i agree, i think the only way that it goes truly wrong is her not evolving enough here, because every time she’s done something a bit different it’s worked out imo, breaking out of the trilogy should be a noticeable growth.
i’m really bad at wording this stuff but i’m hoping for her to maintain the more organic sound of 21 and avoid basic pop altogether (i.e. no album of SMLs) while pushing some more alt/rock/country infusions we’ve already seen here and there in her discography thus far. plus branching out in themes, i think there’s a way to take on “bigger” subjects while simultaneously including the emotional insights that have populated her work normally to make something both timely and timeless.
just no more breakup dirges, pls. it didn’t make much sense with 25 and it really doesn’t make sense now. she literally could make anything from a stomping anthem to a ballad that speaks to as many people in a way completely different than sly… i just don’t want any cop outs, i really enjoyed 25 but i feel like there’s still room to do so much more on future records