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This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at Wisconsin chapter.

Taylor Swift’s tenth album was truly worth the mayhem.

On October 21, 2022, Taylor Swift released her newest album Midnights. The deeply personal album inspired by 13 sleepless nights throughout her life was followed by a surprise seven extra tracks three hours later on Midnights (3 AM Edition). If you are also a member of the Swiftie community, I’m sure you were ecstatic and amazed by this release – Swift constantly puts out new music, with her last album, Red (Taylor’s Version), only released last November.

The synth-filled album brought Swift a step back from the fictitious storytelling and luscious lyricism of folklore and evermore and into her fun, pop days with most songs reminiscent of the critically-acclaimed 1989, the more controversial reputation and its happier follow-up Lover. The added seven tracks on Midnights were ones that Swift decided did not fit the final tracklist. Some of these were her best, so including those, here are my top five songs.

5. Karma

If anyone has wronged you, I recommend blasting this track and wishing karma goes their way. In this fun and upbeat song, a happy Swift sings about her love for karma, as it has kept her in the industry and helped her friends while working  against those who have betrayed and hurt her. The iconic simile in this song is “karma is a cat purring in my lap ‘cause it loves me.”

4. anti-hero

Before the album was released, Swift mentioned that ‘self-loathing’ was one of the things that kept her up at night. In this track, she gets into the specifics of these fears and flaws, referring to herself as “the problem” and comparing her altruistic acts to those of a “congressman.” If it sometimes feels like everyone else is a “sexy baby,” you might truly appreciate this song.

3. you’re on your own, kid

The track five of any Taylor Swift album is a highly regarded staple in Swift’s discography – the song that always seems to express significant emotion and vulnerability. This one is no exception, as Swift sings about growing up and making a name for herself, even looking back on young unrequited love and her struggle with an eating disorder. Not solely on Midnights, this song is a lyrical high point.

2. maroon

The title is fitting for this track, which feels like a more mature shade of her fourth album, Red. Swift sings about drinking cheap rosé, dancing in New York and the ending of a relationship. She also refers to the mark the subject of this song made as a “real f-ing legacy.” The production, lyrics and message of this track have cemented it as one of my favorites.

1. Would’ve, Could’ve, Should’ve

This collaboration with Aaron Dessner has stood out to me since it was released as part of Midnights (3 AM Edition). The song seems to combine themes, lyrics and production from both evermore and Speak Now – a potential follow-up to her scathing track five, “Dear John.” Even if you haven’t danced with the devil at 19, this song is easy to appreciate.

Midnights was an unexpected return to Swift’s pop music days, a shift that has been met with both deep criticism and high praise. The variation in sound and style seems like a result of Swift focusing more on crafting a mosaic of moments through the midnights of her life, rather than a cohesive body of work. These five songs have become my personal favorites, but with such an amazing tracklist, it is no wonder Midnights has already broken multiple streaming records.

Sydney Gray

Wisconsin '25

Hey, I’m Sydney! I’m a current sophomore at UW-Madison. I love reading, iced coffee, and making playlists on Spotify.