Red(Taylor’s Version) – All Too Well (10 Minute Version)

I love Taylor Swift. I am in love with her. I am utterly infatuated by her. She is everything to me, and personally, she is the music industry. If you couldn’t already tell, I am a forever Swiftie (this is what Taylor’s fans are called). I could spend hours GUSHING about Taylor Swift, because I adore her style, her personality, that she is a fellow Sagittarius, her music, just everything that revolves around her, I adore.

Ms. Taylor Swift has decided to undergo the greatest endeavor of all time: re-recording all of her albums, from Taylor Swift to Lover. Why? So that she can own each and every one of her albums (I know, very boss woman move). For me, this is the best idea in the entire universe, since we’ll receive a new interpretation of blondie. But for now, ladies and gentlemen, Taylor gave us the best fall gift of all on November 12th, Red (Taylor’s Version).

I LOVED Red, and I am not exaggerating. Her voice has matured so much, that the emotions feel even rawer than before. It’s as if she conveyed 21-year-old Taylor’s feelings into each re-recording. However, as much I love it, I can’t voice my opinion on all 30 songs, since it would end up being a 30,000 word article, soooo, I am just going to focus on “All Too Well (10 Minute Version).

Taylor Swift is the mother of Easter eggs (which are hidden messages or secrets in songs), so she clearly didn’t ignore the opportunity of enhancing “All Too Well”. The 10-minute version was something that all swifties never knew we needed, but now can’t live without it. So much so, that I cried the first time I heard it, and I am not ashamed to admit it.

It is so unruly and viciously seething, that there is no way Jake Gyllenhaal will ever go past this. Backstory, “All Too Well” is actually about the relationship that happened between Taylor (20) and Jake(29) in 2010, but ended pretty badly. Quite poignantly, it’s about a young woman’s attempt to find retroactive equilibrium in a relationship that was based on a power imbalance that she was not at first able to perceive.

Okay, now with the Easter eggs that she planted in the song. First of all, “’Cause there we are again in the middle of the night/we’re dancing ’round the kitchen in the refrigerator light” – meaning that she and Jake were practically living together. They had created this life together, one in which they would dance all around the kitchen. Taylor was in love, like seriously in love, with Jake, and then he had to come and screw it up.

Then, when Taylor said: “You kept me like a secret, but I kept you like an oath,” my jaw fell to the floor. While she was in love with Jake and paraded him in front of her family, he was almost ashamed of her and suggests that he wasn’t as forthcoming about their relationship as her. To put it simply, he made her feel like she was something that wasn’t worth showing off.

Oh but there’s more. It seems that Jake decided to never tell Taylor that he loved her, until after they broke up: “He’s gonna say it’s love, you never called it what it was/’Til we were dead and gone and buried”. He waited until their love had wilted to try and make it flourish again, but Taylor was never gonna let that happen.

You said if we had been closer in age/Maybe it would have been fine/And that made me want to die,” she writes, finally exposing that their age difference played a role in their breakup. And to top it all off, Jake ruined her 21’st birthday party by never showing up, even though he had promised Taylor he would be there. Taylor’s dad even said, “It’s supposed to be fun… turning 21.”

And of course, as we know Taylor, she saved the best, the ultimate dragging, for the last verse. She literally croons, “And I was never good at telling jokes/But the punchline goes/”I’ll get older, but your lovers stay my age.” Jake, you wanna explain to us why you’re still dating twenty-year-olds even though you’re 40, and how you’re a hypocrite?

But, for all the raw rage that the song clearly conjures, it is at its heart still deeply, deeply sad. The new outro (meaning the one from the 10-minute versions) ends the song on that note, with Swift asking, “Just between us did the love affair maim you all too well?” before recalling once more that sacred prayer the two of them made: “Sacred prayer/I was there, I was there/It was rare, you remember it… All too well.”

Each detail paints a more vivid picture of what Taylor endured, and only adds more lore to a song that is already filled with it. All Too Well (10 Minute Version) comfortably feels like home.

  • Note from Mia: If you haven’t heard Red (Taylor’s Version), go hear it NOW.

Fun! This is a fun article!

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