Lana Del Rey - Born To Die

Wherever it is you fall on the LDR internet-sympathy spectrum — be it “with great cosmetic enhancement comes great responsibility,” or Chris Crocker-styled LEAVE LANA ALONE, or its comment-section counterpart LEAVE ME ALONE, LANA — we can all stipulate that Lizzy Wright is enjoying the shit out of all this. Case in point: this “Official Audio” video for the (quite good) LP title track in which she is topless and embracing a tattooed dude in front of a rippling American flag, which is itself a placeholder for the real video that stars an actual tiger. This is your world, 2011.com, and topless vs. tiger seems a pretty weirdly symbolic distillation of the conflicts within it. This video doesn’t change a thing about its look (or probably what you think of Lana Del Rey), but it is a) effective meme propagation that is b) set to a legitimately well conceived and executed sultry-symphonic pop song and c) thereby embedded below. Not really NSFW, unless you work with the 60% of people who hate-comment on LDR posts, in which case be prepared to debate your position on this IRL when they can’t help but watch over your shoulder:


Born To Die is due 1/31 on Interscope. The tiger video will be out soon. I hear the tiger will be topless in it as well.

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Comments (69)
  1. Marissa Nadler and Gorilla Vs. Bear going at it over this video: http://www.facebook.com/gorillavsbear/posts/298253233538839

    • That is great. Marissa = real talk. I respect everything she says, considering I’d rather be seeing the same amount of content on her many, many great albums and songs as we do Lana Del Rey’s 3 or 4 off an album that hasn’t even been released yet.

    • For someone who spends so much time touring, I’m surprised she seems so naive about how much exposure can be bought. It feels like she’s really just upset that the media she thinks is on the side of good “independent” hard working artists are really just as susceptible to the same buzz-garbage as everyone else. Which they’ve always been, really. And half those “independent artists” are repped by major $$$ as much as LDR is. I dunno. She has every right to be upset, she’s a better songwriter and musician. But I’m surprised – she’s not as cynical as I would have expected her to be.

    • Does anyone have a screenshot of what Marissa said, or can paraphrase? I think she deleted her original comment about LDR in that thread.

      • Nah, but she said some stuff about her botox lips. I think all the anti-semetic comments were deleted too. Too bad, it was a hilarious classic internet exchange.

      • She was mostly just upset that Lana Del Rey gets praise as a “songwriter” even though she has a team of writers and producers who do a bulk of the work for her, while she’s just the face on the song. She also said something along the lines that plastic surgery isn’t something she admires just to fit into a particular mold of American beauty to sell music.

      • This comment by the young lady Marissa was debating with made me laugh:

        Nicole (name censored) Wow – so I just got a private message from that Marissa yelling at me for blocking her and telling me to go fuck myself. Listen crazy person, no one blocked you and maybe you should consider trying sanity on for size. Good luck with that.
        40 minutes ago

        • “marissanadler Marissa Nadler
          I have deleted all comments because I realize it won’t go anywhere. I am getting anti-semetic attack emails and scary shit. I’m out.
          49 minutes ago

          marissanadler Marissa Nadler
          @mutual_benefit – I’m sorry i had to delete all of the comments. I was in tears by the end of it and really upset at the attacks.

          marissanadler Marissa Nadler
          @dada_drummer – deleted. I can’t handle the negative comments coming my way. I’m too sensitive and I don’t have anyone to protect me.”

          Poor Marissa. Oh, Internet — You’re so stupid most of the time.

          • funny Marissa Nadler story that kind of relates: i had a friend in college who was a pretty good songwriter, but thought he was an amazing songwriter. he went to a Marissa Nadler show one night i think only to talk shit to her.

            he and a couple friends saw her outside and he goes to her, “I heard your last album, it was pretty good.” and she was all “Pretty good!? Just pretty good!?” before she stormed off with indignation.

            just goes to show that no matter where you lie on the authenticity spectrum there will always be some annoying person underneath you talking trash.

  2. It’s becoming very apparent to me that her vocal range / style is limited and one-note with this — another mumbly, Nancy Sinatra pouty lipped take. She’s the blogosphere’s answer to the X Factor‘s Drew, and it’s time we send her away just like they did Drew last night.

    • I see Michael continues to criticize LDR despite consistently being almost the quickest to comment on everything posted about her. You know what they say about protesting too much.
      LDR has been quoted in interviews saying she’s involved in the song-writing process, so whether you choose to believe that or not is up to you.
      The reality is the most common criticisms/arguments against her are:
      – indie vs. non-indie
      – songwriter vs. “manufactured”
      – enhancements
      The reality OF those criticisms/arguments is that most people don’t really care, and her success is not dependant on those things.

      Here’s what we know, in terms of “Lana Del Rey” the artist/performer:
      – her image perfectly suits the music
      – the average music listener finds her music appealing

      Here’s what I think: aesthetically she’s a new Lily Allen – internet star, often criticized about her looks, takes credit for writing, probably little lasting power.

      Her voice is strong live, the unfamiliar material has promise, but her stage-presence is excruciating; she’s not a natural performer and isn’t remotely close to knowing who she is onstage. But that’s the world we live in; where overnight successes are actually literal. Her chances at stardom would be increased if she dressed in flow-y gowns, changed her lyrics and became a new Enya, as her music isn’t too far from that already.

      • I can’t help that I follow Stereogum on Twitter and see whenever they put up a new post, which then allows me to be among the first to comment. (I’m guessing djfreshie does the same?) As a humble commenter, I’ll continue to politely voice my displeasure about her because I in sincerity don’t believe she deserves the acclaim. I’m also in the midst of writing up my “Best and Worst of Everything Else in 2011″ piece for my site, which includes a “Most Overhyped New Artist.” Normally, I don’t like to use my blog as a vehicle to really go after anyone I don’t care for — I just ignore it all together — but this is the one post I allow myself to. Those will probably be my final words on Lana, and then I’ll leave it alone.

        And I actually don’t know what they say about protesting too much.

        • Wrong, I live inside this box you call a “com-pee-oo-tur” and the comments I leave are actually my voice. I speak Calibri font, but I’m also fluent in Verdana and i do a workable Century Gothic.

        • I agree with this man. I want her coverage at places I like to frequent to go away…including here. We can’t always get what we want, but we are internet commenter and we will voice our displeasure!

      • The white knight has spoketh…

  3. I was kinda hoping this dude was gonna drop dong :(

  4. Lana Del…Ray? Should I have heard of this person before?

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  6. Ugh! She’s like the Avril Lavigne of indie, so phony. Why are people making her relevant?

  7. she changed that awesome line “fuck you hard” or whatever :( girl better bring it in the video because i’m not feeling this.

  8. If I wanted to watch a video of two people hugging, it’d be this one: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Kl1rRxG251s

  9. Such an awkward hug.

  10. I kind of see both sides of this. I can obviously see why legit artists would be less than enthused about the pub LDR is getting. But there’s a part of me thinking everyone should just relax. Her lack of input in any part of the creative process on these songs is duly noted; yet, clearly, people out there like the songs and shouldn’t be anything wrong with admitting you like something (I find them sort of meh).

    It’s easy for me to have the following opinion because I don’t write music and I’m not living out of a van and touring the country on my own dime, so I have no connection or understanding of the cost in having your music heard and respected. But I feel like this “indy cred” argument surrounding her songs is just kind of pointless. It’s not what she is so who cares? Like the songs if you like the songs. Don’t listen to them if you don’t. And stop trying to change the minds of the people you don’t agree with because no one ever changes their mind. Ever.

    • From a song perspective you’re absolutely right – a song is a song. I don’t have to like Dolly Parton to know Jolene is a wicked song. It stands alone.

      But that’s the other side of the coin, I guess, is that we can pick and choose the artists we decide to latch on to. So while I can admit I really like Video Games as a song, I can also say I think she seems like a really phony, expensively backed artist. I can let that play as I like, as a consumer of music.

      Not to mention that overexposure can make anyone particularly hesitant about something that doesn’t seem to have a lot of inherit value. Good song or not, Video Games is just a good song. She’s not breaking any new ground in music, and she’s no musical phenom. It’s just a nice pretty song. All the press she’s getting is pretty annoying for anyone that pays a lot of attention to the media. When your primary sources of music information suddenly start plugging away at something mediocre, it will give you pause. Then again…it’s also a story. It’s news. Same way it’s frustrating when my primary sources of information waste precious minutes on Casey Anthony or even worse, a Kardashian fake wedding instead of on a Casino disaster in Mexico.

      Anyways, to answer your question of “who cares”: anyone with a vested interest in the purity of information.

      • It’s comforting to read that we’re on the same page with this Lana Del Ray phenomena to the extent that we’re both willing to criticize it in — what appears to some commenters here – an annoying, excessive amount. But then again, Lana Del Rey as you said is pushed onto us in an annoying, excessive amount, so it’s well warranted and almost invited at this stage. I don’t like being the person who looks for a reason to do this, either. I could ignore the news, but when it’s staring at me on a daily basis as the top story, I’d rather state my gripe with it than sit back and let it happen.

        Please post stories about Ceremony in 2012, Stereogum to make up for the Lana Del Rey oversaturation I’ve had to sift through this year.

        • I think its wise to take either that stance or ignore it entirely. I do not actively watch TV news or read Newspapers anymore (unless you count Stewart Colbert as ‘news’) because I know its paid for by advertising now. There was a story last night on how they turned the Maple Leaf Gardens (The leafs’ old hockey rink -essentially a heritage site) into a Loblaws (Canadian grocery chain)

          The reporter called it “brilliant.” I don’t know about you, but to me when you call a large corporate business decision brilliant, you stop being news. At the very least, the bias in most major reporting is clear as day. So I don’t watch. it only serves to make me upset about the direction they’ve chosen. And partly due to their financial constraints, I’m sure, but nonetheless, I don’t care for it.

          Same goes for the internet – I mean, you can gripe about it all you like, but it won’t change anything. That’s a guarantee. The best options are to give up on something as soon as you find the information is corrupt; continue digesting the information as long as you can rationalize it; or create an alternative.

      • And I totally see that side of the argument as well. I feel like I woke up one day and Lana Del Rey’s name was everywhere, and I’m going out on a limb and guessing you felt this way too. And it very much DID feel phony-bologna. Heavy handed (and funded) music business types are starting to find a profit value in the indy scene again. Everyone, I’m sure, has their own theories as to why (my two cents: there is no longer a stigma attached to independent artists who allow companies to use their songs for commercials, thus there is, among other obvious venues, a great opportunity to get the music “out there”). Either way, I’ve had the same bad taste in my mouth about her as others have for that same reason, and maybe I haven’t enjoyed the songs because of it. I don’t know.

        I just find, as I get older, these sort of ideals and arguments exhaust me. It’s like, what are we really going to do at the end of the day? Your news analogy was perfect. But where I used to really be bothered by the real stories getting buried, I’m starting to just brush these things off as “the way it is.” And that could have a lot to do with the fact that I’ve completely removed myself from the journalism career. And maybe this attitude is ultimately part of the “problem.” I don’t know. All I know is my life is a lot nicer now that I can allow the LDRs of the world to just pass by me without harm or foul.

        • I think you can take certain weights into account. I work in music, and I can tell you that things aren’t great, and are in the process of changing, and the decisions that consumers make now can only serve to help things get better (for the people you want to get better.) what I mean is, the consumer is king right now. (and my personal opinion is that right now the consumer is a fucking retard and is ruining a great opportunity to make the industry a better place. Take it or leave it)

          But then again…music news isn’t news. It affects some people…it affects me but at the end of the day, the corruption of entertainment media (which has been there since the 20s, BTW so it’s not new) is not really a priority. I completely understand brushing it off.

          The corruption in real news is probably something worth getting genuinely upset about. And that’s been there for years too, but man is it really bad right now.

    • I was left wondering how her songwriters feels, not getting any credit for writing her songs, but then I remembered they’re probably too busy deciding what to spend their money on. As a former touring band member/singer/songwriter myself, I can fully understand the anger these produced “artists” get, but then again I bought La Roux’s album, soooo yeah. Like what you like, and do what you like. She, like many others, will fade.

  11. she sounds so squeaky live, like she’s singing tru her nose. is that what everyone calls” she’s awesome live” ???

  12. i’ve heard that Lana Del Ray achieved the perfect pouty lip face by rubbing Alwadi hummus (Lebanese produced) on her lips each morning when she wakes up and in the evening when she goes to sleep. She does not mess around. Entry level hummus is for bands like Tame Impala.

  13. That’s my new least favourite of her songs, and I didn’t even get any decent sideboob for sitting through it!

  14. Lana, whatever, but dude, that guy has some seriously Failblog worthy tattoos going on. She must have been counting the seconds till she could stop hugging him. I think of this like Thom Yorke in Radiohead’s “No Surprises” video.

    • I feel like it’s the same 20-second or so clip cycled throughout the video. Watch how she closes her eyes. Only adds to how gimmicky to this video is. This is the most manufactured thing she has done yet.

      • It is. It’s easy to tell if you just watch the flag in the background — it billows one way, pauses, then reverses direction.

        I don’t blame them though. Four minutes is an awkward naked hug.

    • 20 years from now, tattoo bro is gonna wake up and realize that he looks like a complete buffoon. for his sake, i hope that he’ll fondly remember those great few years when he covered his body with entirely meaningless tats to give off the impression to others that he *might* be in a band. sadly, this is an inevitable reality for millions of people my age.

      at least he got a boob hug out of it.

  15. What is so Phony about waking up one day and someone’s name is everywhere? IF you follow any of the hypeblog scene shit you know that happens fucking lots. So much its made fun of on Hipster Runoff.

    Just because this hype blogged artist happens to be fake doesn’t change the fact that the hyped indie artist has existed for a long while.

  16. Personally I don’t get the passion that this girl instills in people at all, positive or negative. I do think she’s probably full of shit, but lots of “artists” are. It’s easy to pick and choose who you want to listen to though. I give Lana Del Rey roughly the same amount of attention I would give someone like Katy Perry – none, except for the occasional bemused comment when she shows up on my radar.

  17. How people react to Lana Del Ray will never stop being absolutely hilarious to me.

  18. I get the feeling people like to imagine that Lana Del Ray critics spend an inordinate amount of time hating her, building wicker figures of her to burn or something. For me (and I am guessing for most people not on the Lana Del Ray boat) it’s more of a definitive but passing “fuck this.”

  19. i think we can all (every one of us) agree that the only good thing about this song was when she said “fuck me in the pouring rain,” or whatever, and now it’s changed to something lame. Glad we all agree.

  20. this video is just… “…what?” it’s like a 10 second loop reversed and repeated over and over again. even if the official video is coming out later, this is just not a good representation for a musician. and the song is boring as shit. lana del lame needs to go back to a modeling career.

  21. what look is that on her cover art? corporate/amish/hoodrat?

  22. Pop music in the now is about creating characters as much as anything … Lana et al get that.

  23. To find out when/if the Lana’s album leaks: http://hasitleaked.com/2011/lana-del-rey-born-to-die/

  24. It’s not bad but nothing special. I’ll check out the album when it comes out. I like this Born To Die better, and it’s funny I was just listening to it for the first time in a while last night: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=unxrRffd9iY

  25. I blame every other musician for not doing anything compelling enough to warrant our attention for the greater part of 2011. The runaway LDR train would be a back-burner issue at best if truly GREAT music was being produced this year.
    Instead we’ve had to settle for oversaturated retreads, the rise of black slutwave, ratty hipster dj’s, and the music media’s defection/conversion of indie to hip-hop.

    Pretty sure everyone is f@#king fed up.
    Things have to change soon, out of necessity. I can feel it.

  26. Download Full Album by Lana del rey – Born To Die from http://www.goo.gl/s58Ub

  27. If Wayne Coyne had collagen-filled lips I’d still love The Soft Bulletin–the bottom line is that this music is bad.

  28. The songs that have been released thus far are nice. It’s a delightful throwback to Nancy Sinatra-esc voice talent that I really miss. There have been too many female pop vocalists that push their vocals to an r&b extreme usually resulting in heavily auto-tuned tracks. LDR has more of an organic presence vocally mixed with a heavily over produced soundtrack.

    As far as songwriting capabilities go. Who cares? All music is collaborative in one way or the other, so get off your soapbox and prove me wrong…

  29. for godz sake, she is a girl, this is her song, lots of people appreciate a lot. Do not exaggerate and dont overreact… relax. Let her do what she wants and how she wants. Anyway she has nothing common with your lifes except music that can make you feel good.

  30. Slays for 2012!! A great album!

    Latest Stories: FREE Giveaway – Lana Del Rey “Born To Die”

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