• Alexander Mays

Rock Candy Sweet

Updated: Jun 1

Lana Del Rey is expected to release her latest album Rock Candy Sweet on June 1st, according to Rolling Stone magazine. An album resulting from a noticeable surge of Pandemic era creativity.

Famous for her syrupy vocals and soulful lyrics, she has been described as the 'unexpected gay icon' of our time, and is arguably one of our most elusive pop stars.

Grace Yang, contributor for the Tulane Hullabaloo describes how her music is aimed at

"individuals who feel like they are on the outside but want to be accepted into societies standards..."

a feeling that resonates deeply with many of the marginalized members of our society.

Veering from the norm, the imagery that she evokes looks as if shot through the lens of an analogue camera…exuding a vintage Hollywood etherea with a lugubrious melancholy. When riding on a motorbike, or smoking a cigarette in an alleyway, a melancholy is piercingly evident. A melancholy that ranges from operatic at times to sultry at others.

Lana's chameleonic artistry expresses the challenges of love, loss and conformity—belonging to no one yet belonging to everyone. The beauty lies in her voice, a voice that has grandeur but is still undeniably unique. Savory black liquorice is served instead of the usual cotton candy.

With the release of her hit album in 2012 followed by the commercial success of Video Game in 2011, Born to Die elevated her level of fame from indie niche to stardom. The dark undertone present in her ballads along with her marketable aura firmly cemented her into the mainstream.

Despite the glam, Lana is no stranger to controversy and has endured a generous amount since the beginning of her career when her authenticity was called into question. Controversy that has threatened to wilt the flowers synonymous with her image...and has led many to wonder who the real singer actually is.

Considering the current pressure for celebrities on social media, where transparency is expected...the gloss of a phone screen, enabling widespread access for fans into Lana’s private domain could easily threaten to expose the real star from behind the smoke.

In addition to accusations regarding authenticity, diversity or a lack thereof have been scrutinized due to the exclusion of people of color on her last album cover Chemtrails Over the Countryclub where 11 white women posed for a photo.

In response, she confessed that she has always strived for inclusivity throughout her career, and was quick to criticize the overly political nature of social media—demanding more respect from her fans.

10 points to Gryffindor!

As the release date for Rock Candy Sweet is less than a month away, Blue Bannister another project that she announced in April is also set to be released later this summer…

a summer that will hopefully welcome fresh new artistry from Lana.

A summer less restricted than the last, and perhaps even a bit less sad.

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