"Norman F-cking Rockwell!" Review

As hot girl summer comes to an end, Lana Del Rey kicks off sad girl autumn with her brand-new album, “Norman F-cking Rockwell!.”

Her sixth album proves itself to be nothing less of a masterpiece as it reaches #1 on the iTunes Worldwide Albums Chart within only one week of its release. Totaling at an hour and seven minutes, the 14-track album takes listeners on an emotional roller coaster with themes of hopeless love, independence, nostalgia, transformation and fearlessness. Altogether, these tones form a well-rounded, musical milestone for her that showcases her dreamy vocals, melancholic melodies and powerful lyrics. While many listeners name “Born to Die,” “Ultraviolence” or “Lust for Life” as her best album, I personally believe the 34-year-old artist outdid herself by creating a lyrically and musically brilliant album.

What makes Lana Del Rey such a unique artist is how raw and authentic her lyrics are, and this genuineness is showcased in her song, “F-ck it I love you.” This song dives into a toxic lifestyle with a potential love interest in the center of it all. She sings, “So I moved to California, but it’s just a state of mind / It turns out everywhere you go, you take yourself, that’s not a lie.” She is singing about how she is trying to escape her unhealthy lifestyle, but her tendencies come along with her. She follows up this tragic realization by singing, “wish that you would hold me or just say that you were mine,” to express her one hopeless desire in her world. The soft rock ballads and high vocals featured make this song utterly breathtaking.

Lana Del Rey notably took risks while writing this album, which is shown by her incorporating her own beliefs in her music, specifically in the track, “The Greatest.” She reminisces about the music industry, singing, “I miss New York and I miss the music / Me and my friends, we miss rock ‘n’ roll.” She even goes as far to note climate change in her line, “L.A. is in flames, it’s getting hot.” These powerful lyrics give us a window into her soul and allow us to learn more about her not only as a singer, but as a person.

She adds more depth to her artistry with a different melody than usual in her track, “Venice B-tch.” This track stands as her longest one on the album, lasting just under ten minutes. She sings nostalgically of a fond time with her loved one, referring to the pair as “American-made.” However, the song turns into a psychedelic adventure through the use of instruments such as electric guitars, drums and synths to create the effect of time fading away. This song is truly one of my favorites on the album, for it was so thoughtfully crafted. 

Overall, this album is not only a treat for listeners, but it is an important piece of work to grace the music industry. “NFW” showcases the wide range of Lana Del Rey’s talents, displaying her signature style, risky lyrics and a twist on her expected sound.

Her two-year long efforts in creating this album certainly have not gone unnoticed and I would definitely say it is worth giving this album a listen, or stream it throughout the entire day if you are like me.

Go get your listen on, Owls!