Art Deco (song)

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"Art Deco"
Song by Lana Del Rey
from the album Honeymoon
Recorded
Length 4:55
Label
Songwriter(s)
Producer(s)
Honeymoon track listing

"Art Deco" is a song by American recording artist Lana Del Rey for her fourth studio album, Honeymoon (2015). The song was written by Del Rey and Rick Nowels, and produced by Del Rey, Nowels, and Kieron Menzies. Lyrically, "Art Deco" describes a "queen of the party scene", some online media outlets notably speculated the song's lyrics to be about rapper Azealia Banks, though Del Rey has since declared this false. Musically, "Art Deco" employs a trap beat, and varying influences of jazz, trip hop, and hip hop. According to Lucas Villa of AXS, the song also features a noir aesthetic, as well as a "lady-sings-the-blues" aesthetic. Instrumentally, the song features synths, a saxophone, and percussion. Music critics generally gave "Art Deco" mixed reviews, with particular praise being directed at the song's diverse production, but criticism being placed on the song's lyrics.

Background and composition[edit]

Azealia Banks performing with a microphone in-hand.
Some media outlets believed the song to be about rapper Azealia Banks.

"Art Deco" is four minutes and fifty-five seconds long.[1] The song features a trap beat that has been described as "skeletal" by The Guardian's Kitty Empire, and "lazy" by Consequence of Sound's Nina Corcoran.[2][3] Billboard believed the song to showcase Del Rey's "fervor for "1920s American culture".[4] Nick Levine of Time Out noted a "dash of jazz" present on "Art Deco".[5] According to Lucas Villa of AXS, "Art Deco" synthesizes the jazz influence and noir aesthetic present on Honeymoon with various influences, such as Del Rey's "trap queen side" present on "High by the Beach", a "lady-sings-the-blues" aesthetic shown on "Honeymoon" and "Terrence Loves You", and Born to Die's "trip hop sounds". Villa described the song's instrumentation as including "[t]olling trip hop synths" in the song's intro, a saxophone section, and heavy percussion, which is present throughout the song. Lyrically, Villa believed the song to feature Del Rey telling a story about a "queen of the party scene".[6] Melissa Maerz of Entertainment Weekly called the song "syrup-screwed" and said that it has a "hip-hop edge".[7] Harley Brown of Spin believed Del Rey's vocal delivery on "Art Deco" to be "the most inviting it has ever been".[8]

"Art Deco" has been rumored, by online media outlets such as Billboard and Inquisitr, to be about rapper Azealia Banks, despite the apparent camaraderie between the two recording artists around the time of Honeymoon's release.[4][9] In an interview with NME, Del Rey dismissed the rumors, saying: "Definitely not. I have no idea where people got that from. I just don't know what the correlation is, that song is actually about a group of teenagers who go out every night."[10]

Critical reception[edit]

The song received generally positive reviews from music critics. Popjustice deemed "Art Deco" the "best non-single" of Honeymoon.[11] Patrick Ryan of USA Today called "Art Deco" a highlight of Honeymoon, and praised how the saxophone riffs present in the song added "jazz flair" to the song.[12] Lucas Villa of AXS deemed "Art Deco" a "decadent delight", and called it the "strongest" track on Honeymoon, with particular praise from Villa on the song's diverse influences.[6][13] Lindsay Zoldadz, writing for Vulture, praised the line "You're so Art Deco, out on the floor", calling it "the quintessential Lana Del Rey lyric".[14]

Amy Davidson of Digital Spy praised the song for adding an "interesting" aspect to Del Rey's persona on Honeymoon;[15] in a mixed review of "Art Deco", Jessica Hopper of Pitchfork called the song "a highlight [of Honeymoon] that curdles when the careless phrase 'You're so ghetto' comes out in the chorus", overall deeming it a "tonal misfire".[16] Similarly, Mike Wass of Idolator called the song "lyrically questionable", though praised the song for having "a slick groove and an instantly hummable chorus".[17] Peter Tabakis of Pretty Much Amazing gave the song a negative review, criticizing the rhyme of “you're so Art Deco” with “baby, you're so ghetto”.[18] Sam C. Mac of Slant also gave the song a negative review, calling it an "empty appropriation" of "sub-Gaga posturing".[13]

Credits and personnel[edit]

Credits adapted from the Honeymoon liner notes.[19]

  • Lana Del Rey – vocals, songwriting, production
  • Rick Nowels – songwriting, production, pads, mellotron, bass
  • Kieron Menzies – production, engineering, recording, mixing, drums, percussion, synth
  • Patrick Warren – orchestrations, strings, piano, synth
  • Trevor Yasuda – engineering, additional recording
  • Chris Garcia – engineering, additional recording
  • Adam Ayan – mastering
  • Leon Michels – saxophone, Juno pad
  • Derek "DJA" Allen – percussion

"Art Deco" was recorded and mixed at The Green Building in Santa Monica, California, and was mastered at Gateway Mastering in Portland, Maine.

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Honeymoon by Lana Del Rey on Apple Music". iTunes. Retrieved January 27, 2017. 
  2. ^ Empire, Kitty (September 20, 2015). "Lana Del Rey: Honeymoon review – cinematic glamour and skeletal beats". The Guardian. Retrieved January 18, 2017. 
  3. ^ Corcoran, Nina (September 24, 2015). "Lana Del Rey – Honeymoon". Consequence of Sound. Retrieved January 28, 2017. 
  4. ^ a b Payne, Chris (September 27, 2015). "The 10 Most Lana Del Rey Lyrics on Her New Album 'Honeymoon'". Billboard. Retrieved January 18, 2017. 
  5. ^ Levine, Nick (September 17, 2015). "Lana Del Rey – 'Honeymoon' album review". Time Out. Time Out Digital Ltd. Retrieved January 28, 2017. 
  6. ^ a b Villa, Lucas (September 21, 2015). "Review: Lana Del Rey's 'Art Deco' stands out as decadent delight on 'Honeymoon'". AXS. Retrieved January 24, 2017. 
  7. ^ Maerz, Melissa (September 21, 2015). "'Honeymoon' by Lana Del Rey: EW Review". Entertainment Weekly. Retrieved January 28, 2017. 
  8. ^ Brown, Harley (September 22, 2015). "Review: God Knows Lana Del Rey Tried on 'Honeymoon'". Spin. Prometheus Global Media. Retrieved January 28, 2017. 
  9. ^ Dolce, Michael (December 26, 2015). "LANA DEL REY ON AZEALIA BANKS DISS: IT'S "DEFINITELY NOT" TRUE". Inquisitr. Retrieved January 18, 2017. 
  10. ^ Horner, Al (December 11, 2015). "A Letter From Lana Del Rey – The Full NME Cover Interview". NME. Retrieved January 20, 2017. 
  11. ^ "The Top 33 Albums Of 2015". Popjustice. December 22, 2015. Retrieved January 18, 2017. 
  12. ^ Ryan, Patrick (September 18, 2015). "Album review: Lana Del Rey's 'Honeymoon'". USA Today. Retrieved January 25, 2017. 
  13. ^ a b Mac, Sam C. (September 22, 2015). "Lana Del Rey: Honeymoon". Slant. Retrieved January 24, 2017. 
  14. ^ Zoldadz, Lindsay (September 21, 2015). "With Honeymoon, Lana Del Rey Has Become Our Most Independent-Minded Pop Star". Vulture. Retrieved January 28, 2017. 
  15. ^ Davidson, Amy (September 18, 2015). "Lana Del Rey's Honeymoon album: A track-by-track first listen review". Digital Spy. Retrieved January 28, 2017. 
  16. ^ Hopper, Jessica (September 21, 2015). "Lana Del Rey: Honeymoon Album Review". Pitchfork. Retrieved January 28, 2017. 
  17. ^ Wass, Mike (September 21, 2015). "Lana Del Rey's 'Honeymoon': Album Review". Idolator. Hive Media. Retrieved January 29, 2017. 
  18. ^ Tabakis, Peter (September 18, 2015). "A Disappointing 'Honeymoon'". Pretty Much Amazing. Retrieved January 29, 2017. 
  19. ^ Honeymoon (booklet). Lana Del Rey. London, United Kingdom; Santa Monica, California: Polydor Records, Interscope Records. 2015. 

External links[edit]