Lana Del Rey Revealed The Artwork Of Her Next Album And It Was Awkward
Yesterday, Lana Del Rey revealed the artwork and the tracklist of her next album, ‘Chemtrails Over the Country Club,’ on Instagram, and if it is a very ordinary thing to do before an album release, you have to ignore the comment section.
‘There’s always turmoil and upheaval and in the midst of it- there’s always beautiful music too
introducing my new album chemtrails over the country club,’ Lana wrote.
The album artwork is a black and white photograph of Lana and ten of her friends, sitting/standing around a bucolic round table, wearing romantic summer dresses and smiling. The scene is outdoor, it could be a country club, it’s a bit vintage and it could be anywhere in time. So what’s the problem? Lana felt the need to add this:
‘I also want to say that with everything going on this year! And no this was not intended-these are my best friends, since you are asking today. And damn! As it happens when it comes to my amazing friends and this cover yes there are people of color on this records picture and that’s all I’ll say about that
but thank you.
My beautiful friend Valerie from Del Rio Mexico, my dearest friend Alex and my gorgeous friend Dakota Rain as well as my sweetheart Tatiana.
these are my friends this is my life. We are all a beautiful mix of everything- some more than others which is visible and celebrated in everything I do. In 11 years working I have always been extremely inclusive without even trying to. My best friends are rappers my boyfriends have been rappers. My dearest friends have been from all over the place, so before you make comments again about a WOC/POC issue, I’m not the one storming the capital, I’m literally changing the world by putting my life and thoughts and love out there on the table 24 seven. Respect it.’
Isn’t it odd? Isn’t it an embarrassing comment? Why is Lana Del Rey justifying herself for a stupid photo? Isn’t she making things worse? ‘Yes, there are people of color on this records picture’? How awkward is this sentence? As if her ‘I am not racist because I have Black friends’ declaration was not enough, she continues with ‘My best friends are rappers my boyfriends have been rappers’… because rappers are supposed to be Black… And the end of the comment, ‘before you make comments again about a WOC/POC issue, I’m not the one storming the capital,’ has to be the most bizarre thing to say to describe a new album. Talk about being defensive before the fact.
Of course, Lana Del Rey was alluding to another Instagram post that had put her ‘in trouble’ back in May: she tried to defend herself against accusations that her lyrics were often regarded as anti-feminist, and name-checked a series of women of color such as Doja Cat, Ariana Grande, Camila Cabello, Cardi B, Kehlani, Nicki Minaj and Beyonce, noting that they could sing about ‘being sexy, wearing no clothes [and] cheating’ without facing the same criticism. The post had started a long controversy and even ridiculous ‘racist’ accusations, that Lana addressed by an obvious ‘I am not racist’ rebuttal…
This new post was obvious anticipation of a backlash, but since the photo seems to include a few women of color, why did she bring attention to something that wasn’t there? As expected, this triggered a deluge of comments on Instagram and Twitter, from the most normal reactions to the most malicious ones:
‘This is the most self-important, self-serving bs I’ve ever heard from her. Just release the music and promo like a normal person, wtf.’
‘queen i am here again to tell you I can’t keep doing this! i cannot defend you anymore, why do you keep doing this to yourself.’
‘Is this the Whitest post of all time?’
‘i also wish someone of lana’s caliber didn’t feel the need to defend herself against every little thing that’s said. she needs to just release her art and move on like everyone else.’
‘but why did she have to explain herself like this in the first place? Not one of y’all criticize her for not including at least 1 black person in this cover???’
‘jesus christ she sounds like her head is so far up her own ass she hasnt seen daylight in ten years’
‘Chemtrail”? She’s so inclusive she’s naming her album after a right-wing conspiracy theory’
‘Honey who tf is your publicist’
‘Drop the act @LanaDelRey. Ur not latina or a chola. Ur a rich wh^te wasp of Scottish/English descent born/raised in NY. You’ve manufactured a Chicana identity to launch/sustain your career + exploited the Chicano people & aesthetic long enough. FYI Del Rio is in Texas, not Mexico’
@azealiabanks the floor is yours
I haven’t seen any comments from Azealia yet, but if she decides to, Azealia will make short work of Lana’s post, as this happened before.
But we really live in the strangest times. Why does an artist feel the need to apologize and justify herself for an album cover, even before receiving any criticism? Why would a Grammy-nominated artist feel obliged to apologize to social media mobs? Have we reached a point in cancel culture when a white woman has to justify herself every time she puts something out? Or is Lana Del Rey trying to get more noticed than she is? After all, we all know there’s no bad publicity.
Meanwhile, here’s the tracklist of ‘Chemtrails Over the Country Club’
01 “White Dress”
02 “Chemtrails Over The Country Club”
03 “Tulsa Jesus Freak”
04 “Let Me Love You Like A Woman”
05 “Wild At Heart”
06 “Dark But Just A Game”
07 “Not All Who Wander Are Lost”
09 “Breaking Up Slowly”
10 “Dance Till We Die”
11 “For Free”