After pulling the video from Youtube yesterday, Lana Del Rey re-released the video for her single "West Coast" today, and these are all of my thoughts after watching the video just one time.
1. Right off the bat, I love the black and white photography, especially black and white photography of a sunny day. It reminds of Danzig's "Dirty Black Summer" video, or really anything shot by Anton Corbijn. I wonder if he had anything to do with this.
2. A trip to Wikipedia tells me that no, Anton Corbijn did not direct this, but it doesn't say who actually directed it. Maybe Corbijn did direct it and he was too embarrassed (or too humble) to put his name on it.
3. She sounds like she's singing with something in her mouth, or as if she's attempting ventriloquism for the first time.
4. Isn't Lana Del Rey from New York? Why is she singing about the West Coast? She does seem more like a California artist than a NYC artist, though. If you love it so much out there, Lana, how about you stay out there? We don't need you here back in New York. We've got David Bowie, and St. Vincent, and David Byrne.
5. That rhythmic shift into the chorus is actually really cool, it reminds me of the Beatles' "We Can Work It Out."
6. Those "ooh baby" lines in the chorus sound an awful lot like Stevie Nicks' "Edge of Seventeen," but I'm not complaining. Like I said in our review of Lily Allen's new album, steal from the best if you're going to steal at all.
7. I'm sure other people have said this before, but she looks a lot like Priscilla Presley. Not saying that in a good or bad way, just noticing.
8. Why is she riding in the back seat of a car with a dead body? This is feeling a lot like Weekend at Bernie's.
9. Those flames remind me a lot of the video for Pearl Jam's "Jeremy," but I like this more because it actually seems less pretentious.
10. You shouldn't smoke cigarettes, Lana. They're bad for you and you're going to end up looking like that corpse you're sitting next to. I'd also warn you about losing your singing voice, but Jeff Buckley smoked, and he had the voice of a thousand angels, so I guess it doesn't really make that much of a difference. It probably doesn't help, though.
11. The only Lana Del Rey song I had heard before this was "Video Games," which I'm not a big fan of, but I'm actually digging "West Coast" way more than I thought I would. It sounds like a cross between Portishead and Beach House. I just wish Lana would be more expressive with her vocals, and wouldn't hide them underneath a bunch of layering and reverb. Lana, you're a pop star and a lot of people love you, so you might as well sing proudly.