In her first live performance of 2017, Lana Del Rey played a secret show at Texas conference SXSW. The singer debuted her most recent release, “Love” for the Austin crowd, and played eight other fan favourites.
The surprise set at the Apple Music space was made known just the day before – despite the last-minute reveal, the crowds of people attempting to see Del Rey were huge. Those able to get into the event saw the singer open with the Ultraviolence track “Cruel World”. Other tracks came from across her four studio albums, including “Video Games”, “Blue Jeans”, “Ride” and “Born to Die”. Del Rey also played guitar for “Yayao”, and closed her set with her latest dreamy hit “Love” – her first solo musical output since Honeymoon, two years ago.
The otherworldly video for “Love” came as a surprise, and sees the musician front a lounge band across galaxies and different dimensions, while a group of teenagers explore extra-terrestrial worlds – and, she still manages to emulate her much-loved, classic 60s and 70s vibe.
Del Rey recently spoke about her upcoming fifth studio album on Jo Whiley’s Radio 2 show. She described the release, set to drop later this year, as “more socially aware”, with the current political climate in mind. The turbulent political arena is a major focus for her right now – aside from music, the artist recently participated in a “binding ritual” with witches to see Donald Trump out of the White House.
“I started out thinking that the whole record was gonna have a sort of a ’50s-’60s feeling, kind of some kind of Shangri-Las, early Joan Baez influences," she also told Whiley about the album. “But I don’t know, as the climate kept on getting more heated politically, I found lyrically everything was just directed towards that. So because of that, the sound just got really updated, and I felt like it was more wanting to talk to the younger side of the audience that I have... it’s kind of a global feeling.”