Lana Del Rey is an artist not without mystery. She started performing in 2006, has gone by a range of different names in her early years, and sits on piles of unreleased tracks and B-sides that constantly get fans lusting for more. With each of her albums radiating a slightly different aesthetic, Del Rey appeals to a cult fanbase as well as the masses.
Although the songstress has been known to get a bit irritated with the masses constantly digging up unreleased tracks, specifically in an Instagram live where she mentioned it a few years ago, the singer has simply a vast volume of work that people can’t help but appreciate.
Beyond the unreleased, Del Rey’s albums tend to be no-skips, which leaves even some of the best songs that make it to the albums left out of the spotlight. You basically can’t go wrong when you put her on shuffle.
We’ve all heard ‘Summertime Sadness’. We’ve all heard ‘Young and Beautiful’. I am not here to talk about what comes on when your sorority sister gets the aux cord. Lana Del Rey’s popular tracks are popular for a reason – because they’re genuinely great – but there’s so much more beneath the surface of her discography.
Del Rey is nothing if not a chameleon, moving between different eras and aesthetics effortlessly. From her still-unreleased early album Lana Del Rey A.K.A. Lizzy Grant to her leaked A$AP Rocky collaboration (no, not the Lust For Life feature you’re thinking of), Lana Del Rey has a lot up her sleeve.
The brilliant Lana Del Rey songs:
10. ‘Million Dollar Man’
Starting off simple, ‘Million Dollar Man’ is a classic of the Born to Die album, but it often gets drowned out by some of the other, more popular tracks. This sultry, vintage sound encapsulates her brand from that time period, but it simply doesn’t get the attention it probably deserves.
Perhaps because of the slowed down, low-key melody, it tends to fade into the background. But it’s a great song that flows with her alto register and brings a bit of balance to the album.
9. ‘Music to Watch Boys To’
This song did get a little bit of hype, but not as much as it deserved. The Honeymoon album was more chilled out in general, especially as it followed the smash success of both Born to Die and Ultraviolence.
This track has that classic orchestral accent that screams Lana Del Rey, but it also has a sense of lighthearted sway that teases the sound to come in her Lust For Life era.
8. ‘Mermaid Motel’
Getting into the unreleased tracks, ‘Mermaid Motel’ is one of the long-foretold songs off Lizzy Grant. It’s truly a shame that this album only saw the light of day as a leak because this is one of its many fantastic songs.
‘Mermaid Motel’ offers heavy drums, a slowed-down pace, and that flirtatious flit in her voice that Lana puts on so well to this day.
7. ‘Queen of Disaster’
This song has gone viral as a sound on TikTok, so it’s no wonder why so many people are rushing to get their hands on the full track. Even though it sits atop the gen Z favourites list, it’s been around for quite a while.
This fun, adorable tune swings with the lyrics “You’ve got me spinning like a ballerina,” which is exactly what this track makes you want to do.
6. ‘Yes to Heaven’
Seldom can this be said of the versatile artist, but this song doesn’t quite sound like Del Rey, which might be why it’s still unreleased. Nonetheless, this song is beautiful and simple, with a simple guitar and stunning vocals.
This is definitely one to cry to, which is nothing to be ashamed of. Lana Del Rey can do that to people.
5. ‘Kinda Outta Luck’
There’s a somewhat clear reason – to the bonafide Lana stans, anyway – why this song didn’t make its way onto one of the albums. This Quentin Tarantino twang and fun persona that this track puts on might be playful, but it doesn’t exactly fit with any of the albums she’s released.
This song is the perfect track to bump when you’re driving through the desert with your sunglasses on — or something like that.
4. ‘BBM Baby’
This is yet another song that doesn’t quite fit into the broader album landscape but is nonetheless a bop. ‘BBM Baby’ is a true bubblegum pop jam, complete with that early 2000’s lyrical reference to BBM instant messenger.
Here, Lana del Rey goes into her higher register, which is always a unique sound for her to show off — and it works exceptionally well with the carefree tone of the song.
3. ‘Serial Killer’
‘Serial Killer’ almost fits better within the landscape of ‘Kinda Outta Luck’ with its classic lyrical drama and sassy persona. It’s one of the most popular of her unreleased songs, spawning countless Tumblr graphics, YouTube edits, and fake merch.
This is also a song that Lana routinely performs live on tour, which is one of the reasons why fans know it as well as they do.
2. ‘This is What Makes Us Girls (Demo Version)’
This is what I like to call a half-unreleased song because although the standard version is readily available on all streaming platforms, the original demo brings an entirely new sound that so many people have been missing.
By bringing in some of the classic string backing and picking up the pace, this song is completely transformed, so much so that you can enjoy both versions in their own right.
1. ‘Ridin’ ft. A$AP Rocky
At long last, we arrive at the fated A$AP collab. What’s not to love about this pair? Although they have made music together since their original days of sneaking appearances in one another’s videos and putting together this genius track, nothing beats the ingenious mix that is ‘Ridin’.
From Lana Del Rey’s flirty persona to A$AP’s smooth chorus, something about this just works like no other. Like the YouTube comments echo, if this was released to streaming platforms, it’d no doubt be a hit.