(Fun, shocking footnote, by the way: This is Max Martin’s 18th No. 1 hit as a songwriter. With this, the 43-year-old who wrote such pop dominators as “…Baby One More Time” and “Teenage Dream” moves into third place among the Hot 100’s all-time list of writers of No. 1s. The guys in first and second place? Paul McCartney and John Lennon.)
The really striking thing about 1989 is how completely Taylor Swift dominates the album: Martin, Kurstin et al make umpteen highly polished pop records every year, but they’re seldom as clever or as sharp or as perfectly attuned as this, which suggests those qualities were brought to the project by the woman whose name is on the cover.
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