Taylor Swift’s “I Knew You Were Trouble”: Listen To The Dubstep Track

Taylor Swift took to Good Morning America yesterday to preview “I Knew You Were Trouble,” the newest cut from her upcoming LP Red, and now the full song has premiered. This offering, placed in the context of “We Are Never Ever Getting Back Together,” “Begin Again” and “Red,” suggests that Swift’s album sounds may end up being her most schizophrenic and eclectic to date — and also probably her best.

Written by Swift herself with the help of Max Martin and Shellback — the Swedish songwriting and production duo who also helmed “We Are Never Ever Getting Back Together,” as well as a litany of hits for artists like Britney Spears, Ke$ha and Pink — “I Knew You Were Trouble” sees Swift experimenting, as promised, with a dubstep sound. But the ultimate effect is less Swift aping Skrillex and more a very Taylor Swift interpretation of dubstep: Light, bright and country-inflected, with spunky guitars and Swift’s twangy adlibs pinging like echoes in the bass. Listen to the full song below.

Where Swift’s songwriting usually tends to be driven by highly specific details, here, the chorus is broader: “I knew you were trouble when you walked in/So shame on me now/Flew me to places I’d never been/Now I’m lying on the cold hard ground.” (If Swift had been writing this solo, we would have known the name of the bar that he walked into, the type of plane he flew her in and whether the ground was made of tile, linoleum or concrete — and it all would have happened on a Tuesday.)

The hook isn’t quite as immediate as “We Are Never Ever Getting Back Together,” but Martin’s stamp is still all over “Trouble,” from the bright, sparkly instrumentation to the keen, radio-friendly melody. There might be a little part of us that misses Swift’s very personal and idiosyncratic songcraft, but it’s already clear that it’s elsewhere on the album — and the introduction of these all-star producers into the mix is giving Swift a chance to show that she’s way more versatile than just a girl with a guitar.

What do you think of Taylor’s new track? Tell us in the comments or on Facebook and Twitter, then head over to Directlyrics.com to read the song’s full lyrics.

  • Evan H.

    Don’t you think Taylor Swift is kind of selling out? Before she would write country songs to really connect with her fans. Now she just doing this to blend in with everybody else in the pop music world. I wish artists would just stay true to who they are, instead of following the crowd. What happen to originality?


    Dear E. H.
    Wow, you should be her manager! Look at how poorly she has done to date.
    She sounds just like, uh, like, uh, you know like someone who needs career advice.
    I’m sure you could get her a gig at a wedding.
    What do all those clueless fans like that you know is just wrong?
    And the nerve of the Songwriters Association giving her awards.
    I sure hope she listens to you Kanye, I mean E.H !!!

  • Logan


  • rog

    As long as teenagers have broken hearts, and single, lonely women who have no social life, then the taylor swifts of the world will have songs to write about.

  • Taylor

    I love Taylor Swift!! She’s amazing in my opinon and I would love to sing on stage with her someday! She’s very inspiring and a great role model.

  • Cyd Cyd

    I will always love Taylor Swift even though like a year ago I used to despise her with a passion! But I think that she really is inspriational and a great role model!! Keep on doin’ your thang Taylor!!(:!!

  • :/

    I agree. She is selling out.