Lana Del Rey’s new album “Honeymoon,” released on Friday, was everything but disappointing. Listeners can expect sepia-filtered ideas, hazy jazz melodies and Del Rey showing off her Italian.
“High By the Beach” teased fans for a little over a month before the album was released. It was received with mixed feelings, but no one can deny that it really has some movement. My mother even knows some of the lyrics. Surprisingly, this is the most upbeat track featured on “Honeymoon.” For the duration of most of the album, Del Rey floats, suspended in solemn air while delivering smoldering work—the best of her career.
“Honeymoon” cradles Del Rey in her most comfortable range—mostly low tones. As her voice lifts upward, Del Rey sinks into the shadows of noir thoughts and muddy trap styles. Previous albums featured songs of her life narrative, but “Honeymoon” is an invitation into Del Rey’s private reflections. Her story has been told, and now she is free to just make music. Honeymoon does not maintain the same kind of tension as her other albums. It does not express the same kinds of pain. However, the tracks remain true to the morose attitude for which Del Rey is renowned.
Lana Del Rey did not satisfy her fans with many comments about the anticipated release.
Social media revealed very little about what was coming. Del Rey only sporadically posted cryptic comments and photos on Instagram that revealed little to nothing, but that is the way of this famously elusive and mysterious artist.
The album opens up with the haunting song for which the album is named: “Honeymoon.” It is a perfect opening that sets the stage for expressing her vision for the album. “I love this song because it encapsulates all of the things that come naturally to me,” Del Rey said via her website in July. “In some ways I feel it’s where the record begins and ends.”
The music blends the electricity of modern pop and trap with pastel 1950s themes. She picks up the tempo gradually with a slow burn. Her sound is more abstract than ever. While listening, I could not decide whether to lose myself in the music or indulge in something spicy and sweet. Her moody blues is ideal to listen to alone in a low-lit room or with a lover. It’s not the kind of album you listen to for getting pumped on the way to a bar.
As I have often experienced listening to Del Rey, I could see myself reflected in her voice. “Money Power Glory” from the album “Ultraviolence” is still the most resounding piece I have ever heard from Del Rey. It made me re-evaluate myself.
As “Honeymoon” closed with Del Rey’s cover of the familiar jazz track “Don’t Let Me Be Misunderstood,” I was inspired. It was the most intense hour and five minutes I have ever spent with myself. Of course, not all fans will share my experience. The album has a unique energy that Del Rey has never ventured to master before, but it may be her best yet.
“I’m going deeper and, I’m getting darker and ,” sings Del Rey in “The Blackest Day.” Where exactly is Lana going? In my opinion, she is diving straight into her truestself.