Taylor Swift, titan of pop music, announces new album

August 24, 2017 | 11:32
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Taylor Swift, one of the top-selling pop stars of recent years, on Wednesday announced a new album, Reputation, to be released on November 10.
Singer-songwriter Taylor Swift performs her only full concert of 2016 during the Formula 1 United States Grand Prix at Circuit of The Americas on October 22, 2016 in Austin, Texas. — AFP Photo

The 27-year-old singer, who this week has been sharing cryptic videos of a snake showing its fangs, revealed little else about her sixth studio album but said a first single would come out on Thursday.

She also posted on social media the album’s cover art, with Swift staring forward in front of reels of newsprint in which her name is written ad nauseam.

While Swift has offered no clues about the sound or themes of Reputation, public image has long been one of her favourite topics with lyricism that takes on the perceptions of her in the media.

Swift, who had her start as a teenager strumming her own country songs on guitar, shifted to a more mainstream pop style on her last album, 1989, which came out in 2014 and was named after her birth year.

1989 became the fastest selling album in the United States in a decade, although her sales were dwarfed a year later by English balladeer Adele’s 25 album.

1989 also earned the Grammy for Album of the Year, making Swift the first woman until Adele to win the top music industry prize twice.

Swift was back in the news last week as she triumphed in a lawsuit against a radio DJ in Denver who she said fondled her buttocks during a routine photo opportunity in 2013.

The singer, who has described herself as a feminist, made a donation after the incident to a charity that supports victims of sexual assault.

Despite her poise in going public on her experience, it remains to be seen if her album tackles broader social issues. Swift, whose country roots won her a fan base in conservative parts of the United States, has steered clear of political commentary at a time that many fellow celebrities are bashing US President Donald Trump.

Swift made headlines with 1989 by shunning Spotify, accusing the streaming giant of short-changing artists, although she ended her boycott in July.


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