These are just my opinions, we can all disagree :)
Lol just kidding fight me
1. "BODY ELECTRIC" (Paradise, 2012)
Not sure whether they play this song when you enter Dante's Inferno or the Seventh Heaven, but sometimes you hear a song and just wonder how something like that can come out of a pink-grey jelly mass inside of someone's skull. Turn up your volume.
For reference: "I sing the body electric/ The armies of those I love engirth me and I engirth them/They will not let me off till I go with them, respond to them/And discorrupt them, and charge them full with the charge of the soul." -Walt Whitman
2. "PAWN SHOP BLUES" (Lana Del Ray a.k.a Lizzy Grant, 2010)
In "Born to Die," she sings that "sometimes love is not enough," and "PSB" contains a greater contemplation of this theme that really ought to interest people more, especially people who say that Lana's a bad role model who's always self-effacing in the name of some love interest.
"In the name of higher consciousness / I let the best man I knew go....I said it's nice to love and be loved, but I'd rather/ know what God knows." Like no one talks about how she majored in metaphyics and quite frankly that upsets me?
3. "GODS AND MONSTERS" (Paradise, 2012)
"Shining like a fiery beacon..."
I think I'm just drawn to all her damned apostate songs
You can't find anyone else in modern songwriting who can talk about such lofty concepts with such confidence and abandon, I think she read a lot of Nietzsche but that's just my theory
4. "NATIONAL ANTHEM" (Born to Die, 2012)
I have a soft spot in my heart for this song since it's the first song of hers I heard, and it was unlike any pop song I'd ever encountered before, and I was 14 years old, it was 2 am, and I had an iTunes giftcard to burn and listened to the whole thing in one night. It's also Lana at her most lyrically tight, and as an early modern history major I just felt personally flattered that she would use the Elizabethan phrase "How now?" as a hip hop lyric. From the instrumentals also you can tell how this album cut like a knife through pop music.
5. "RIDE" (Paradise, 2012)
In the credits for the music video, which caused controversy for accusations that Lana glorifies prostitution, the name of her character is revealed to be "Artist." I think "Ride" is probably Lana's peak moment of artistic manifesto-making, and its artistic, aesthetic world qualities really make you question if she has so many (male) critics who hate her because her music is bad or because she dares to be a female auteur and assert such a strong presence of herself in her music. Also if you click forward during the monologue to get to the song, you are excommunicated and cut off from God.
6. "BEL AIR" (Paradise, 2012)
7. "MONEY POWER GLORY" (Ultraviolence, 2014)
Whenever she releases the tracklist for a new album, I always think, based on the titles, okay this is where she devolves into cliche, but nope, nope, nope, this song is divine, the chorus soars over the earth like a seraphim on cocaine.
8. "LUCKY ONES" (Born to Die, 2012)
My wedding song?
9. "NOIR" (Unreleased)
It's kind of terrifying?
10. "OLD MONEY" (Ultraviolence, 2014)
She took some flak for using the main melody from "What is a Youth," one of my favorite songs, but people seem to fail to remember that main melody is the ONLY GOOD PART of that song. Lana ditches the disjointed pseudo-medieval galliard bits and follows the initial melody with something it deserves - transcendental and forward-moving.
11. "AMERICAN" (Paradise, 2012)
Try to locate this song geographically. Try it. You can do it with her other songs - lyrics aside, "Yayo" sounds like Vegas, "Lolita" sounds like Miami, "National Anthem" sounds like DC. But the Paradise EP, mainly, has so many songs that seem to take place in an indeterminate place that resembles America, but America really can't compare.
12. "GO GO DANCER" (Unreleased)
The key change in the intro is enough to make me give up on college and get an account on sugarbabies.com
13. "PROM SONG GONE WRONG" (Unreleased)
Not that I ever had a serious crush in second period
14. "SALVATORE" (Honeymoon, 2015)
Okay this is a bit painful, because it's a song that had so much potential but she had to fuck it up by singing about ice cream and chicken cacciatore but GOD DAMMIT every time I heart it, I'm back in Italy, GOD DAMMIT, GOD DAMMIT
15. "TERRENCE LOVES YOU" (Honeymoon, 2015)
She had nerve putting this song out while David Bowie was still alive, since the title combined with the "Space Oddity" lyrics seems to refer to his dead brother. But she gets points for experimenting with jazz, and like in Salvatore, going for a Continental feel rather than an American one.
16. "DAMN YOU" (Unreleased)
It's just the whole song sounds like the inside of a crystal? And it feels the first time you put on those sparkly heels for the summer?
17. "BOARDING SCHOOL" (Unreleased)
You can hear the influence of surf rock and Blondie in this ironic (not ironic?) depiction of a drugged-out, sexed-up, high-stakes boarding school.
18. "DIET MOUNTAIN DEW" (Born to Die, 2012)
Changing the "sexual orientation" option on my profile to "this piano riff". Pro tip: listen at 2:14 for the tiny glockenspeil sparkle "ting" jsut barely audible under her voice.
19. "MAHA MAHA" (Unreleased)
If she actually did more stuff with Indian sonic influences I would die
20. "YOUNG AND BEAUTIFUL" (The Great Gatsby, 2013)
Would be higher if I weren't so tired of it:
Fun fact: this song was actually kept from winning an Oscar by mysterious people who sent Academy letters saying it was ineligible. It was really shady (Lorde?)