Taylor Swift, New And Old, Returns To 'Saturday Night Live' : All Songs Considered Across two performances the pop star presented two, not entirely conflicting, personas — the one she's currently cultivating and the one she's harvested for years.
NPR logo Taylor Swift, New And Old, Returns To 'Saturday Night Live'

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Taylor Swift, New And Old, Returns To 'Saturday Night Live'

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A long way off from her once-signature curls and guitar, Taylor Swift showed both her still-in-progress, grown-and-sexy and her acoustic confessional sides in two Saturday Night Live performances last night (Nov. 11).

Red lasers, smoke and choreographed hip gyrations accompanied Tay's performance of " ...Ready For It?," the second single from her latest album Reputation. Like the song's music video, Taylor donned an all-black athleisure 'fit, thick black eyeliner, singing into a bedazzled snake microphone. As Ann Powers wrote of Swift and her Reputation-era persona, "the direct invocations of black pop on Reputation are many and obvious."

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For her second song, Taylor got back to her roots by singing "Call It What You Want," seated with an acoustic guitar. (She still gave a nod to the snakes though, wearing a Gucci sweater emblazoned with a red and white snake logo and smirking at her own lyrics.)

It was Swift's first appearance on Saturday Night Live since 2009 and the singer's first public performance of any song off the new album.

Swift's sixth studio album, which dropped Friday, Nov. 10, is already setting records. Nielsen Music reports that Reputation sold around 700,000 copies in the U.S. its day of release, with first-week sales predicted to surpass one million units. That would propel Taylor to the top of the charts once again and make it the best-selling album of 2017 — besting bestie Ed Sheeran.