Lana Del Rey ‘Born To Die’ Single Review

For those who haven’t already heard, just act like you know that Lana Del Rey is the most important new talent to emerge on the adult contemporary/pop scene.

Her bewitching breakthrough single ‘Video Games’ cast a spell on tastemakers a few months ago and before anyone could finish tweeting about its excellence, the song and equally terrific video had already launched Lana as the underground music scene’s it girl.

The hype was well near fever pitch by the time ‘Video Games’ was released in mid-October. The video had already been passed around for a good three months, capturing the attention of music critics and bloggeurs – and the iTunes pre-orders were steadily pushing it higher up the chart.

‘Video Games’ debuted at #9 on the UK charts and managed to peak as high as #75 in Australia where it had virtually no radio play or promo. The single also became a Top 30 success in Austria, Belgium, France, Germany, the Netherlands, Scotland and Switzerland.

Needless to say, ‘Video Games’ has well and truly set the tone for Lana Del Rey and now that the world’s watching, how will she continue to turn it out?

Check out her follow up single ‘Born To Die’, which is set for a January release:

‘Born To Die’ keeps Lana Del Rey completely on point, flaunting lush orchestral arrangements and downlit vocals. This plays out like a folky country record rendered against a vintage Americana film. Romantic, bittersweet and epic – I would totally walk down the aisle to this. But of course, in true Limoncé style, I’d have to find the perfect chapel to complement my song choice. It’d be a rural Louisiana thing with a bloody long runway so I can gracefully glide through for the entire length of the song.

In true Del Rey fashion, the music keeps the integrity of 50s and 60s records, but upon closer inspection, will always reveal elaborate 21st century production values. There’s a throbbing drum beat pattern that runs underneath the chorus, electronic synth lines that fly over the organic instrumentations, and vocoderised backing vocals murmuring “we’re born to die, we’re born to die” in the finale.

Lana Del Rey makes more of an effort to display her vocal range and textures in ‘Born To Ride’. There are the wilting melancholy verses, that children in generations to come will immediately recognise as a signature Del Rey trait, but there are also the ethereal moments in the chorus where she seductively beckons, “come take a walk on the wild side, let me kiss you hard in the pouring rain… you like your girls insane.”

The 25-year old New Yorker’s sultry and nostalgic style is totally classic but still very much bad ass, like a “gangster Nancy Sinatra“, if you will.


Lana Del Rey will launch ‘Born To Die’ on 23 January and her eagerly anticipated debut album will follow on 30 January.



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