Review Summary: Hail to the Queen.
One can't help but sense a bit of unease, panic, perhaps even fear, in the way that critics and public alike are hesitant to award Born to Die
the proper grand accolades it deserves, and instead settle for an offhand and unaccountable "sort of OK". Notably, accusations of ingenuity were often brought up...
...Which is strange. Suddenly people seem very intent on stripping music of its theatrics. Suddenly art is supposed to be all about a strictly unadulterated and honest expression of self, rather than the skill of putting up a convincing act. Why? Well, I'll be damned if this ain't denial. After all, the effortlessness with which "Born to Die" succeeds in being so fresh, alluring and believable at the same time is staggering. And all this attached to the captivating stage persona of Lana del Rey -- we might be witnessing one of the most elaborate deceptions in the industry's history. So on that count I can't really blame the aforementioned critics for their reluctance to accept a potential fraud.
I will toss caution aside, though. Let's not care about any discrepancies between the life of Elizabeth Grant and the stage act Lana del Rey. Let's not care if she was tricked up as a product of some convoluted corporate plot. The fact remains that "Born to Die" still comes off as convincing, and del Rey proves herself able to enchant her audience and to command love and fascination like very few can. The music she's made, the act she's put up, is believable. Lana del Rey is ultimately a good artist, even if she's not living her music.
So I'm buying it, buying her. Maybe I'm a sucker, maybe it's all a lie, but hey, it's a damn good lie, one I'll not be ashamed to have fallen for. I, for one, welcome the new Queen.
Album rules. Lana del Rey rules. All hail.