debate over the validity of her status as a country artist.[5] For her next album, 1989, Swift decided to create a "blatant pop" record and move away from the signature country styles of her previous releases.[6][7] She began writing songs for the album while headlining a world tour in support of Red.[8]

"This Love" was the first song that Swift wrote for 1989.[9] Out of all 13 tracks on the album's standard edition, it was the only one that she wrote on her own.[10] According to 1989's liner notes, she did so on October 17, 2012, when she was in Los Angeles.[11] Swift initially envisioned "This Love" as a "fun, little short poem" for her personal journal; when she came up with a melody in her head, she opted to turn the poem into a song.[12] To this end, she enlisted the help of her long-time collaborator Nathan Chapman, who worked with Swift on all her previous albums, to produce the track with her.[13][11] "This Love" was the only song from 1989 produced by Chapman.[14] The track was recorded at his Pain in the Art Studio in Nashville, Tennessee, and mixed by Serban Ghenea at MixStar Studios in Virginia Beach, Virginia.[11]

1989 was released on October 27, 2014, by Big Machine Records;[15] "This Love" places at number 11 on the album's track list.[16] After 1989's release, Swift included the song on the regular set list for the album's associated world tour, which began on May 5, 2015.[17] The track appeared as background music for a Victoria's Secret holiday advertisement that premiered in December 2015.[18] Swift performed a stripped-down, acoustic version of "This Love" as a "surprise song" on the first Atlanta show of her Reputation Stadium Tour, in 2018.[19]

Music and lyrics[edit]

"This Love" is a midtempo atmospheric ballad.[20] It has a duration of around four minutes and is one of the slowest tracks in the album.[21][22] The song is primarily synth-pop and electropop,[23][24] with elements of soft rock.[25] "This Love" consists of both acoustic and electronic instruments with a slow-burning and melodramatic production.[26][27] It uses double tracking on Swift's vocals.[28] Rob Sheffield, a critic for Rolling Stone, compared the track's sound to that of 1980s power ballads, specifically citing Bon Jovi's "I'll Be There for You" (1989).[21]

The lyrics are about feelings of heartbreak: "Lantern, burning, flickered in my mind for only you / But you were still gone, gone, gone."[29] Swift uses the ocean as a metaphor for a love that disappears and then comes back like the tides.[22] Critics considered it one of 1989's saddest songs.[22][30] Time magazine's Sam Lansky argued that the chorus's catchiness made it more hopeful than anguished.[23] In a 2014 interview with PopCrush, Swift remarked that she frequently listened to "This Love", citing the "romantic and wistful and relaxing" track as one of her favorites on the album.[31]

Critical reception[edit]

Rob Sheffield of Rolling Stone selected "This Love" as one of the three best tracks on 1989, the other two being "How You Get the Girl" and "Clean".[21] In an album review for musicOMH, critic Shane Kimberline lauded it as 1989's best song, emphasizing the chorus and "classic Swiftian" lyrics.[32] Jon Caramanica of The New York Times thought that Swift's songwriting in "This Love" was less detail-oriented compared to her past work;[29] Mikael Wood from the Los Angeles Times took issue with the generic lyrics.[33] Marah Eakin from The A.V. Club considered "This Love" as one of 1989's weaker songs because of its midtempo balladry compared to the album's upbeat production,[20] and Corey Beasley from PopMatters found the atmospheric balladry out of place for the album's overall sound.[34]

Personnel[edit]

Credits are adapted from 1989 album liner notes.[11]

  • Taylor Swift – vocals, background vocals, songwriter, producer, acoustic guitar
  • Nathan Chapman – producer, recording engineer, bass, drums, electric guitar, keyboard
  • Jason Campbell – miscellaneous support
  • John Hanes – engineer
  • Serban Ghenea – mixing

Commercial performance[edit]

"This Love" peaked at number 84 on the Canadian Hot 100 chart dated November 15, 2014.[35] In the United States, it peaked at number 19 on the Billboard Bubbling Under Hot 100 chart.[36] The track was certified platinum by the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA), which denotes one million units consisting of sales and on-demand streaming.[37]

Charts[edit]

2014 weekly chart performance for "This Love"
Chart (2014) Peak
position
Canada (Canadian Hot 100)[35] 84
US Bubbling Under Hot 100 Singles (Billboard)[36] 19
2022 weekly chart performance for "This Love"
Chart (2022) Peak
position
Portugal (AFP)[38] 188

Certification[edit]

Sales certification for "This Love"
Region Certification Certified units/sales
United States (RIAA)[37] Platinum 1,000,000double-dagger

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

"This Love (Taylor's Version)"[edit]

"This Love (Taylor's Version)"
Cover artwork of "This Love (Taylor's Version)"
Promotional single by Taylor Swift
B-side"Wildest Dreams (Taylor's Version)"
ReleasedMay 6, 2022 (2022-05-06)
Genre
Length4:10
LabelRepublic
Songwriter(s)Taylor Swift
Producer(s)
Lyric video
"This Love (Taylor's Version)" on YouTube

A re-recorded version of "This Love", titled "This Love (Taylor's Version)", was released by Swift on May 6, 2022, via Republic Records. The song is part of Swift's re-recording plan following the dispute over the ownership to her older discography's masters.

Background and release[edit]

Following a dispute with Big Machine Records in 2019 over the rights to the masters of her first six studio albums, including 1989, Swift announced her goal to re-record each of these albums. A snippet of "This Love (Taylor's Version)" was featured in the trailer for the 2022 Prime Video original series The Summer I Turned Pretty, released on May 5, 2022.[39] The song was released on digital platforms on May 6.[9] Along with a digital single for "This Love (Taylor's Version)", Swift also released The Old Taylor Collection, merchandise themed to both 1989 and Swift's 2010 album Speak Now.[40]

Composition and reception[edit]

Compared to the original version, "This Love (Taylor's Version)" features strong elements of indie rock, which critics noted as a possible influence of Swift's 2020 indie rock-indebted albums Folklore and Evermore.[12][41] Much of the production remains the same,[42] but the synthesizers are more subdued, and Swift's vocals are less processed, more amplified and resonant.[24][41][43] Mary Siroky of Consequence highlighted the track as a testament to Swift's songwriting ability to "capture the magic, devastation, and fantasy of romance".[42]

Track listing[edit]

Digital download and streaming[44]

  1. "This Love (Taylor's Version)" – 4:10
  2. "Wildest Dreams (Taylor's Version)" – 3:40

Credits and personnel[edit]

Credits are adapted from Tidal.[45]

Charts[edit]

Chart performance for "This Love (Taylor's Version)"
Chart (2022) Peak
position
Australia (ARIA)[46] 23
Canada (Canadian Hot 100)[47] 30
Global 200 (Billboard)[48] 44
Hungary (Single Top 40)[49] 36
Ireland (IRMA)[50] 26
Malaysia (RIM)[51] 5
Malaysia (Billboard)[52] 22
New Zealand (Recorded Music NZ)[53] 40
Philippines (Billboard)[54] 13
Singapore (RIAS)[55] 17
Singapore (Billboard)[56] 22
UK Singles (OCC)[57] 42
US Billboard Hot 100[58] 50
Vietnam (Vietnam Hot 100)[59] 23

Release history[edit]

Release dates and formats for "This Love"
Region Date Format Version Label Ref.
Various May 6, 2022 (2022-05-06) Taylor's Version Republic [44]

References[edit]

Citations[edit]

  1. ^ Caulfield, Keith (October 30, 2012). "Taylor Swift's Red Sells 1.21 Million; Biggest Sales Week for an Album Since 2002". Billboard. Archived from the original on February 1, 2013. Retrieved May 6, 2022.
  2. ^ McNutt 2020, p. 77.
  3. ^ McNutt 2020, pp. 77–78.
  4. ^ Doyle, Patrick (July 15, 2013). "Taylor Swift: 'Floodgates Open' for Next Album". Rolling Stone. Archived from the original on February 25, 2019. Retrieved May 6, 2022.
  5. ^ McNutt 2020, p. 78.
  6. ^ Eells, Josh (September 8, 2014). "The Reinvention of Taylor Swift". Rolling Stone. Archived from the original on August 16, 2018. Retrieved May 6, 2022.
  7. ^ Light, Alan (December 5, 2014). "Billboard Woman of the Year Taylor Swift on Writing Her Own Rules, Not Becoming a Cliche and the Hurdle of Going Pop". Billboard. Archived from the original on December 26, 2014. Retrieved May 6, 2022.
  8. ^ Talbott, Chris (October 13, 2013). "Taylor Swift Talks Next Album, CMAs and Ed Sheeran". Associated Press. Archived from the original on October 26, 2013. Retrieved May 6, 2022.
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  10. ^ Erlewine, Stephen Thomas. "1989 – Taylor Swift". AllMusic. Archived from the original on October 31, 2014. Retrieved May 6, 2022.
  11. ^ a b c d 1989 (CD liner notes). Taylor Swift. Big Machine Records. 2014. BMRBD0500A.{{cite AV media notes}}: CS1 maint: others in cite AV media (notes) (link)
  12. ^ a b Paúl, María Luisa (May 6, 2022). "Taylor Swift Releases 'This Love' in Next Move Toward Owning Her Catalogue". The Washington Post. ISSN 0190-8286. Archived from the original on May 6, 2022. Retrieved May 6, 2022.
  13. ^ Perone 2017, pp. 43–51.
  14. ^ Perone 2017, p. 63.
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  26. ^ McKenna, Brittney (October 31, 2014). "A Track-by-Track Breakdown of What Makes 1989 the Year's Best Pop Album". Mic. Archived from the original on May 10, 2021. Retrieved May 6, 2022.
  27. ^ Sheffield, Rob (October 26, 2021). "All 206 of Taylor Swift's Songs, Ranked". Rolling Stone. Archived from the original on February 15, 2021. Retrieved May 6, 2022.
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  29. ^ a b Caramanica, Jon (October 26, 2014). "A Farewell to Twang". The New York Times. Archived from the original on November 11, 2014. Retrieved May 7, 2022.
  30. ^ Mylrae, Hannah (September 8, 2020). "Every Taylor Swift song ranked in order of greatness". NME. Archived from the original on September 17, 2020. Retrieved May 6, 2022.
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Bibliography[edit]