This month one of the most anticipated album of this year (alongside Lorde’s Melodrama) has come to fruition with the release of Lust For Life. Del Rey has been baiting us for the last few months with a sneak peak at what was in store come July with her first single Love, a departure of the doom and gloom of ill-fated romance, tragedy and betrayal in her previous singles. She quickly followed up with what would be the title track’s single Lust for Life and we even got a sneak peek at songs such as Summer Bummer and Coachella-Woodstock In My Mind. Just these songs alone told us we were in store for a very different album, one filled with more light rather than the darker tones of Born to Die (2012) and Ultraviolence (2014).
A day or so before its official release, someone illegally leaked her album online to her disgust. Lana Del Rey reacted on Twitter in true Del Rey style targeting the offender. (The illegal upload was quickly removed without too much damage.) Del Rey had every reason to be protective of this body of work because Lust For Life might actually be her best release to date. With a slight shift away from the melancholy of her previous releases, Del Rey offers us what many critics are calling ‘purposeful pop’, peppered with social commentary, and an affirmation of basic human values which include love.
I have to put up my hand here by saying I am a full-fledged supporter of Del Rey going back to her rocky start when it seemed every critic loved to hate her, especially after her purported disastrous Saturday Night Live performance of Video Games in 2012. That said, Lust for Life is worthwhile for any new listener to buy into Del Rey’s world of escapism. Staying true to herself, each songs still contain the breathy vocal style I have come to love about her. Furthermore she stays true to the stylistic consistency and atmospheric approach to her previous releases. With enough standout material here on an album 16 tracks long, I am still mesmerized by Love, but I have embraced In My Feelings and Get Free as my favourite tracks (so far).