“Been trying not to get in trouble, but I’ve got a war in my mind”

November 13th marked the release of Lana Del Rey’s Born to Die (The Paradise Edition), which includes an eight song EP of previously unreleased content. Ms. Del Rey has had quite a year, what with generating internet buzz about herself by posting her first music video, “Video Games,” on You Tube. She smartly built a major online presence before releasing her first album, Born to Die.

After a less than thrilling appearance on Saturday Night Live, Lana Del Rey was blasted in the media as having no personality and appearing possibly stoned. Despite this (and I did watch the SNL episode), I gave her first album a shot and enjoyed listening to it for months. Lana Del Rey is quite the wordsmith and even though her songs range from silly to sad to sexual to near ridiculous, she definitely knows how to entertain and provoke.

So when I heard she was releasing 8 additional songs, I was excited to see how this music would compare with her first album.

Track list:
Ride
American
Cola
Body Electric
Blue Velvet
Gods and Monsters
Yayo
Bel Air
Burning Desire

I’ve had some time with the album and definitely have some thoughts. Lana Del Rey paints a picture with her lyrics of an underbelly of sex, drugs and rock ā€˜nā€™ roll in the Hollywood Hills. Typical themes are innocence lost, freedom, and pleasure seeking, provoking men and women alike, all whilst wearing a party dress. It’s like she’s a lost Alice in Wonderland, dancing through hot summer nights, staying up til all hours, looping in pop culture from all eras to form this baby doll-faced, sultry-voiced persona who lives in a Rockabilly motion picture of her own creation captured by a Dream Pop lens.

Standout tracks on the album for me are: “Ride” (though the music video leaves something to be desired), “Body Electric,” “Gods and Monsters” and “Burning Desire.” Still trying to grasp “Yayo” and “Bel Air,” which both just sound like Dream Pop landscape.

All in all, I would give the EP 4 out of 5 stars. While I enjoy the melodrama Lana gives us, some of the songs are a bit too melancholy. However, that being said, I definitely see growth in these eight new songs and look forward to what Lana decides to do next.

– Submitted by Ashley Columbus, Music Design