Lana Del Rey has been a cult favorite in the alternative music world for over six years now. With albums as successful as “Born to Die,” which has spent a whopping 300 weeks on the charts, it’s no wonder her success has lasted so long in the vicious cycle of the music industry. Real Lana fans, however, expand their musical horizons beyond her five studio albums, and wander into the worlds of May Jailer and Lizzy Grant, her alter-egos preceding her current stint as Lana Del Rey. With hundreds of demos leaked onto YouTube, these tunes are easily accessible and beautifully unconventional. Here are five of her most unappreciated (and underheard) songs:
- “Serial Killer”
If you like Lana’s darker songs like “Dark Paradise,” you’ll dig the semi-maniacal luster of this track, showcasing Lana’s ability to write terribly morbid lyrics while maintaining a pop sound, heard in clever lyrics like: “Just have fun, wanna play you like a Gameboy, I don’t want one, what’s the thrill of the same toy?”
- “Queen of Disaster”
This track could be flow seamlessly on the “Born to Die” album. Once again, we have Lana singing about what she knows best: being the queen of a twisted romance. It’s romantic in a Bonnie-and-Clyde type of way, much like a lot of her “Paradise”-era songs.
- “Kinda Outta Luck”
Similar to “Serial Killer,” Lana croons in this song about her love gone seriously, deathly wrong. It’s a warning to any man who dares to stand in her way. Her creative storytelling comes to life in this homemade music video from the Lizzy Grant era.
- “Tired of Singing the Blues”
This is something completely outside the realm of moody dream pop, aligning itself more to classic blues, not dissimilar from Nina Simone. Lana nails a lot of surprising notes here, while reminding her listeners that she’s capable of more than just singing the same old blues. It’s a throwback to a time when Lana couldn’t achieve her breakthrough in the industry. She even sings, “nobody’s had more shots at the moon, and missed, than me.”
- “Brite Lites”
Finally, “Brite Lites” is Lana’s most danceable synth pop jam on this list, while incorporating her signature dark retro flair. If you’re also a Marina and the Diamonds fan, this song will stand out most to you. It’s bold, brash and unlike anything we’ve heard from Lana before or since.