Lana Del Rey @ Hammersmith Apollo 20th May 2013

After having been 2nd row for the first night of Lana’s 2 night stint at Hammersmith Apollo, I made it my mission to be on the barrier this time round. It was a Monday and I fully expect the queue not to be mega like the Sunday (with the fact the Monday was a work/ school day). But I could not take the risk I wanted barrier for what could be the last time I see Lana until she announces another date in London. I then got to the venue at 6.15am which was rather early considering I was at Hammersmith the night before. Wristbands were given out earlier on and I was 15th in the queue. The whole experience was rather civilised and I met some amazing Lana fans. Come 6pm Lana’s dad made an appearance handing out gifts like Santa Claus. Everyone like a pack of wolves. I was lucky enough to get a signed copy of Lolita.

At 9pm the curtain came down and everyone started to go wild. What was to follow would be a roller coaster ride showcasing material from both Born To Die and Paradise. Lana Del Rey then gracefully took to the stage wearing a white dress like the prior night. It was then onto Cola. “So happy to be here” Del Rey said during the middle of this tune. Cola was ever so beautiful and it contained hypnotic lyrics which resulted in everyone singing along with every word. At the end Lana came into the pit and that is when I learnt people really loved her as people got really emotional. “It’s been too long since we’ve been here. I’m excited to see all of my friends” Del Rey said before going into another track from Paradise and this being Body Electric. This was an entrancing song along with powerful/ moody lyrics. My favourite part had to be the light chorus “I sing the body electric/ I sing the body electric, baby/ I sing the body electric/ I sing the body electric/ Sing the body electric/ Sing the body electric/ I’m on fire, sing that body electric”. The verses were also stunning and contagious as well. It was then onto Blue Jeans and this being a beautiful ballad. The strings were prominent in this superb song. Blue Jeans was delivered at a steady pace and had parts which were very upbeat. I really enjoyed the middle 8 when the the number became faster in pace “You went out every night/ And baby that’s alright/ I told you that no matter what you did I’d be by your side/ Cause I’ma ride or die/ Whether you fail or fly/ Well shit, at least you tried/ But when you walked out that door, a piece of me died/ I told you I wanted more-but that not what I had in mind/ I just want it like before/ We were dancin’ all night/ Then they took you away- stole you out of my life/ You just need to remember…”. Based on this song I would definitely love Del Rey until the end of time. “It’s amazing to be back here” Lana said before Born To Die. She went to the back of the stage in front of the massive monitor which displayed the cover art of the single and this then later displayed a motorway. Born To Die was a down tempo ballad aided by stunning lyrics which told the story of a doomed relationship. “You’re awesome” Del Rey said during the song as everyone was singing at the top of their lungs.

After Del Rey introduced the next number of the night being Carmen. Cue plenty of screams. Now this song tells the story of a doomed woman who sells her body on the streets. “Carmen, Carmen, staying up till morning/ Only seventeen, but she walks the streets so mean/ It’s alarming truly how disarming you can be / Eating soft ice cream, Coney Island queen” Its lyrics were actually quite intense and they were delivered to perfection. My favourite part had to be the middle 8 when the melody of the song changed. Carmen was an infectious steady paced track which everyone enjoyed. It was then onto the sexy and sultry Blue Velvet which was recorded for the 2012 H&M campaign. Lana made this swooning song her own and the use of strings made it completely magical. Originally sung by Tony Bennett, Del Rey owned this wonderful, swooning song. “One of the songs that I really enjoyed writing over the last year is for a new movie that’s out now” Lana mentioning introducing the penultimate tune of the evening as being Young And Beautiful. This was an epic sounding song which resulted in everyone singing along to every word. “Will you still love me when I’m no longer young and beautiful”. Del Rey then came into the pit for the beautiful ballad which was Without You. The lyrics were outstanding and infectious. The slow paced number sounded ever so enchanting. My favourite part was the middle 8 “We were two kids, just tryin’ to get out/ Live on the dark side of the American dream/ We would dance all night, play our music loud/ When we grew up nothing was what it seemed”. The pace there picked up then after it changed again. “I’m nothing without you” was one line in the song and it is true Lana’s fans mean so much to her. After Without You was over she sung a few lines of Knockin’ On Heavens Door.

Once over Lana left the stage only then for an intermission before the next track of the evening. What came up next was Ride which was a pop ballad which involved parental problems, alcohol consumption, and loneliness. When Del Rey took to the stage the place erupted with cheers. It started off slow then it progressed into something pacey when it got to the infectious chorus “I hear the birds on the summer breeze, I drive fast/ I am alone at midnight/ Been trying hard not to get into trouble but I/ I’ve got a war in my mind/ So I just ride/ Just ride”. This was an extraordinary tune which was phenomenally delivered. Summertime Sadness resulted in plenty of cheers. This was a slow tempo ballad which was also very entrancing at the same time as well. The lyrics were contagious infectious and everyone was singing along with every word. Next Lana Del Rey didn’t know whether to sing Burning Desire or Gods And Monsters. People wanted Burning Desire but as I heard that yesterday I was hoping on something new. What Del Rey opted for was Gods And Monsters. This tune was dark and eerie and delivered to perfection at the same time. I found this to have a steady pace and it was rather catching at the same time. “In the land of Gods and Monsters/ I was an Angel/ Living in the garden of evil/ Screwed up, scared, doing anything that I needed/ Shining like a fiery beacon”. It was really nice to hear something I had not heard perform live before. “I think we should do Video Games” Del Rey then said before singing the sultry and whimsical Video Games. The track was contagious and everyone sang along with every single word. Video Games was played at a steady pace and it was enchanting at the same time. “You’ve made it a very memorable night for me. I’m very happy to see fans that have become my friends over the last week. I hope I’ll see you again soon” Lana then said before ending with the epic National Anthem. As to be expected Del Rey came into the pit at the very end and greeted all of her fans. As for this song it was infectious and the lyrics just hook you in. Money is the anthem of success. The verses were stunning whilst the chorus was bright and breezy.

SET LIST

Cola
Body Electric
Blue Jeans
Born To Die
Carmen
Blue Velvet
Young And Beautiful
Without You

ENCORE

Ride
Summertime Sadness
Gods And Monsters
Video Games
National Anthem

OVERALL: Like the 1st night this was another excellent show. Comparing the 2 this was 1 song short as Lana chose not to sing American. It was nice being at the barrier just being mesmerised with her presence on stage.

Being barrier I was able to fully enjoy Kassidy and I will most definitely see them again in the future because they showcased some incredible tunes.

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