Million Dollar Man
Label: Polydor Records
Who is Lana Del Rey? The 'net nearly imploded in 2011 with bloggers trying to figure that out. And judging by her debut, even Lana (born Lizzy Grant) seems perplexed. Born to Die attempts to cast her as the sultry seductress, ever lusting after fame and the boy with the "cocaine heart." But past that pretty-girl pout is nothing but a lost and lovesick ingénue: Think Nancy Sinatra sans the boots. But this juxtaposition works, mostly in the top half ("Born to Die," "Video Games," "Blue Jeans"), as she rolls her smoky pipes around symphonic strings and trip-hop beats, like one of Tricky's sirens.