Lana Del Rey – Born To Die: Album Review

January 31, 2012 § 207 Comments

Photo Courtesy of: Interscope Records

Don’t let her failed “Saturday Night Live” performances fool you; Lana Del Rey is one to watch in 2012. The singer has been the center of controversy with people questioning her plump lips to her “manufactured” image and history. The hype over Lana Del Rey was overwhelming.

Media outlets like Pitchfork, Rolling Stone, Stereogum and many more pimped her for months only to frantically type hypocritical reviews that tore the album apart. But Lana Del Rey’s sophomore effort, Born To Die (released on Jan. 30) holds its own without their approval.

Unlike other aforementioned outlets that are so transfixed on the persona, this review focuses on the MUSIC and nothing else.

Here we go.

The self-proclaimed “gangsta Nancy Sinatra” has a sultry 50s vamp vibe mixed with an enigmatic aura that is reflected in her songs. This album serves as a film noir score written by the bone-chilling femme fatale. It opens up with the title track and strongest song: “Born To Die”. It sets the tone for the rest of the album – a ruthless story about dangerous love narrated by a misty-eyed coquette backed by an intense cinematic production.

Following is “Off to the Races” that is voiced by a girl with daddy issues. Her voice teases the listener with high-pitched Betty Boop squeals, begging you to  “kiss me on my open mouth.” The lyrics get even more campy:

“And he grabs me, he has me by my heart.
He doesn’t mind I have a Las Vegas past.
He doesn’t mind I have a L.A crass way about me.
He loves with every beat of his cocaine heart.”

“Blue Jeans”, the first song I heard from the artist, carries on the theme of love but with a twist. Lana Del Rey fully embodies her “gangsta” side as she subtly raps over a drum-heavy beat, a perfect backing for a bloody Tarantino scene.

The song that started it all, “Video Games”, has an epic piano melody that beautifully carries the singer’s painful inflections as she reflects on a love who did not love her. The album version of fan-favorite “Diet Mountain Dew” speeds up the demo and turns into a bouncy trip-hop influenced track that refreshes the ear after the album’s heavy start.

Keep reading…

Music Bite: Lana Del Rey – Tracklist Revealed for “Born To Die”

January 10, 2012 § 1 Comment

Lana Del Rey’s debut album Born To Die is dropping on January 30th. For eager fans like myself, the full tracklist has been revealed to hold us over for the next three weeks.

View it below:

1. Video Games
2. Blue Jeans
3. Born To Die
4. Put The Radio On
5. Million Dollar Man
6. Diet Mountain Dew
7. Summertime Sadness
8. Carmen
9. Off To The Races
10. This Is What Makes Us Girls
11. Lolita
12. National Anthem
13. Without You *
14. Dark Paradise *
15. Hundred Dollar Bill *

*Deluxe Edition

While you’re at it, peep Lana Del Rey’s somber performance of “Video Games” at the Corinthia Hotel in London:

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