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'The Black Dog': Taylor Swift Announces Final Variant of Upcoming 'Tortured Poets Department'

For those keeping track, 'The Black Dog' is the fourth variant of the original release.

Source: Zumapress.com/MEGA

Swift has been steadily unveiling the various editions of her upcoming album while on tour.

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If there's one thing you can say about Taylor Swift, she certainly doesn't skimp on offering her fans options. Following the surprise announcement of her 13th album, The Tortured Poets Department, at last month's Grammy Awards, Swift has decided to give us not one but four versions of said album -- or variants, as the official lingo would have it -- all of which will be released on April 19.

On March 4, Swift announced yet another variant, titled The Black Dog.

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Source: Republic Records

Among the many options for Swift's upcoming album is a Collector's Edition Deluxe CD.

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For those keeping track, The Black Dog is the fourth (and final) variant of the original release. Each variant contains 16 tracks with two collaborations ("Fortnight" with Post Malone and "Florida!!!" with Florence and the Machine) as well as a bonus song, which gives each variant its release name. Hence the running order is: The Manuscript, The Bolter, The Albatross and now The Black Dog.

Swift has been on the Australia/Singapore leg of her Eras Tour, and announced these new versions from the stage during the "surprise songs" portion of the show. After two reveals in Sydney and Melbourne, Swift made the last two songs known at her shows at Singapore's National Stadium.

Source: Zumapress.com/MEGA

Swift has been slowly disseminating information about the new releases during her Eras Tour in Australia and Singapore.

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Accordingly, each variant also has several different iterations available, because why not? The options include colored vinyl, cassette, CD and digital download, with physical versions containing a booklet, cards or poster. The chef's kiss to all of this is the Collector's Edition Deluxe CD for each, which houses several artifacts: a booklet, engraved brass bookmark, magnet, cards and collectible artwork. The Manuscript, The Albatross and The Bolter are already sold-out. However, The Black Dog is available until March 6.

There's still, of course, a big question mark concerning the context of the songs. Swift has placed lyric snippets on the back cover of each variant, providing what little insight she might want us to have prior to release.

The Manuscript - "I Love You, It's Ruining My Life"

The Bolter - "You Don't Get To Tell Me About Sad"

The Albatross - "Am I Allowed To Cry?"

The Black Dog - "Old Habits Die Screaming"

Rumors have abounded that the songs are either about or influenced by her time with actor Joe Alwyn, her boyfriend of six years until their breakup in April 2023. Since then it was revealed that Alwyn and fellow thespians Paul Mescal and Andrew Scott were together in a WhatsApp group chat entitled "The Tortured Man Club." True to form, Swift Nation has been decoding that bit of intel endlessly since the album's February 4 announcement, looking for all possible clues to try and develop ever-elaborate theories about Swift's new music.

Swift will be in the middle of the second leg of her Eras Tour when The Tortured Poets Department releases, after which she will finally wrap up her blockbuster jaunt on Dec. 8 in Vancouver.


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