Not only has Taylor Swift given us an entire new album to brighten our pandemic quarantine, but she dropped a whopping 17 videos Thursday (July 23) night to accompany folklore. One, “Cardigan,” is an official music video, while the other 16 are lyric videos for every track on her eighth album.
The clip for album opener “The 1” features water rippling over coins in a fountain, each one presumably imprinted with a different person’s wish. The “Betty” lyric video is a slow tracking shot along an empty autumnal sidewalk next to a field, with the lyric very lightly superimposed over the image. The lyric video for “The Last Great American Dynasty” displays waves peacefully rolling in an empty ocean beach, while the lyric video for “Cardigan” — which is separate from the official “Cardigan” music video — is a bird’s eye view of ocean waves hitting the shore. The “Mirrorball” clip, unsurprisingly, shows a rotating disco ball refracting light, which is perhaps Swift’s way of saying she, too, is excited for Kylie Minogue’s upcoming disco LP. There’s more water in the “Ricochet My Tears” clip, which finds moonlight reflecting on a calm body of water at night. The “Seven” lyric video shows the sun pouring into a wooded area as grass slowly moves in the breeze, and “August” similarly falls into the genre of Tall Grasses Swaying Gracefully In the Wind. As for her Bon Iver collab “Exile,” we see a bird’s eye view of a solitary person walking along a dirt road in a forest (pandemic appropriate!).
The “This Is Me Trying” video shows what looks like an empty drive-in, with the song’s lyrics appearing on the blank white screen. The “Illicit Affairs” lyric video is a darkly lit shot of rain falling on a road, almost Twin Peaks-esque. “Invisible String” goes to empyrean heights, drifting high above the clouds in a yellow-pink sky; “Epiphany,” on the other hand, finds us looking up into the heavens from the ground, watching the clouds roll by. There are more clouds in the “Peace” lyric video, but it’s less rosy and more dramatic, with a chiaroscuro effect showing strong contrasts between the bright and the black parts of the sky. For “Hoax,” we’re back to the ocean, only it’s not as peaceful as before – angry waves crash upon the rocks from a bird’s eye perspective. And speaking of angry, “Mad Woman” is fittingly augmented by slow motion flames against a black backdrop.
Watch them all below.