Lana del Rey delivers another torch-flavored ballad “Honeymoon”, and while as not as catchy as “Summertime Sadness” or nostalgically successful as “Video Games”, it still fulfills the melancholic, hopelessly in-love, Nancy Sinatra-esque aesthetic which (admit it!) we all adore.
With the third album coming, the new track was dropped to the waiting public earlier today to give us the taste of what’s to come, and yes, expect the same old waltzy, velvety melodies that swell and sting just like previous album. I’m saying album because the first album – the one where she was still Lizzie Grant – was was such a different act, it was so rock and roll, complete with a Black Key in the line of production crew. It is so far from what we know her now, that when we look back, her second album (the one with Video Games) which transformed her into what she is now (Gangster Nancy Sinatra [sic]) was accused of being inauthentic.
Then again, in the world of pop music, people can change their stories anytime, and it’s fine. Check out Prince. Or David Bowie.
Now with a handful of successful songs in her pocket featuring that brand of post-modern torch singing, we can now sit back and expect more heart wrenching, fantasy-mingling songs from del Rey – which is what “Honeymoon” is.
Rey was accused of being an incompetent singer once too, but I reckon you can’t point your finger here, as you can hear her rich, raw voice better than ever. It’s also so familiar though, a sweeping, beautiful ballad that echoes faded glamour, red lipstick, danger, coffee and cigarettes – you know, like a Hitchcock movie if it were directed by David Lynch.
The lyrics are all too familiar as well, and many people may have some disappointments with that, because sometimes, it can be too much. That lyrical trope of a woman falling in love with bad boys and following them boys like puppies has appeared so many times in her songs. The melancholia associated with the success of love has been there too. Case in point, “We both know the history of violence that surrounds you / But I’m not scared, there’s nothing to lose now that I found you.” – I feel like her songs sometimes are snippets of a telenovela, you know? And then there comes to that point when you realise it’s Lana del Rey who’s singing and then you just want to say “Lana, you can do better” but that’s just me.
Then again, there is something comforting with the familiar, with the idyllic, with the love that we all want. The dream of cruising along Wilshire Boulevard listening to the blues with the one you love is beautiful and so vivid so can yourself in that scenario, like what Video Games is. The authenticity of the emotion is there and that what makes it tick.
Then of course, that opening line, “We both know that it’s not fashionable to love me but you don’t go cause truly there’s nobody for you but me “, is wonderfully snarky, ha. All these years of haters and now these haters come to love her because, well she’s right, there’s no one else to love in that department. Gangster Nancy Sinatra is Gangster Nancy Sinatra. And so what if her style doesn’t change? She doesn’t need to, when her music comes as sublime and as cinematic as it is.