Lana Del Rey
Lana Del Rey has always loved to play with her critics and Honeymoon might be her biggest kiss-off yet. Critics praised her last album, Ultraviolence, for its songwriting, desert rock influences and Dan Auberbach’s production. But, Honeymoon still chooses to return to the divisive trip-hop of her debut album Born to Die. The dramatic string sections are back, along with her signature touches of hip-hop and drama Americana. The first three tracks work best: “Honeymoon” recalls the blissful grandeur of her previous noir ballads; “Music to Watch Boys To” is delightfully sinister and coy. “Terrence Loves You” is a stunning, plaintive torch ballad. Yet, just like her debut, Honeymoon quickly loses steam. It tries with tracks like “High By the Beach” and “Art Deco”, but these could’ve used Auerbach’s touch. The worst offender by far is “Salvatore” with its refrain of Italian nonsense. Album closer “Don’t Let Me Be Misunderstood” could be a rebuttal to everything said here. It’s an ingenious cover where her subversive and self-aware wit returns. But, by then, it’s too little too late and Honeymoon feels like it’s filled with regressions.