Lana Del Rey – Born to Die (Deluxe)
Lana Del Rey is not just another pretty face who sings nice, she is a serious artist that has a distinct voice and has something to say.
Sexy, provocative, and soulful the pipes on Lana Del Rey will feel like a blast from the past with a modern twist. Del Rey’s music is heavily influenced from her interest in Cuba that any listener can pick up on when listening to her music. Born to Die is actually Del Rey’s second album, but the first album released under her stage name Lana Del Rey.
Her first album, Lana Del Rey aka Lizzy Grant, was released in 2010 under her birth name Lizzy Grant and has a very different feel and sound to it than Born to Die. Lizzy Grant had a more hopeful, love filled lyrics and is more acoustic which is a harsh contrast to the dark and almost depressing lyrics blended with hip hop beats that spans Born to Die. Whatever spawned the change in Del Rey’s lyrics was clearly life changing in more ways than one.
In terms of the track list on Born to Die (Deluxe) every song has a different feel and slightly different attitude while all still falling under the umbrella category of heartbreak. It is rumored that Del Rey and her boyfriend of the time had broken it off sometime after the release of her first album thus leading to the heart crushing lyrics on Born to Die. With the lyrics being so personal and honest they compliment perfectly with her deep and soulful vocals. Take a listen to the title track “Born to Die” to get a good idea on what I am talking about. I have never heard such control and experimental capability out of any modern woman vocal artist. Del Rey’s vocal talent is outstanding to the point that certain songs almost had me convinced that there must be multiple singers on the album (Off to the Races is a prime example). Personal favorites for me from Born to Die are: “Dark Paradise,” “Summertime Sadness,” This is What Makes Us Girls” and “Off to the Races” (even though I must emphasize again that the whole album is mind blowing).
I picked to review the Deluxe version over the regular version mostly to expose the 3 songs that unique to the album. Two of the three, I enjoy just as much as the rest of the album (which is my favorite of the year so far). The song “Lucky Ones” just doesn’t seem to belong with the rest of the album. It is more of a traditional almost love song and just falls completely flat on its face in my opinion. However, “Lolita” and “Without You” still resemble the rest of Born to Die while still being unique. “Lolita” in particular should really have been featured on the non-deluxe version of the album. The song bleeds sex with its deep beats that are clearly based in Latin roots and lyrics that are dark and sinister like the rest of Born to Die and pairs up nicely with “Carmen” which is on the album.
Dubbed the “self-styled gangsta Nancy Sinatra” Del Rey is certainly a unique woman who may possibly be the most classy sex infused artist out there. Her appearance is classic 50’s turned up a notch or two on the sexified scale and so far in 2 out of 3 music videos has died at the end. Granted, I am concerned that the 25 year old may be a bit mentally unstable but that only makes her more fascinating and entertaining to watch grow as an artist. All that being said, Lana Del Rey is not just another pretty face who sings nice, she is a serious artist that has a distinct voice and has something to say and has no qualms about singing about what’s on her mind.
The whole album can be listened to on repeat without boring of it (trust me, I have been listening to it for a month straight and haven’t lost interest in it yet). Del Rey’s breakout hit “Video Games” is a lusciously sultry song that is a great introduction for the listener that has never heard Lana Del Rey and should (hopefully) get the listener pumped for what the listener will hear on the rest of Born to Die.