Wednesday, April 18, 2012

The Dame's 2012 Playlist: Lana Del Rey "Off to the Races"

The main reason I allowed all songs released in 2012, not just the "singles," to be eligible for my year-end list is because of "Off to the Races," a track so good I couldn't disqualify it because some bonehead executive decided not to release it. I will admit that I was initially dismissive of Ms. Del Rey, not completely understanding the hype surrounding "Video Games" and most of the sneak peaks from Born to Die. Actually, I believe my exact words were, "Wake me up when she does a dance track." Despite my reservations, I gave her album a listen when it came out, and, color me surprised, I actually liked a good portion of it. The album's standout, without a doubt, is this five minute magnum opus. From the moment Lana moans that first lyric, "My old man is a bad man," I was enamored. I love the almost sinister vibe the song gives off, which, combined with its already frank sexuality ("He likes to watch me in the glass room, bathroom"), makes for an intriguing pairing. I've mentioned this before, but when I listen to music, I rarely listen to lyrics. Usually, I base my opinions on how the song makes me feel. "Off to the Races" is no different, but the lyrics here add even more texture to a song I already can't get out of my subconscious. Lana Del Rey hasn't given me a dance track like a requested. Instead, she has given me something more than I could have ever hoped for: a living, breathing, unequivocal masterpiece.

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