Capping an online controversy that has played out over the past few days, Lana Del Rey dropped a new spoken-word piece titled “Patent Leather Do-Over,” featuring music by Jack Antonoff, late Saturday. The singer sparked attention with a forcefully worded Thursday post in which she wrote she was being accused by critics of “glamorizing abuse” and held to a different standard than fellow female artists like Doja Cat, Ariana Grande, Camila Cabello, Cardi B, Kehlani, Nicki Minaj and Beyonce, who “have had number ones with songs about being sexy, wearing no clothes, f—ing, cheating, etc.” (you can read all about that here.)
In a follow-up Saturday post, the singer said the new piece would appear on “Behind the Iron Gates — Insights From an Institution,” the second of two spoken-word LPs she has recorded, and which she says is due in March; the singer previously announced her first spoken word album “Violet Bent Backwards Over the Grass,” as well as a follow-up to her Grammy-nominated album “Norman F—ing Rockwell,” which features extensive collaboration with Antonoff.
In “Patent Leather Do-Over,” Del Rey talks about the late British poet Sylvia Plath and her best-known work, “The Bell Jar.”
“Sylvia, I knew what you meant when you talked about swimming in the ocean and leaving your patent leather black shoes pointed towards it while you swam. It tickled you to leave them there,” Del Rey says, continuing with a reference to Plath’s husband, poet Ted Hughes.
“It was the thought of a young child, or of a lost fairy. It reminded me of who I am. It’s why I’m now at this facility by the ocean and why I go barefoot, and why I go calmly. Why I leave my shoes up by the stairway. I do it for you and I do it for me. Because having learned from others and from you, I learned there was a missing piece to finding existential calmness and domestic bliss to lead to peace. So see, you can’t fall in love with a man like Ted or a musician who sings about being free.”