Monday, 5 March 2012

Music Review: Lana Del Rey - Born To Die

"Now my life is sweet like cinnamon,
  like a fucking dream I'm living in.

Baby love me cause I'm playing on the radio."


I was a bit slow to catch on to Lana Del Rey. I'd heard about the single 'Video Games', but never really listened to it until a few weeks ago. I listened to the album in full around 2 weeks ago, and I pretty much haven't listened to anything else since.

"Blue jeans,
  white shirt,
  walked into the room
  you know you made my eyes burn." 

-'Blue Jeans'

Because I'd heard such good things about the album, I went in to the first listen almost expecting to love it, and I did. It isn't the sort of thing I might normally listen to, but that's partly because it's not really like anything I've ever heard before. To put it in a genre is impossible; it's part hip-hop, part orchestral, part indie... to be honest, I'm not even sure how to describe it!

Lana's vocals seem to have a split personality; one side is a seductively low, melancholy drawl, and the other is a sugary falsetto, with plenty in between. The whole album has a very dark, ominous feel to it, almost uncomfortable at times, with the off-beat, poetic lyrics often adding a sense of irony or sarcasm. Listen, and you're automatically transported to downtown New York City, images of red lipstick and bright lights running through your head.

"Red, white, blues in the sky,
  summer's in the air and baby,
  heaven's in your eyes."

-'National Anthem'

I love this album. It's interesting, beautiful, emotional. I can see why it might not be everyone's thing, but it's definitely mine. Some of the songs in the middle of the track list do start to sound a bit same-y and are weaker than the rest, but they all add to the story and dynamic of the album.

"Choose your last words,
  this is the last time.
  Cause you and I...

  we were born to die."

-'Born To Die'

'Off to the Races'
'Blue Jeans'
'Summertime Sadness'

Rating: 4/5