If you were to look up the definition of melancholy in the dictionary, you’d likely find a photo of Lana Del Rey.
Known for her moody “sad-pop” tunes, Lana is back for album four, which seems to have taken on a more energised perspective.
Throughout the album there seems to be a sense of lightness that’s entered Lana’s music and her delivery of it. The same point of view is still there, but it feels like she’s been freed from some of her demons and has a “Lust for Life” as the album title suggests.
Personally I feel like this is Lana’s best body of work since her debut album as the music speaks for itself here. The cinematic and melancholic tunes we’ve all come to love still make their appearances. Songs like ’13 Beaches’ and ‘Change’ are great examples of the dramatic style of Lana’s music.
That being said, irony isn’t lost on Lana Del Rey. On ‘God Bless America – And All The Beautiful Women In It’, which laments all the beautiful people and great things in it, she features gun shots in the chorus alongside angelic harmonies. The girl gets how to make a statement without being directly obvious; it’s political without being overtly so.
Also in the mix are some great pop tunes which is an important part of the lightness here.
‘Lust for Life’ is about as close to radio friendly as I’d ever expect Lana to get. It’s obvious why when you take a look at the writing credits – pop powerhouse Max Martin makes an appearance.
‘White Mustang’ has a similar feel to some of her earlier tracks and this isn’t a bad thing; it’s catchy and is a song to put on while cruising in your car.
Another favourite of mine is Lana’s duet with Stevie Nicks. ‘Beautiful People Beautiful Problems’ is almost the song I’ve been waiting for. The contrast between Lana and Stevie’s voices is inspired and the subject matters suit both of them equally. This is a must listen track if I’ve ever had one.
Ruining a pretty great album are two songs with unnecessary features. Skip past ‘Summer Bummer’ and ‘Groupie Love’ if you want to save yourself a few dollars and a few minutes. I know they are her friends, but sometimes those are the moments you keep for yourself.
Overall I’m glad to hear Lana back at her best. The underwhelming feeling her previous two albums left has been wiped clean and we are left with a real representation of Lana’s point of view.
It’s enjoyable, familiar and light – great pop attributes and something I’m glad to hear from her.
VERDICT : 4/5.
MUST LISTEN : Lust For Life, 13 Beaches, White Mustang, Beautiful People Beautiful Problems.