Lana Del Rey is an artist and story teller all in one. Her new album “Did you know that there’s a tunnel under Ocean Blvd” takes the listener through haunting and beautiful chapters of her life and the emotions of love. This album is full of beautiful metaphors on how Lana feels about herself and relating her personal, as well as, her professional relationship with the public and how it has affected her. The album title itself is unique and draws the listener in more to find out what exactly she is asking and the meaning behind this tunnel under Ocean Blvd. Lana’s song writing abilities have never been better and this album shows just how much musical risk and personal emotions she is putting on the table. She is one of the most vulnerable musical artists of our generation with her capability to communicate her emotions and stories through music.
The album starts off with a beautiful chorus of a song called “The Grants” that will make you contemplate about life and death. This song will make you reflect on your memories and which of those you would want to bring with you after your gone, especially with who. She reflects on her own memories in the song like her sisters first born and her grandma’s smile. There is such beauty and meaning in this song. In songs like “Sweet” and the alums title “Did you know that there’s a tunnel under Ocean Blvd” she is being incredible vulnerable by asking if her love interest and others will really love her for her. Most of her songs on the album is her asking for confirmation that she will be loved and not forgotten by those around her. The songs are lullaby cries of wanting to be needed and wanted.
If you are looking to feel something, this album is the first thing that should be on your playlist. It will make you reflect on yourself on how you view your life and relationships with others. Throughout the album she includes interludes from recordings of Paster Judah Smith to break up the music. She uses these recordings to get the point across that she realizes that most of her preaching in her songs is really to herself, not to the listener. It is to show her reflecting on her own life and as if she is reading her diary aloud, but comes to realize her preaching is just to herself. These interludes throughout the album help specify her meaning in including them. Pastor Judah Smith is quoted preaching at his sermon “and you are not gonna like this, but I’m gonna tell you the truth. I’ve discovered my preaching is mostly about me”. This was so powerful and connecting for Lana to hear that she felt it was more than necessary to make it apart of the album and it wouldn’t be complete without it. The interludes are all very powerful and do make a significant impact to storytelling of it all.
The rest of the album carries on with relationship trials and search of new beginnings in her life. “Candy Necklaces” featuring Jon Batiste is another alluring single on the album that describes the intoxication of being in love with someone to the point they are damaging you, but you always try to focus on the good of the relationship. Love and can be sweet and inviting like candy necklaces, but sooner or realize that it is not good for you. The song ends with a call and response between herself and Jon as if they are two lovers communicating. “Paris, Texas” has a charming piano melody that she expresses the desire of leaving and starting a new beginning. It has a light and whimsical feel that you can easily listen to and enjoy.
This 16-track album will bring to you tears, make you smile and reflect on the good memories in your life. Not very many albums that are produced today in the music industry can say that they had that much emotion put into one album. The best way to listen to this album is to have your ears and your heart open. The lyrics and the sweet melodies of Lana’s voice will bring you a calm and peaceful atmosphere. Sit back and relax to her soulful and beautifully made new album.
Reviewed by Katie Melching