How NOT to write about music – 107. Lana Del Rey

lana del rey

She reminds me of Daniel Johnston. Indefensible, really.

Love the opening 1.21 minutes of this video.

Twenty-four hours ago, the first nine songs on the new Lana Del Rey album Norman Fucking Rockwell connected powerfully with me on the 07.37 train to Clapham Junction. I am not into all this California dreaming (the reality of my mundane existence outside my job is too grey for any of that). I do dream of being female, yes. I do think of that hotel where Prince took baths covered in rose petals. Sunset Marquis. All the good girls go to hell. I do occasionally like to recall those moments when I could sprinkle fairy-dust over folk and they would evolve, turn into next level Pokémon. I do not fantasise about being able to say “fuck it, I love you”, though (a lyric Lana lifted from The Lovely Eggs, surely) because the mundane reality of my life outside BIMM does not allow for such fantasies. Maybe it should. But then, I would need to counter the tiredness. And I cannot counter the tiredness. Not without support. And I have no support.

Right now, I just want to listen to the lovely Lovely Eggs. Damn it.

To backtrack a second. I have felt conflicted about my love for Lana Del Rey, since day one really. Angry at those taking her to task over ‘authenticity’. (What the fuck? You don’t call out Springsteen but you call out Del Rey?) Bored of the apparent boredom, the same photograph repeated over and over. I love the way she’s mutated back into whoever she was before Lana Del Rey existed and no one has noticed however (mainly, cos it’s not important). Too many friends whose opinions I value and cannot disregard were voicing their sheer uncritical love for her new album on my social media feeds, however – sure, that sets her up for a fall far as she’s concerned, but fuck it. I love her.

She knows how to do the whole Chan Marshall thing, right?

So yeah. The opening nine or so songs on her new album captivated me, made me switch off the rain and the grey and the crowds and the secondhand smoke smell and those lads boorishly laughing at their own hilarity eight in the fucking morning (but good on them, at least they’re enjoying shit), and made me pull back into my special secret place – the one where I am loved, and can cuddle, and able to decide randomly who to love and when to love – and I felt warmed, given solace. The idea that Lana Del can communicate to me is absurd – correct? – but she can, and she does. That song ‘The Greatest’ is like Berlin or Pat Benator or someone, but from the perspective of… I really don’t know what I am writing here.

She’s my ideal, my New York City to my reality, my Haywards Heath.

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