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Showing 1-10 of 422 reviews(Verified Purchases). See all 518 reviews
on January 19, 2015
This review isn't a poetic, overly complicated magazine-style review. I heard "Gods and Monsters" on American Horror Story (performed by Jessica Lange) and completely flipped for the song. I thought it was brilliant, seductive and catchy. I was thrilled to find out it was a "real" song so I purchased the album. In my past, music consumed me and told stories along my life. A trauma happened and I literally stopped listening to music for the most part for the last 10 years. I truly missed it but couldn't find an artist or album to charge me up the way music used to. This album gave me the music-rebirth that I needed. I LOVE every song. I can turn it up in my car and let it consume me. I'm a 38 year old mother so I am happy that Amazon sent me the "non-explicit" version so I can play it in front of my kids (and then log into prime to listen to the explicit version when they are sleeping). I haven't felt this way about an artist/album in ages and I am excited to give her other albums a try. Hopefully they are as captivating to me as this one is. (My personal favs are "Gods and Monsters" and "American"). Enjoy!
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on December 3, 2012
First Lana Del Rey was "Born to Die", now she is in "Paradise". This 8-track EP is a consistent continuation of her debut album. "Paradise" is current but without that glossy, mainstream production. And yet it's old-fashioned but without sounding dated. "Born to Die" quickly became my favorite album of 2012 and I couldn't wait to get my hands on "Paradise"! There is only one song that doesn't grab my full attention, "Yayo" - probably because I've never been a fan of jazz music in my life. Lana does what she can with the ballad, it's messy in parts but Lana's voice is in fine form and I can't help but have a fondness for when she sings, "Let me put on a show for you tiger..." The first single, "Ride" - we find Lana reflecting on the darker side of her personality and the depths of loneliness, "I hear the birds on the summer breeze, I drive fast - I am alone at midnight. Been trying hard not to get into trouble but I've got a war in my mind, so I just ride..." On "Cola" which is her most x-rated song to date, she proudly admits she's got "a taste for men who are older..." And I love how Lana uses string arrangements all throughout the album just like she did on "Born to Die". There's even a gorgeous, classy cover of "Blue Velvet" which proves Lana has a lot of emotion and soul in her voice. "Gods and Monsters" is the best song on the album which explores the negative aspects of fame while "Bel Air" is the flipside, it has an airy, dream-like quality about how fame and success are the ultimate pay off. "American" is a beautiful ballad, easily one of Lana's most confessional songs so far. "Body Electric" didn't really resonate with me at first, it's strange, disjointed, and a little repetitive on the chorus but I've really grown to like this surprise gem, and I love the line, "Whitman is my daddy, Monaco's my mother, diamonds are my bestest friend. Heaven is my baby, suicide's her father, opulence is the end..." I really enjoyed this EP. Lana Del Rey is the breakout artist of the year for me. Her music and voice is so unique, there is no one like her...she's in a league all her own and thank goodness for that! I highly recommend "Paradise".
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on June 13, 2017
Less songs than a regular LP, I feel is the real strength of Lana's Paradise EP. All of the songs seem to connect since there's only 8 songs, but these are really good 8 songs! My favorites - American, Ride, God & Monsters and Cola. Least favorite is 'Blue Velvet', however, I don't mind hearing it.

Lana states that this is a companion piece to 'Born To Die (BTD)', however, in my opinion, BTD is a bit more 'pop' compared to 'Paradise', and I actually prefer this record over BTD.

So do yourself a favor and buy the record, put it on the turntable, dim the lights and let Lana take you into her Paradise!
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on October 28, 2016
I love her...she's gorgeous, and has a beautiful voice...but, she needs to mix it up a little bit. For the most part, her songs sound too much alike. I love them, but when they all sound like a slightly different variation of the same gets kind of old. There are a few good songs on this album, though. I still love her and I will still buy her next album...I just hope she spices it up a little.
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Released a few months after the sublime "Born to die", "Paradise" enhanced the mystery about the dark angel better known as Lana Del Rey. Deeper, darker and dirtier than its predecessor, each of the EP's 8 songs is utterly mesmerising and addictive, making it a perfect companion to her glorious debut. "Ride", "Cola" and "Gods and monsters" are arguably the highlights, but the absolute standout track on here is the cinematic "Body electric", a euphoric, Bond-esque ode with compelling lyrics and a matching melody, inspired by the same-titled poem of American poet Walt Whitman. "And I will show that nothing can happen more beautiful than death", he writes on "Starting from Paumanok". Surely LDR identifies with him. Listening to these songs feels exactly as if death is the only salvation from the troubles of one's mortal existence. With this year's "Ultraviolence", a diverse, slow-burner of an album, Lana Del Rey proved that she is an adamant artist, but with "Paradise" she showed her artistic intentions. Her "Paradise" feels more like "Paradise lost". But it is heavenly, nevertheless.
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on May 3, 2017
I only got this for the Gods and Monsters song. I do like the other songs, too. I feel that the lyrics aren't good. Not just because of the swearing. The big winner is the instruments and melody. They are very calming/ unique. Her Honeymoon album is better, in case you have to pick.
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on January 25, 2013
"Paradise" is not a complete new album, but rather a continuation of "Born To Die". So, it is not significantly different, and that's not a bad thing, since "BTD" is awesome. Out of the 8 tracks, the vocals, arrangements and song structures of 5 of them are basically similar to those on "BTD". I am referring to the first 4 tracks, along with "Gods And Monsters". The first track, "Ride", is my favorite. It has a slow dramatic buildup to a great chorus, and it is backed by a fine string arrangement. Very well done, almost like a Phil Spector production. "Blue Velvet" differs from these 5 only in that it is a cover of an old song. Otherwise it sounds pretty much like Lana's other tracks. She does the classic song justice with a beautiful low-key, low-pitched vocal. Of the 2 remaining tracks, "Yayo" is my least favorite on the album. The melody is too odd and formless, the vocal sounds strained at times, and the arrangement is pretty bare. The final track "Bel Air" opens with some rather bright piano lines, which at first made me think that it might be too conventional and happy for Lana's repertoire, which leans toward the serious, even gloomy. But it develops into an unusual rising and falling melody with some striking chord changes, and the harmonized vocals are very pretty. It is actually the only successfully "different" song on "Paradise", since I consider "Yayo" not to be a success.

What is it about Lana's work that both attracts me and makes me uncomfortable? The answer is that there is an attitude of despair that pervades her work. The attraction of despair is that it frees you from doing the hard work of trying to be responsible and productive. It's easier to choose a life of immediate pleasure and gratification. This goes against the accepted worldview of our society; and that makes it forbidden and therefore all the more alluring. Here are examples of what I am talking about. In "Ride", she sings, " I just ride/just ride...Drink all day and we talk till dark." Then, in "American": "You make me crazy, you make me wild...Drive fast...I don't really want the rest." In "Cola": "He's making me crazy/I come alive/All he wants to do is party." In "Body Electric": "Diamonds are my bestest friend" and "We get crazy every Friday night." In "Gods And Monsters": "I'm living like Jim Morrison/headed towards a f***ed up holiday...It's innocence lost...looking to get f***ed hard...I don't really wanna know what's good for me." And finally, in "Bel Air": "You've got a flair for the violentest kind of love anywhere out there." You see my point? Her characters are aimless, drinkers, crazy, wild, materialistic, ruined, nymphos, reckless. All the things we aren't supposed to be. But somehow, Lana's easy frankness makes it sound like a reasonable alternative lifestyle. This may be her crowning achievement! There are 2 other related themes on this CD that deserve mention. In 4 songs Lana sings about "riding" or "driving". And in 4 songs she mentions "dad", "daddy" or "father". To me, riding is a metaphor for escape, and the image of dad is a metaphor for security. So these 2 images suggest to me more avoidance of that dreaded responsible, productive life: "riding" to run away from it, and keeping "dad" close for support, just in case you can't achieve it.
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on January 11, 2013
Paradise is an "afterthought" on Born to Die. It has less overbearing production with more synth and electric guitar sounds and a more understated orchestra. The vocal style is also less dynamic than BTD so the pace seems slower. However, LDR's sense of melody and vocal drama is still very strong. I would give it five stars on the basis of quality, but I ended up giving four stars for quantity. Only two or three more songs would make a full release, and of the many awesome leaked/unreleased songs revealed during 2012, there were some that fit the mood of the EP. Further, two songs on Paradise are technically beforethoughts. One is "Blue Velvet", a faithful cover of a famous old song, which showcases her voice in a smooth/controlled mode. Another is "Yayo" from "Lana Del Ray aka Lizzy Grant", a pre-debut (?) album commercially unavailable for reasons I've never understood. Paradise's Yayo is faithful to its original but more stripped-down and echoey. It has a jazzier and more emotional singing style than the rest of Paradise and makes for a really great song; however, does re-visiting Yayo mean a re-release of "... aka Lizzy Grant" is coming (a 5-star release), or is it some kind of salvage operation?

The new songs on Paradise, written after BTD, seem movie inspired in their feel. They are strangely similar to each other, and are impressively distinct in style from BTD. Fans and reviewers have different opinions of what's strong and weak, which I take to be a sign of interesting work. "Ride" is like a laid-back but amply orchestrated country/folk song. Check out the Ride video on youtube, one of the more controversial videos of 2012; also google "indexmagazine lizzy grant" for an interview that might suggest she had projects like the Ride video and the Paradise musical style in mind back in 2008. "American" might be a make-up song to the United States with whom she's had less media exposure and more nasty reviews than in Europe. However, her US relationship seems less about fans that love her and anti-fans that hate her but more a strong fan-base vs. some US musical establishments/pundits trying to dismiss her. To me, this is the most interesting kind of polarization an artist can have. So, imo, "American" is best considered just a love song to Americans, United States included, but also the entire continent (she's big in Mexico and Brazil). "Cola" has that wonderful line we were warned about 2 months prior to the release of Paradise (youtube Paradise Edition preview). Along with that lyric, which will never be heard in a mall, the song has some excellent relaxed skatting (wish it had more). "Body Electric" was first heard on youtube as a raw and over-the-top live performance from her 2012 tour. While many fans prefer it that way, the studio version still grips the listener with her vocals, ominous strings, dramatic (symphonic-style) drumming, and understated Hawaiian metal guitars. It differs from the live the way a studio version should, imo. "Gods and Monsters" is a (seemingly) angry, disillusioned song about "innocence lost" (aka debauchery). Some media reviews suggest the song refers to her recent life, but I think the situations probably just interest her artistically (she has "Nabokov Whitman" tattooed on her arm, afterall). Finally, "Bel Air" closes with a pretty direct acoustic-style tune elaborated by a memorable piano background. It's mellow and theatrical at the same time and was co-written with a movie-score composer that she knows (Daniel Heath). The whole EP is on Spotify (and some on youtube), so you can make up your own mind. My overall opinion is that Lana is well worth casting a commercial vote for, if you want to see pop music go more her way.
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on December 1, 2012
I love Lana Del Rey's music, so I love this EP. I'm curious why she didn't do a whole album because she has enough good songs on Youtube that either haven't been released, were on her first album that was shelved, or on the Lizzy Grant album she bought back to fill it out nicely. There are probably 30 Lana Del Rey/Lizzy Grant/May Jailer/Sparkle Jump Rope Queen/etc. songs on youtube that either weren't on "Born To Die" or "Paradise". (They are all listed under Lana Del Rey, regardless of what she was going by when she recorded them.)

"Yayo" is listed in the urban dictionary as being cocaine, so I'm guessing that is the underlying theme to what is going on in the song. "Yayo" was characterized in a previous review as a re-release, but it actually has been re-done with added music, as was "The Lucky Ones" on the "Born To Die" extended edition. When she sings, "You have to take me right now from this dark trailer park", it isn't just a fantasy lyric - she did actually live in a trailer park at one time.

I like her cover of "Blue Velvet", I just wish she would have added a refrain in her lovely higher pitch. I'm guessing the commercial tie-in may have hampered her flexibility, although she did say she was going to sing low more often so people (critics?) would take her more seriously. Lana, if you are out there, don't change a thing - think Roy Orbison. He sang high when he wanted to and didn't sound like anyone else either, and he had a pretty good career.

"Cola" and "Gods and Monsters" are both good songs that have explicit lyrics. Lana talks dirty but doesn't sound dirty, if you know what I mean. OK, maybe a little. In "American" she not only shows off a little distinctive vocal flexibility I haven't heard in her songs before, but she mentions Bruce Springsteen like she does in one of her other songs. I don't think it is a coincidence that his breakout album was "Born To Run" and hers is "Born To Die".

The title of "Body Electric" comes straight from a Walt Whitman poem "I Sing The Body Electric", which was written in 1855 before the word "electric" had entered common usage. Like much poetry and many song lyrics, I guess it means whatever you want it to mean. Love the song, and whatever the "body electric" is, I'm singing it as I write this.

"Bel Air" is just kind of there, but in all fairness, rather than give it a chance I always start the CD over when it comes on to get back to "Ride", the first single and arguably the best song on the EP. Much like "Video Games", I always have the urge to play this song over as soon as it ends. Keep in mind that the actual song is only part of the "Ride" experience. There is an official ten minute video on Youtube in which she provides the prologue and epilogue to the song with music-backed narration. It really is brilliant.

To sum it up, buy this CD if you like Lana Del Rey, or are a fan of contraltos in general, like I am. If you don't already have "Born To Die", get "Born To Die - Paradise Edition" which contains both the extended edition of "Born To Die" and this EP.
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on May 26, 2015
To me this is LANA DEL REY'S best record hands down . Yes BORN TO DIE is excellent & the hype on ULTRAVIOLENCE with Black Keys Dan Auerbach producing (and overshadowing) was huge but overblown . These tracks are SO good I absolutely LOVE IT , every song shows LANA'S waycool vibe unobstructed by anything . Everytime I hear it I like it better & notice something new . I like to put it on "repeat" or "shuffle" mode since one listen is never enough ! Standout tracks to me are RIDE , BODY ELECTRIC , AMERICAN but I am crazy about ALL of them !!! Granted it is an 8 song EP but WELL worth the $$$ in my opinion . She is the new Queen of American Pop-Rock & this record is her finest hour so far . Just buy it & you'll see it has ethereal appeal that is primal , exotic & downright sexy :-))) HARDIE MCGEHEE - singer/songwriter Birmingham AL
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