"Clean" may be Swift's most significant re-recorded song to date. Although the song's origins are in recovering from a bad relationship, it gains new life in the context of her recent masters dispute. Taylor's Version is effortlessly beautiful while staying true to the song’s original emotion.
"New Romantics": Worse
Christopher Rowe created a sleazy club remix of what was originally a perfect song. We're having flashbacks to "Girl At Home (Taylor’s Version)."
"'Slut!'" (Marisa's Version)
Swift has stated that when working on the original album in 2014, she had to choose between "'Slut!'" and "Blank Space," two songs that touch on her experience with slut-shaming.
I can't help but wonder what Swift's career would've been like had she chosen "'Slut!'" over "Blank Space." At a time when public slut-shaming was more prevalent, I think that Swift's decision to approach the issue with a sense of humor was likely a career-boosting one.
In all the places where "Blank Space" is satirical, "'Slut!'" is sincere and vulnerable. This song is one of the most confessional on the album, and it is absolutely captivating.
"Say Don’t Go" (Hamsini's Version)
When I first heard this song, I felt like I'd gone back to 2014. I could hear this song being on the radio back then, which makes it my least favorite vault song. I still like it, but I feel like I've heard songs like it before, and I like those better.
"Say Don’t Go" (Marisa's Version)
I. Love. This. Song. Swift hides vulnerability and heartache under an upbeat chorus. I'll never forget the gut-punch I felt when I first heard the lyrics, "Why'd you have to make me love you? I said, 'I love you,' you say nothin' back."
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"Now That We Don’t Talk" (Hamsini's Version)
The way the verses build to the chorus adds this song to the walking-down-the-street song category. The outro, where she considers that maybe she's better off now that they don't talk, adds the humor that’s sprinkled in several "1989" songs, and overall, it feels like it fits right in.
"Now That We Don’t Talk" (Marisa's Version)
While I enjoy this song, it doesn't stand out to me amongst the other vault tracks. I do, however, think it's one of Swift's most comedic moments. She was so real when she said, "now that we don't talk / I don't have to pretend I like acid rock."
"Suburban Legends" (Hamsini's Version)
The bridge is the best part of this song for me. The first two verses and the chorus are forgettable, but when the bridge kicked in, I was reminded of my favorite Taylor Swift bridges — it's now on the list. Most of the time, I skip to the middle of the song just so I can hear it.
"Is It Over Now?" (Hamsini and Marisa's Version)
The fact that this song was not on the original "1989" is a crime. The song has some of her most scathingly specific lyrics off the vault tracks.
"Did you think I didn’t see you?" Swift sings. "There were flashin' lights / At least I had the decency to keep my nights out of sight."
The song brings back the emotion we loved on the original "1989." Swift doesn't hold back on this track, and it makes it impossible for us to stop listening.
It’s over now.
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