Lana Del Rey’s ‘Honeymoon’: Review Revue
Lana Del Rey‘s gloomy Honeymoon was released today (September 18), and it finds her sinking deeper into the glam-noir universe she has spent the past four years conjuring, a place where heartbreak is expressed via slow lounge tunes and airy coos.
Lana has always been the sad girl who’s pretty when she cries, but Honeymoon has some of the saddest and prettiest songs she’s ever released, resulting in her most uniform and enveloping release. But it’s also arguably her least engaging work: Everything moves at the placid pace of heavy drapery swaying in the stillness, and hooks have to be spotted under layers of luxurious textures.
But that’s my take! See what critics around the web are saying in our roundup of reviews below.
:: Rolling Stone awarded the album 4/5, concluding “Whatever her intentions, they’ve led to her most genuinely thrilling music ever.”
:: Stereogum calls it “a slick blockbuster record both of its time and completely outside of it.” “The songs don’t always function that well on their own…But it’s an album with a sense of atmosphere, of vibe, that very few pop singers can hope to equal right now. Lana Del Rey is out here making swooning languid supper-club fantasias with heavy bass, and she’s making this stuff resonate as pop music, which is an incredible achievement.”
:: The (newly free!) NME scored it 3 out of 5, and overall found the LP convincing. “The words ‘very different’ were an exaggeration – bad boys, sadness, mortality and the myth of California are still on the menu…Lana seems more fragile, and more human this time. And it makes you think: perhaps it’s not a character after all.”
:: The New York Times offered up an even-handed review that at one point compares Lana to a dog napping in the sun and calls the LP this century’s “first great prison album,” whatever that means. “She’s been angry, and then bored of being angry, but now she’s just bored, and her boredom is entrancing…Ms. Del Rey’s weakness remains her narrow field of vision. And her apathy does tend towards lethargy — individual songs seep long past their most pungent moments, and her unwavering vocal approach can induce somnolence.”
:: Grantland shared a lengthy essay about the album that posits “Lana has grown into a jaded film noir femme fatale, a nighthawk at the beach…Lana is the queen of musical melodrama.”
:: USA Today handed out 3 stars out of 4. “Although much sleepier than her last two albums, Honeymoon shows that Del Rey’s sound has evolved and matured in captivating ways. Unfortunately, some of her songs still get tripped up in their clunky lyrics.”
:: The Guardian‘s 4/5 reviewer writes “Her score-like songs are self-sabotagingly slow, striving for Rat-Pack romance and often succeeding…With a little chopped-and-screwed modernity, hints of jazz and Morricone-like soundscapes, there’s a timelessness to Honeymoon, and an intrigue that should linger longer than her previous LPs.”
:: Meanwhile, fellow UK publication The Independent points out Lana “floats through these songs with a weird indifference” but praises the Lynchian album’s ability to make intense emotions feel chillingly blasé on the way to a 4 out of 5 grade.