FIB Album Review: Lana Del Rey’s ‘Lust For Life’

You can all stop crying now because Lana Del Rey’s album Lust For Life is finally here and yes, it is as good as you thought it would be.

Lana Del Rey’s Lust For Life Album Cover

Those smooth AF vocals have returned to glisten your ears once more. Five studio albums later and Lana has brought a couple of friends along for the ride, like The Weeknd, A$AP Rocky and Playboi Carti. The album has had fans eagerly anticipating its release and now that it’s here, we can confidently say that it’s met our expectations.

Lead single and opening track from the album, ‘Love’ is a down-tempo rock influenced ballad that portrays how you can start feeling crazy and nihilistic but still be comforted by the feeling of being in love. Sweet with a hint of fragility, ‘Love’ evokes a sense of doomed lovers while Lana’s voice makes it all seem so relatable.

Photo Credit: Sebastian Denali

This album is definitely a little less badass/retro hip-hop than some of her previous works. Her music is the kind of sound you don’t expect to hear on the radio and with that kind of uniqueness comes the high expectation for something new each time.

Her newest songs are another series of slow moving, sleek sounds which tell a story of venturing towards happiness in a world shadowed in darkness. Compared to her previous albums where she seemed to be struggling to cope with negative relationships and feelings of dread, it is a nice change up. Her new outlook is represented by her cheery smile on the album cover; quite a radical change from her badass, glowing pout that we all know and love.

Photo credit: Getty/Alberto E. Rodriguez

Aside from this though, her sound remains edgy with songs like ‘Summer Bummer’ and ‘In My Feelings’.  She combines a bit of hip-hop/trap in with her delicate melody in addition to some verses from A$AP Rocky and Playboi Carti, it just gets better and better. But she somehow manages to contrast that edgy, trap beat with softer, more gentle sound with songs like ‘God Bless America – And All The Beautiful People In It’.

Similarly, ‘Coachella – Woodstock in My Mind” continues the nostalgia fuelled dreamy vibe of a different and freer era, while the Sean Ono Lennon produced and featured track, “Tomorrow Never Came” echoes the Beatles’ ‘Across the Universe’ musically while name dropping John Lennon and Yoko Ono. To go along with the idealistic portrayal of the past, this is the first record where Lana gets even mildly political, especially on the anxiety infused ‘When the World Was at War We Kept Dancing’ in which Lana worries about the fate of America over a guitar line. Our only criticism, shorten your track names, Lana!

Image credit: Vmagazine

Meanwhile, Lana litters the album with references to her previous work and icons of Hollywood (duh.) ‘Cherry’ quotes Simon and Garfunkel while the lyric “Topanga’s hot today, Manson’s in the air” from ‘Heroin’ hits three of Lana’s favourite tropes and references, Old Hollywood, murder and Charles Manson. ‘Get Free’ repeats a lyric (‘I’ve got war in my mind’) from 2012’s ‘Ride’. While the Stevie Nicks featuring track ‘Beautiful People, Beautiful Problems’ not only stunning encapsulates Lana’s whole aesthetic in the title but also calls back to the track that made Lana famous with the lyric “It’s more than just a video game”.

All in all, Lana is staying true to her sound and doing what she does best. She allows for her music to progress in a way that ensures fresh, new releases but still staying true to the sound we all know and love.  If it ain’t broke don’t fix it, right? Though, each album she still seems to be taking it up a notch. Her magical persona merely adds to the Lana experience and you just can’t help but fall in love with her silky voice.

While Lana seems most content when she is touching base with her nostalgic roots and blues, this record brings out her ability to push through the big riffs of 2013’s Ultraviolence and instead into a new era of soul searching with warm melodies and beautiful poetry. Lana look back even as her music moves forward and final track ‘Get free’ ends on a sweet and optimistic note.

To hear Lana Del Rey’s latest album, Lust For Life, see the record below.