Watch: Lana Del Rey premieres ‘Off to the Races’ and heads to ‘SNL’

12.23.11 7 years ago

Lana Del Rey has a full-length album due in a month, granted, but it seemed a little absurd when, this week, it was announced she’d be joining “Saturday Night Live” (Jan. 14) as a musical guest, two weeks before “Born to Die” drops on Jan. 31. She’s released only three songs.

OK, well, make that four, if one were to include pop parody. Because that’s what “Off to the Races” is, or sounds like.

Taking a nod to from Rihanna, the singer adds a little dub cadence to her vocals for the verse, before taking on karaoke campiness and ending the refrain with a squeak toy. This is a wordy word track, some narrative and some nonsense tumbling out into found footage of girls-and-guns. And, again with the blood, the religious imagery and guys with tattoos making kissy. I see some themes, but not much substance here.

So just add me to the hater pile-on. The late-’90s power dark-dance groove doesn’t do much for me, not compared to the impeccable produced “Video Games.” Vocally, Del Rey is still carving out her character.

I’m a little surprised that she’s not featured on “SNL” the same week she is releasing her album, or in the weeks following. New audiences will have only a limited time to memorize her name, which is largely unknown outside online chatter.

“SNL” will feature host Daniel Radcliffe. Del Rey is signed to interscope.

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