On March 19, singer-songwriter Lana del Rey released her latest album “Chemtrails over the Country Club.”
As a longtime fan, I was eager to hear Lana’s latest creation. I fell in love with her last album, 2019’s “Norman F***ing Rockwell!”, and she was the last artist I saw in concert before the pandemic hit. Needless to say, expectations were high.
Unfortunately, I was less than impressed with Lana’s latest musical installation.
The album starts with a five-minute and 33-second musical number titled “White Dress” that seems to rehash every other lyric Lana ever crafted. Mention of a color and a clothing item? Check. Mention of her job as a waitress? Check. Pursuing rich old men? Check.
The shrill whisper singing on this track does not do Lana’s voice justice, and the song offers nothing lyrically. 2/10
The simple guitar chords on this song are soothing and the chorus is catchy: “Seasons will turn / The world it will turn / The only thing we’ll turn, is the pages of all the poems we burn.” I like the song, but it’s far from Lana’s best. “Yosemite” is background music. It doesn’t seem to add anything to Lana’s lyrical canon, and for that reason, it gets a 4/10.
‘Chemtrails Over The Country Club’
This titular song was the first song I listened to from the album. “Chemtrails” seems to capture the same escapism present in Lana’s other albums and harkens back to some chord progressions we saw in “NFR.” That being said, this song features a much more mature sound than anything else we’ve seen in Lana’s discography. Although it’s nice to see Lana take her sound in a new direction, this new style in “Chemtrails” translates into a lack of emotional conviction. Lana seemed bored singing this, and I certainly am as well. 4/10
‘Wild at Heart’
This song was my saving grace. It sounds like every other Lana song, but it’s a much-needed change of pace on this album. Had it been on any of Lana’s other albums, it’s hard to say whether or not it would’ve stood out as much, but I’m not going to look a gift horse in the mouth. “Wild at Heart” is excellent lyrically and musically, and I could listen to it for hours. 8/10.
‘Dance Till We Die”
Initially, this song doesn’t seem like anything special. Like the other songs, it’s a nostalgic review of her previous friendships and experience. However, three minutes in the song undergoes a big change. The switch-up is funky, fun and, dare I say, groovy. It’s hard not to bob along. 6/10
“Chemtrails Over the Country Club” is a reflection of Lana’s life and musical career before she became famous. The story is told with country-western motifs and extended metaphors pertaining to her younger career. While I wish I could appreciate this album, the music misses the mark. Perhaps she wasn’t concerned about the fans on this one, though. Ultimately, this album seems like a personal art piece for Lana. Maybe we simply aren’t meant to enjoy it all. I can’t deny its artistic quality; it just simply isn’t that good.