Lana Del Rey released a joint music video on Thursday for two of the latest singles from her upcoming album, Norman F****ing Rockwell.
The video begins quietly, with just the hum of neon lights and the gentle clinking of an old jukebox as a hand selects a song and the machine slowly whirs to life. As the first single, “F*** It I love You,” kicks in, Del Rey appears on a modest stage, standing in front of a kitschy beachside backdrop and flanked by potted palms and electric guitars. The camera jostles unsteadily. Everything feels a little hazy. Then comes Del Rey on a surfboard and painting in an art studio, looking pensive. She appears on a 1960s-style television as a beehive-wearing surfer girl with a buff surfer by her side. They make campy facial expressions, leaning from side to side. Suddenly, they’re knocked off the surfboard and the waves behind them are revealed to be a green screen. Reality intervenes and the song fades away.
The somewhat hopeful atmosphere of the first half of the video shifts as daylight is overtaken by darkness and the second single, “The greatest,” begins to play. Drone shots capture the California coastline with its palm trees and industrial cranes. Del Rey fits right into her grim surroundings, wandering through the metal maze of one of the cranes. Her hair is whipped around by the wind, but she’s smiling. In a dive bar, she serves drinks to bikers and dangles a cigarette from her fingers. Del Rey flashes one last enigmatic smile at the camera before the needle floats off the jukebox record and the song cuts out.
Here, there’s none of the pomp and hyper-stylized glamour of Del Rey’s previous music videos. The settings are modest. There are no elaborate costumes or high-concept imagery. She lets the music speak for itself, and it steals the show.
Featured Image by Interscope Records