Review: Lana Del Rey at The El Rey Theatre

Practice makes perfect, and Lana Del Rey made sure that the ample time to  fix her live performance skills after the supposed SNL debacle did not go in vain. Warming up for the road ahead with a three-day residency at The El Rey Theatre in Los Angeles, CA, Del Rey sold out the venue and could not pick a better opportunity to premiere her refined live approach.

Adorned with palm trees, rose bushes and a projection screen displaying random images akin to her infamous music video style, the stage set-up of the show provoked the phrase “That’s so Lana.” Del Rey recruited a strings section in her band to accomplish the cinematic sound of the album Born To Die.

Intending to grasp the audience immediately, Del Rey started off the show with her hit single “Blue Jeans”; an excellent effort and a far cry from her critically bashed SNL performance. The audience tried to figure out what song Del Rey was performing after “Blue Jeans”, but it turns out that it was a brand new track titled “Body Electric”.

Though the raw power of the hip hop-influenced drum programming in Born To Die was largely absent due to the fact that there was no drummer in the band, performances of songs such as the title track were noticeably stripped down as the strings section and guitarists handled the main atmosphere of the show.

Not much for audience interaction except for vocal assistance during songs and a few “thank you”‘s in between, Del Rey hammered through an incredibly brief set with more songs from Born To Die such as “Lolita”, “Summertime Sadness”, “Carmen”, “Million Dollar Man” and a stirring  ”Video Games”.

Before bringing it home with the patriotic “National Anthem” (with American flags scattered in the crowd), Del Rey made sure the audience knew this was the last song, capping her set at around 40 minutes. Perhaps as a sign of her dedicated fan base, the audience was satisfied with no encore and proceeded to leave the venue peacefully.

Del Rey could have added a few more songs to her set, but overall she executed an impressive performance that while in it’s rawest, near-acoustic form, was able to fully showcase her captivating voice.

Did you attend the show? Let us know what yo thought in the comment section.

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