Taylor Swift's rerelease of her album "Speak Now" (Taylor's Version) includes six previously unreleased songs that were written during that era but didn't make it onto the original album. One of these songs, titled "Castles Crumbling," has fans speculating that it was inspired by a difficult period in Taylor's life: her experience at the 2009 MTV Video Music Awards (VMAs), where Kanye West famously stormed the stage during her acceptance speech.
During the incident, Kanye interrupted Taylor's speech for winning Best Female Video and declared that Beyoncé should have won instead. Taylor has spoken about how deeply this incident affected her, particularly because she believed the audience was booing her win. She described it as a moment that burrowed into her psyche and questioned her place in the industry.
The lyrics of "Castles Crumbling" seem to reflect this period of Taylor's life and the aftermath of the VMAs incident. She sings about feeling like her empire has fallen, being held up high only to be brought down, and the loss of faith and support from those around her. The lyrics also mention being screamed at and feeling hated—a reaction that Taylor may have felt after thinking she was being booed by her peers.
Fans on Twitter have connected the dots between the lyrics of "Castles Crumbling" and the VMAs incident, expressing their belief that the song was written about that difficult time. They see parallels between the song's themes and Taylor's emotional state during and after the incident.
However, some fans have a different interpretation. They believe that "Castles Crumbling" is more reflective of Taylor's Reputation era, which occurred after another conflict with Kanye and his wife, Kim Kardashian. During this time, Taylor was publicly vilified and faced a significant backlash.
The lyrics in the second verse of "Castles Crumbling" mention holding grudges, power going to her head, running off loved ones, and sitting alone behind walls of regret. These lyrics align with the themes of Taylor's feud with Kanye and the fallout from the Kimye drama, suggesting that the song may have been written during that era instead.
Fans are divided on whether "Castles Crumbling" accurately represents the VMAs incident or if the song was strategically moved from the Reputation era to Speak Now's vault to avoid it becoming a part of the ongoing narrative surrounding Taylor's conflicts with Kanye.
Some fans are calling for proof from Taylor regarding when she wrote these songs, suggesting that she may be bending the truth. Others find it intriguing how the lyrics of "Castles Crumbling" seem to align with Taylor's future experiences and wonder if she predicted her own future through the song.
Overall, the release of "Castles Crumbling" has sparked speculation and debate among Taylor Swift fans, highlighting the significance and impact of these vault tracks in understanding Taylor's life and mindset during each album era.