Thoughts on Ultra Violence by Lana Del Ray

01Sep15

I have just finished listening to this record for the first time today.  It’s been out for a little while and I really enjoyed her first album, so I was hoping for good things.  Reminder: this is just opinions and first impressions.

Initial reactions:

-This album could have been so much more so far.  Instrumentation is good so far but she’s kinda just relying on that same sultry, mumbled Lana Del Ray style too much.  Just sing like you care a little bit for once.  As my friend JRLu on Twitter put it: “Her voice is an unenthusiastic blowjob.”  Pretty spot on.

-West Coast is the only song I’ve put a thumbs-up on in Google Music.  So far, the rest of this album is just there.

-Money Power Glory is some pretty good stuff.  I have now also liked this song.  The guitar and piano work is pretty awesome, not to mention the unapologetic lyrics.  This song makes me want to see if Lana Del Ray could cover some old Stevie Nicks/Fleetwood Mack or traditional blues/lounge songs.  I’m probably not the first to think this, but it needs to happen.

-Fucked My Way Up to the Top is well done.  Once again, unapologetic, so maybe she should go with that feeling more often.

-Overall Ultraviolence feels like a very, very small step forward for Lana Del Ray.  Some good songs, but pretty much her standard “I’m a sultry, young, seductive singer who pretends not to care” thing from her first record.  Only this album has a lot less hooks and solid tunes.  It ends on a pretty awesome demonstration of her singing (finally!) with That Other Woman.  This is that classic sort of tune I’d like to hear more of.

Definitely worth checking out if you enjoyed the first record, but don’t expect anything to be too far of a departure from what you already know you’ll hear.

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