Most helpful positive review
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The best record of 2014?
on 14 November 2014
I certainly haven't heard better. She could so easily have followed 'Born to Die' with a couple of good singles to buoy up a ho-hum second album, but this is a gorgeous and superbly sustained collection of songs that develop Lana's 'dissolute prom queen' persona to stunning effect.
There is a nagging sense that the album hasn't done quite as well as it should have, perhaps because the lead singles were ill-chosen: 'West Coast' certainly grows in this context, but 'Ultraviolence' is one of the lesser songs here. They are both swamped by the majesty of 'Shades of Cool', 'Sad Girl', and the quite fabulous 'Brooklyn Baby'. 'Pretty When You Cry' sounds a bit like filler, admittedly, and could signal a long tail of diminishing returns in the second half, but it really doesn't - 'Money, Power, Glory', 'F*d My Way Up to the Top' and the lovely ballad 'Old Money' push the quality bar right back up.
Seriously, you need to have this. Like me, you will soon have it on repeat with a bottle of wine, bellowing along with a great big grin on your face.