Thursday, 15 December 2011
[Official Video] Lana Del Rey - Born To Die
Every year, there always seems to be one artist that everyone except me seems to get. Try as I might to break through into their music, to try and make it 'click', to reach that revelatory moment of musical epiphany, it just never happens.
If anything though, the video for Lana Del Rey's Born To Die aches for that moment of epiphany. Lana stands without doubt as this year's artist built up high on a plateau of hype almost before she's even had a moment to stand. And now, forced to rapidly build foundations of credibility and do away with those nasty rumours about her appearance, she's turned out a creation that twists and tugs at the stomach like a knotted rope.
There's Lana sitting in an insanely opulent church with a couple of tigers, looking for all the world like Empress of the Universe. Maybe that's what she wants to be? An all powerful ruler that dominates above all others. Going by the heaps of hype and acclaim laid at her feet, she's certainly on her way.
Fucking on a car bonnet. Driving in the dark. Kissing while driving. She does it all. Shows you it all. Is she making a statement, or just playing once again into the hands of hype? Born To Die is sexually replete, it exudes sex, basks in it like a lizard on a hot stone. But as any pop star will tell you, sex alone does not make a great song.
Singing in the chorus 'Let me kiss you hard in the pouring rain', Lana's voice tugs at the most primal of urges, the deepest passions of our heart. But for all its 'artistic' merit, for all it does for Lana as a singer, as a song it falls just that little bit short.
Without the video, the track feels even more limp. With the video, it feels like the beginnings of something, but a something that is half-formed, ill-conceived. Parts of it are absolute beauty and brilliance combined, but it takes so long to get going - all foreplay, no final revelation.
It's all almost too much - so rich and overbearing in its opulence. One can only imagine at the majesty Lana could achieve if she toned it down a touch and turned out a sleek, streamlined pop gem. But as it stands, she strides forwards on these magisterial wedges of liquid sex, searching to create a kind of 'classic' before it is even due.
Born To Die is released on the 16th January.