Lana Del Rey is one of the most celebrated musicians to have emerged over the last decade. The singer-songwriter has carved herself a niche in music like no other in contemporary pop music. It has seen the esteemed artist become a certified festival headliner the world over. Listening to her isolated vocals on the track, ‘Video Games’ proves why she has become a modern-day icon.
Del Rey real name, Elizabeth Grant, has released six albums to date with her seventh, Chemtrails over the Country Club, being due in 2021. Her journey began with her independent Lana Del Ray album in 2010, a record which arrived before the artist changed her stage name from ‘Ray’ to ‘Rey’ and, since 2012’s Born To Die, she has been on an unstoppable path to stardom.
The stand out track on Born To Die, which introduced a large portion of her fanbase to her work, is the irresistibly beautiful, ‘Video Games’. The song plucked her out of relative obscurity, to suddenly becoming on her way to the international sensation she is today. Her breakout song was not just a sensation with critics but, was an even bigger commercial hit across Europe.
‘Vido Games’ reached number one in Germany as well as top ten positions in Austria, Belgium, France, Ireland, the Netherlands, Switzerland and the United Kingdom which set Del Rey’s career into the stratosphere. Suddenly, the world became her oyster. The track is unarguably one of the finest singles of the 2010s and managed to establish her as one of the defining artists of the era.
When asked by Q magazine why she thought people resonated so strongly with this song, which had seen the years of hard work finally pay off, Del Rey replied: “I know that it’s a beautiful song and I sing it really low, which might set it apart. I played it for a lot of people (in the industry) when I first wrote it and no one responded. It’s like a lot of things that have happened in my life during the last seven years, another personal milestone. It’s myself in song form.”
There is a timelessness to Del Rey’s voice which immediately captivates the listener and makes her stand out from the rest of the pack. Whilst the charts at this time were dominated by artists chasing the same sound, Del Rey chose to operate on her terms and hark back to pop music from yesteryear — which on a first listen, stops you in your tracks.
As the years go on, that initial awe-struck feeling that comes from listening to ‘Video Games’ naturally erodes with every listen — the isolated vocal version, however, recaptures that magic which made Del Rey such an intriguing artist in the first place.