HONEYMOON by Lana Del Rey - A Full Review & Recap

Honeymoon is finally out.

Del Rey's debut album, Born to Die, was a fiery explosion of red white and blue...to say the least. As she started to release more music, her hair got darker. Her voice got deeper. It was like you could sense the pure exhaustion in her soul. You got to live out her journey with her, which is why each album is truly a gem in it's own way.

A lot of critics think Honeymoon is underwhelming compared to her past albums. Yet even more critics will state that Honeymoon is Lana's best album yet.

However, I can't agree with either statement. Lana Del Rey isn't to be judged in that sense. She makes music because she has to, not to break records or top charts. Each album represents a set of stories, an era in Del Rey's life. They are tied together with secret motifs wrapped in poetry and pain. When we try to judge one Lana's music from a production, instrumental or even a vocal standpoint - we are judging her wrongly. Art is a very organic process for Lana and we don't have to like the art she puts out.

While Born to Die, Paradise, Ultraviolence, and even her unreleased music show her in abusive relationships, driving across the country, starving for fame, struggling with drugs and money - Honeymoon is the light at the end of the tunnel. It's sort of coming to terms with who you are and your situation. There's not much to do once you hit the top. "What now?"

Honeymoon isn't the journey or the destination. It's the after. She stated in an interview with V Magazine that Honeymoon is about "life, love, paradise, freedom...that's forever. With someone, or just with yourself."

These 3.5 albums have been quite an adventure. I never listened to them because they passed the societal standard of 'what real music is,' but because I've always felt a spiritual connection to them.

There's a sense of acceptance and hope in Honeymoon, instead of the typical feeling of struggle and stress. And I can vibe with that.

Here is a track-by-track review of Honeymoon:

1. Honeymoon
I expected a lot out of this song, but it's actually my least favorite on the album. I think it's boring, underwhelming, and really has no underlying theme to it.
2. Music to Watch Boys To
This is one of her few 'background' songs. It doesn't carry as much as most of her music does, but it's refreshing to have that on a Lana album.
3. Terrence Loves You
This song is honestly so beautifully crafted. It's jazzy, raw, and REAL. It's filled with desperate love and sudden realization of your current situation. "I lost myself when I lost you..."
4. God Knows I Tried
An absolute 1960s bittersweet dream. It really represents the end of an era with such hopeful undertones. It makes me want to go soul-searching again and run in an open field.
5. High By the Beach
Just a tad overrated, but it's a lovely song for summer.
6. Freak
Sitting by the pool in California, light rock music in the background, summer love & sunsets. This song makes me want to relive summer again. Not to mention, it's one of her sexiest songs.
7. Art Deco
The moment she says "queen of the downtown scene," my heart literally stops. If Born to Die, her unreleased demos and Ultraviolence had a baby, it would be this track.
8. Burnt Norton (Interlude)
I'm so happy Lana included this. Her voiceovers make me want to takeover the world and fall asleep at the same time. Ever since she started putting voiceovers in her music and videos, almost every female artist started doing it. Taylor Swift, Selena Gomez, Halsey...the list goes on and on. I choose Lana's voiceovers anyway.
9. Religion
If any song is going to be a single, it should be 'Religion.' The very moment the chorus hits, it's like I have the sudden urge to start dancing.
10. Salvatore
Am I driving through Italy on a red moped or am I listening to this song? I want to slow dance to this song in Italy while eating spaghetti and I WILL. Absolutely stunning.
11. The Blackest Day
This song embodies Lana Del Rey. It starts off with one of her classic nail polish references, continues with her nostalgic vocals, and of course she talks about cars and guns. 1950s tease.
12. 24
I don't even care about the lyrics, because her vocals make me go crazy in this song. Filled with grace and adrenaline, it sounds like it came straight out of a James Bond film.
13. Swan Song
This song hits me because I know how hard Lana has struggled in her life to get where she is and at this point, she just wants to live and love. This could potentially be the last 'real song' on a Lana album, so I don't take the lyrics lightly. Let's just say I cried the first time I listened to it.
14. Don't Let Me Be Misunderstood
"But I'm just a soul who's intentions are good..." A strikingly beauteous cover and an impeccable way to end the album.

Listen to Honeymoon below.

And the collection is complete.