On Aug. 30, renowned alternative-pop singer, Lana Del Rey, released her elegant sixth studio album, “Norman F****** Rockwell!”.
While mostly self-written and produced, Jack Antonoff’s marks of production can be found throughout the album.
The album focuses on themes of complex love and moving on, an unusual topic for the “Summertime Sadness” singer. The album differs from her previous works by showing the audience that she has evolved not only as an artist but also as a person. By far her boldest title, she is making a statement: she is not the same person she was before.
Many of Del Rey’s past albums dwell on heartbreak and the pain it inflicted onto her, but this album is different. She sings gracefully about concepts of freedom and personal growth. It is far less sloppy than past studio efforts done by Del Rey. It speaks that love is a powerful force and sometimes it is necessary to simply move on from pain.
The album highlight, “The Greatest,” is a delicate ballad about a nostalgic love. The vintage feel of the song reflects Del Rey’s reminiscence but also her sense of humor. The latter part of the song references how the world has changed over the years and really juxtaposes the overall feel of the song and album. The lyrics leave the listener with the sense that the world around them continues to get more superficial and less connected so the simple and relaxing orchestra and piano behind Del Rey on this track provide a bit of comfort to a despaired audience.
Where the album struggles is that though cohesive, many of the songs find themselves struggling to stand out. Most of the tracks have a similar production style and frequently the same instruments are used throughout the entire body of work. This, on top of Del Rey’s usual melancholic vocals, creates a recipe for lackluster tracks with little individuality, sonically speaking.
The album is one of Del Rey’s best. It commands the audience’s attention lyrically and reflects personal growth as well as artistic and reeks elegance. Though some of the individual tracks may blend in with one another a little too much, the album certainly does not when comparing it to its predecessors. “Norman F****** Rockwell!” is a step in the right direction.
Track by track:
“Norman f****** Rockwell”: 5/5
“Mariners Apartment Complex”: 4/5
“Venice B****”: 4/5
“F*** it I love you”: 4/5
“Doin’ Time”: 5/5
“Love song”: 5/5
“Cinnamon Girl”: 3/5
“How to disappear”: 5/5
“The Next Best American Record”: 5/5
“The greatest”: 5/5
“Happiness is a butterfly”: 5/5
“hope is a dangerous thing for a woman like me to have – but I have it”: 3/5
Overall rating: 87/100