Music review

Violence voiced 

‘Ultraviolence’ is the third studio album by American singer-songwriter Lana Del Rey.

 Most songs in the album give the impression that every other woman in the world is a loser, and all the men, weirdos. The subjects range from drugs and cars to money and the bad boys she is always falling for, besides complex relationships and old moneyed men.

But if you ignore the lyrical content of the songs, the music is likely to register some pleasance.

The opening song, Cruel World, is a cathartic, slow-burning tune about a girl who has just detached herself from a destructive relationship. Ultraviolence, the title of which comes from the cult film A Clockwork Orange, is about a woman who likes being slapped while at the same time declaring “you’re my cult leader” to her abuser. The song combines passion and aggression to the sentimental piano and strings. 

Shades of Cool is another cynical lament building up to a guitar solo, which is a rarity these days. Brooklyn Baby is about a hipster mooning after a guitarist of a band. Pretty When You Cry is a song about chasing a mirage and of a man who lets her down, while Money Power Glory is a venomous song about having had enough being the doormat. Old Money is a lyrically vague song about the whims and fancies of people who have inherited money, but the piano chimes and violin strains stand out. 

The Other Woman is a cover version of an old standard for which Nina Simone became famous in 1959. In this song, Lana finally relents that being a plaything for powerful men isn’t all that great as it is made up to be.

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