“The Great War” by Taylor Swift
Generally speaking, “the Great War” is a term that is utilized in reference to World War I (also known as the First World War).
That is something that Taylor Swift undoubtedly knows, as it has been gleaned, at least by some analysts, that this song’s lyricism was inspired by WWI.
Lyrics of “The Great War”
Outside of the term “Great War”, there aren’t any references pointing directly to that conflict. So a more reasonable explanation of this piece, as far as its motif goes, is the lyricism being inspired by actual warfare itself.
But of course, we wouldn’t expect Swift to actually drop a song about armed conflict. So as with most of her pieces, this one has a romantic basis, i.e. the addressee apparently being the vocalist’s lover. And to make a long story short, in this case Taylor takes responsibility for being the toxic partner in the equation.
What is being inferred is that she has carried the baggage from past romantic relationships into this one. Or theoretically explained otherwise, let’s say that previous romances have made the vocalist distrustful, and resultantly she went on to unfairly accuse her current partner of ‘betrayal’ – and giving him hell accordingly.
But as time progressed, Taylor came to realize that she is the antagonist in this war, so to speak. And she also understands that in the process of wildin’ out, she has now caused what can be deemed unforgettable damage to the relationship.
That said, this narrative does end on a positive note. That is to say that learning a lesson from her folly, the vocalist has now become more trustful of her partner. Furthermore, she also perceives that the hardship they went through has made their union stronger.
So after spazzing if you will, on top of her lover being able to survive the attack, now the narrator feels secure enough to pledge her lifelong allegiance to the addressee.
Release of “The Great War”
“The Great War” did come out on 21 October 2022 with Taylor Swift’s “Midnights”. That being said, it is not part of the album’s standard playlist. Instead it is included with the “3am Edition” of the LP. This edition consists of seven bonus tracks added to the project which were only made available digitally.
This is one of only a handful of songs on “Midnights” in which Aaron Dessner participated. He co-wrote and co-produced “The Great War” with Taylor Swift.
Dessner, who is perhaps best known as a member of The National, also participated on Swift’s four previous albums, 2020’s “Folklore” and “Evermore”, as well as the 2021 re-recordings of her hit album titled “Fearless and Red”.
And as with those projects, this one was also put out through Republic Records.
What Fans are saying
According to a teenage Swiftie, she is inspired by Taylor and always feels understood when she listens to her songs, in particular “The Great War”.
Another fan expressed how when she figured what the lyrics meant, she felt this sense of serenity and happiness throughout her body. To her, this song has allowed her to heal her broken pieces from her past romantic relationships.
Many a Swiftie has praised this writing collaboration with Aaron Dessner, referring to it as a poetic and deep piece.