By Caitlin Fisher
Lana Del Rey, longtime dream-pop icon and confirmed witch best-known for her sultry voice and melancholic lyrics, her released her sixth studio album, “Norman F***ing Rockwell!”, late last week.
As always, Del Rey provides a number of bops, jams and bangers, all detailing tragic romances and the virtues and vices of American pop culture. Each of her songs provide the perfect soundtrack for nearly any occasion — but five of her songs provide the perfect score for the walk from East to West Campus. Here are the five best songs to listen to on the walk to class as hot-girl summer comes to an end and sad-girl fall begins:
- “Norman F***ing Rockwell”
It feels appropriate to begin this list with the album’s titular track. This is a great song to listen to on the way to class, especially if your class is filled with any manner of mansplainers or pretentious peers, as this deceivingly melodic ballad is actually a sharply-worded takedown of one such annoying pseudo-intelligent dudebro.
Del Rey starts the song by declaring her lover a man-child, and denouncing him as a “self-loathing poet, resident Laurel Canyon know-it-all,” iconically sharing some deep-cutting truths: “your poetry’s bad, and you blame the news.” All-in-all, this song is a great reminder that you’re never required to stroke anyone’s ego at the expense of your own.
2. “Doin’ Time”
This cover of Sublime’s 1996 hit has been catching radio waves all summer, which is easy to understand once you’ve listened to it once. Its catchy beat and clever lyrics are a nostalgic callback to the dog days of summer, which can be a great mood-lifter if you’re on the way to a stats class in the middle of November when you’d rather be on the beach.
This song is lyrically genius, full of references to other classic songs, best demonstrated with the lyrics “but sometimes, girls just wanna have fun, the poetry inside me is warm like a gun.” The song narrates the affection between Del Rey and the eponymous bartender, with Del Rey pleading him to remember her drink order, “Baby, remember, I’m not drinking wine, but that Cherry Coke you serve is fine.”
While this is certainly a little too melancholy for a pregame playlist, it’s certainly fun to imagine this song is about the bartender at TITS, which is a silly enough suggestion to brighten anyone’s day.
4.“hope is a dangerous thing for a woman like me to have—but I have it”
This is an anthem for any frenzied female academic. More than in any of her other songs, Del Rey seems to adopt the persona of a stressed-out college student, best demonstrated in the song’s chorus: “I’ve been tearing around in my f***ing nightgown, 24/7 Sylvia Plath, Writing in blood on my walls, ‘Cause the ink in my pen don’t work in my nightpad.” Who hasn’t felt that unhinged while writing a paper at three in the morning?
This is another song that validates any nostalgia or anxieties about the present state of the world, all assuaged and recognized by the queen of nostalgia and anxiety herself. Throughout the song, Del Rey confesses to feeling burnt out, missing various people and relationships, best captured by the chorus: “The culture is lit and I had a ball/I guess that I’m burned out after all.”
As well as articulating some harsh truths and providing some reassurance about the possible end of the world, the instrumentation on this song also slaps, so at least we have that going for us.