Born to Die by Lana Del Rey

We all need an escape from reality sometimes in our lives, especially during times of stress or unhappiness . This is where Lana Del Rey comes in. Her voice, which is soulful, beautiful, and ethereal (with a hint of pain and longing) offers you that wonderful escape. Her 2012 album “Born to Die” will pull you in – and won’t let go – as soon as the first melodic chords start.

Lana Del Rey ventures away from the generic, overplayed pop stars of today. She channels the 1950s and ?s in both her image and her songs, and doesn’t need back-up dancers or pyrotechnics to command an audience’s attention; her voice does the job for her. You can grasp that by listening to her belt out lyrics in “Video Games,” one of several ballads.

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In other songs, like ­“National Anthem,” “Diet Mountain Dew,” and “Off To The Races,” Lana Del Rey mixes her soft vocals with quick, upbeat instrumentals and lyrics like, “Red, white, blue’s in the skies/Summer’s in the air and/Baby, heaven’s in your eyes/I’m your national ­anthem.

There are other songs from “Born to Die” that captivate, including dark, poignant “Dark Paradise” and “Carmen,” The ominous tones to these songs balance the rest of the album’s livelier tracks.

Even though some songs seemed to fall a little flat at first, like “Million Dollar Man” and “This is What Makes Us Girls,” listening to them again and thinking about the story behind them made me realize what great songs they were.

Even though Lana Del Rey sings mostly about love and ­relationships, she manages to make each song unique, with different stories in her lyrics.

The instrumentals that accompany Lana Del Rey’s songs are lovely. Each song has ­different instrumentals to set the tone for the lyrics. There are also drum beats here, like in “National Anthem.” The mix of classical and modern instruments provides a unique sound.

Lana Del Rey truly is a gift to the twenty-first century. Among too-sweet pop songs and the focus on who has the most avant-garde costumes, she restores hope in the music industry, especially pop.

Del Rey is a singer who is living proof that pop music doesn’t have to be a big joke to people; it can be serious and beautiful, with songs that stay in your memory forever.

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