There are very few artists that can sculp a universe of their own. In an interview with RTVE on June 15, 2012 , Del Rey announced she has been working on a new album due in November , and that five tracks have already been written, two of them being ” Will You Still Love Me When I’m No Longer Young and Beautiful “, ” In the Land of Gods and Monsters ” and the other track titled ” I Sing the Body Electric “, which was performed at BBC Radio 1’s Hackney Weekend that month. In an interview with Tim Blackwell for Nova FM in Melbourne, Australia, Del Rey added that her upcoming November release would not be a new album but an EP, which she described as the “Paradise Edition of Born to Die “. On September 25, 2012 , Del Rey released the lead single ” Ride ” with positive reception. The EP was released November 9, 2012 with 8 tracks and one bonus iTunes exclusive track, ” Burning Desire “. Beginning in April 2013, Del Rey embarked on an expansive worldwide concert tour in support of the EP.
Sometimes her repetitions glitch and stutter, like in the video for her psych rock magnum opus ‘Venice Bitch’, which replays found freeway footage until you almost feel like you might be going somewhere. In Sigmund Freud’s 1914 essay ‘Remembering, Repeating and Working-Through’, the psychoanalyst described ‘a compulsion to repeat’ which takes the place of memory. Instead of remembering the past, a patient unconsciously re-creates its conditions. By doing the same thing again and again, we both stave off threatening new experiences and try to drive in reverse, so to speak, moving against the current towards what the death drive ultimately craves: a return to the selfless, pre-birth state. This echoes Del Rey’s once very public wish to be ‘dead already’, which is not the same thing as wanting to die.
On July 14, 2015 , Del Rey uploaded the audio of the song ” Honeymoon “, the title track from the record, on her personal YouTube account. The video shows Del Rey relaxing in the hills of California for approximately 30 seconds, then transitioning into to the lyrics of the song. Despite its early release, ” Honeymoon ” was not available for purchase on iTunes until September 9, 2015 , when it was released as the second promotional single from the record.
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Before becoming a singer, Del Rey wanted to be a poet. As a child, her father wrote country songs for personal enjoyment, while her mother was interested in singing; the former introduced her to The Beach Boys, while the latter was a fan of Carly Simon.
Waiting to meet Lana Del Rey is like waiting to spot a unicorn. Before she arrives at her management’s office – a gorgeous Hollywood house on the cusp of Laurel Canyon that feels exactly like the kind of place she might inhabit, with rich green vines lining its cream exteriors and Grecian pillars – it feels like waiting for a mythical figure to materialise. It wouldn’t be a shock to glance outside and see her lounging by the azure swimming pool, just like one of the starlets she sings of. And as our scheduled interview time creeps back later and later, the anticipation grows ever stronger.
Del Rey has attributed her work to various stage names including Lizzy Grant, Lana Rey Del Mar, 13 Sparkle Jump Rope Queen, 14 and May Jailer. 15 Settling on Lana Del Rey, the singer claims she selected the name because it was beautiful. The first mention of the name Lana Del Rey came from her Spanish-speaking Cuban friends.
She began playing songs in various underground clubs in New York in 2005, and continued writing and performing for the next few years. Her stage name changed many times through this period, beginning with “May Jailer”, evolving into “Lizzy Grant and the Phenomena”, shortly becoming “Sparkle Jump Rope Queen”, and eventually becoming Lizzy Grant. She graduated from Fordham College with a BA in philosophy. Halfway through college, Del Rey received a $10,000 record contract, with the money she rented a $400 a month trailer in New Jersey and began her music career.
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Del Rey released the Grammy-nominated EP, Paradise (2012), to further positive reviews. In 2013, Del Rey ventured into film as she wrote, directed and starred in the short music film, Tropico (2013), and released ” Young and Beautiful “, the theme for The Great Gatsby (2013). Del Rey subsequently issued her sophomore major-label effort, Ultraviolence (2014), to similar success as it topped the charts and spawned the hit single, ” West Coast “. That same year, Del Rey recorded the eponymous theme for Big Eyes (2014), which garnered her both a Grammy and Golden Globe nomination. Since then, Del Rey has released Honeymoon (2015) and Lust for Life (2017), the latter of which topped the charts in numerous countries and was nominated for the Grammy Award for Best Pop Vocal Album.
There followed a torrent of online vitriol that seemed disproportionate even at the time. The Guardian ran a think-piece that feels, seven years later, like cracking open a time capsule: some people feel victims of an immense confidence trick… a few critics began to wonder if… the transformation from Grant to Del Rey had been planned all along”. The authenticity debate has always been a big part of pop, but as impenetrable megastars have once again come to dominate the industry, we seem to be getting over it: now, when we talk about authenticity, we tend to talk about authentic engagement with a brand instead.
LDR recently released a double music video for The Greatest” and Fuck It I Love You,” as well as a cinematic visual for her cover of Sublime’s Doin’ Time.” She’ll set out on tour in North America and Europe starting on Sept. 21.
While chatting with Norman Fucking Rockwell! producer Jack Antonoff about the recording process, Del Rey switched course to gush about how inspiring Grande was.
But Honeymoon is nowhere near as bleak as Ultraviolence. On her third record, Del Rey writes about characters who are less in the thrall of terrible men and more in the business of using and manipulating them. It feels more like Del Rey naturally moving on to focusing on people for whom freedom equals loneliness. On the album’s title track, she sings to a man so elusive and so ill-defined that he barely exists; on the David Bowie-interpolating Terrence Loves You,” she mourns a lover who died, rather than one who loved and left her. The album features many complex, abstract visions of loneliness, and even though Del Rey abandoned the topic afterwards, Honeymoon still stands as a nuanced and resonant record on its own.
Lust For Life brings the first portion of Del Rey’s career full circle. It‘s a demarcated ending of an album that fine-tunes half-baked ideas from earlier records and introduces new themes that would be expanded upon later. Opening with the serene, warm Love,” Lust For Life presents a wiser and calmer Del Rey, and given the way the record is sequenced, you could think of it as a concept album: in its early third, Del Rey deals with anxieties around her own fame (13 Beaches”) and romantic life (White Mustang”) before finding herself paralysed by fear of the changing political landscape (Coachella,” When The World Was At War”). During the final stretch — which contains some of the most interesting songs of Del Rey’s career — she finds peace, and makes a commitment to resistance against a rising right-wing tide.
Starting in December 2015 , Del Rey began announcing festival performance dates across Europe, Canada, the United States, and Mexico to further promote Honeymoon , despite there being no official concert tour to support the album. 3 She performed at these festivals throughout the summer of 2016.
Whiley, Jo (February 2, 2012). “Interview with Lana Del Rey” BBC Radio 2. BBC Archived from the original on October 17, 2013. Retrieved June 20, 2012.
2010 brought the alter-ego Lana Del Rey and her debut album, alternatively spelled Lana Del Ray”. The album was released in January 2010 although was soon pulled from the shelves by the singer who didn’t believe the label were doing enough to publicise it.
That ending of Lust For Life leads neatly into a period of increasing politicisisation in Del Rey’s music. This week, the singer’s long-running fables are extended with Norman Fucking Rockwell, a record that continues her tilt into political music. Where Del Rey once used America as a kind of fantastical symbol for capitalism and power, NFR’s early singles — among them Venice Bitch,” Hope Is A Dangerous Thing For A Woman Like Me To Have – But I Have It,” and The Greatest” — find the musician reckoning with the realities of modern-day America. The culture was lit, and I had a ball,” she sings on The Greatest,” seemingly saying goodbye to the world amidst global turmoil.
All of this made Lana Del Rey’s decision to join the Charlie‘s Angels title song a no-brainer. Listen to Lana Del Rey now. The singer and songwriter’s fifth major-label album, Norman ____ Rockwell!,” is a collaboration with Jack Antonoff packed with fiery lyrics.
Norman Fucking Rockwell! proves (again) Del Rey as a fully-realized artist who has remained true to her obsessions — aesthetic, cultural, and personal — outlasting the misogynist criticisms that could have derailed her early career. Del Rey delivers a gaze that swivels internally and externally, that can simultaneously observe our national existential dread and her own sudden hope for a Hallmark” love.