ABEL TESFAYE (THE WEEKND) INTERVIEWING LANA DEL REY FOR INTERVIEW MAGAZINE GERMANY
ABEL: Where do I reach you?
LANA: I’m sitting in a little, picturesque Square in Paris, whose name I can never remember (laughs).
ABEL: Have I told you how happy it makes me that we could finally work together?
LANA: The pleasure is all mine. I love our song for your new album.
ABEL: The song was very important to me because I think you’re one of the best artists of our time. I admire that you never hide yourself and that your vision is so strong.
LANA: Oh thanks. That’s a really great compliment, especially when it comes from someone like you.
ABEL: Is it hard for you to always keep track of your vision?
LANA: Not really, no. I just do the things that feel right. That’s how I decide who I work with, for whom I work and what material I release. Before every project I think about how my aesthetic could fit to it and hold on to it.
ABEL: But one can still see your progress.
LANA: My taste is changing too. Nevertheless, I know exactly what I like, how it should sound and look.
ABEL: Is that the reason why you’re rarely working together with other artists?
LANA: I’m just very shy, which is why it’s difficult for me to approach people. With you it’s different: I love your voice and your talent to find a sudden melodic turn for each of your songs.
ABEL: You have always been working with different producers.
LANA: Yes, but that in a limited way. When I met my Producer Rick four years ago, I knew in that moment that we would be working together for a very long time. It just feels right. For my next album though I plan to open a up a little and work together with more people.
ABEL: You grew up in New York and still you seem to be magically attracted by the West Coast. Your music is like a reminiscing declaration of love to California. Where does this love for the other coast come from?
LANA: I have very much fallen in love with California’s landscape. There’s not much comparable nature in the world: The little villages and towns, which cuddle in between the coast and the mountains are unique. And so romantic. Adding to that I just admire Hollywood. When I left New York, I lived in London for four years. Then after that Los Angeles was the only destination to be in line.
ABEL: Do you like the people there?
LANA: I love the people in California!
LANA: Because they are politically informed on the one hand and keep track of their health and on the other hand they appreciate their wild, untamed side. I think this contrast is cool: responsible and wild at the same time, yeah!
ABEL: I really enjoyed meeting your family. Your father is so cool. He’s a really special person!
ABEL: And your sister Chuck… How was it like growing up with her? Have you ever thought that you would work that closely together one day?
LANA: Not at all. We didn’t have the slightest idea. I would have never imagined that I’d be a singer and she didn’t think she’d be a photographer. But I remember very well how impressed I was by her first photographs. I was 17 at that time and just started college, she 15. In her first pictures you could already see this huge talent of hers. The pictures were perfectly exposed and absolutely symmetrical. Portraits of women are her specialty. She has her own imagery, I love that.
ABEL: You’re music is also very cinematic: I always think of films like Polanski’s Chinatown when I put on your records.
LANA: That’s a nice compliment. I love all the big L.A. films like Chinatown or also Sunset Boulevard.
ABEL: Would it appeal to you to ever direct something yourself?
LANA: I would in every case always mix reality with surrealism and I would use different cameras for different scenes to create a special mood, I’m really into that. In dream sequences for instance I like to work with a phantom camera and if it’s supposed to look vintage I prefer old VHS cameras.
ABEL: Could you imagine doing a video or short film for me?
LANA: I’d love to!
ABEL: Your new album is called Honeymoon. Why this title?
LANA: I just like beautiful, melodious words. And I love the word Honeymoon- and all it symbolizes. The idea of a romantic Rendezvous that stands for endless love is enchanting to me.
ABEL: In what kind of mood did you find yourself when you found the title?
LANA: Pretty much the opposite of Honeymoon. Last year there was a lot of chaos within myself. I like contrasts and contradictions though. Things I want but don’t get, positive and negative, inside and outside, I often use such combinations for my texts or titles.
ABEL: Summertime Sadness.
LANA: Exactly (laughs).
ABEL: How would you say does Honeymoon sound?
LANA: When I started working on the new album three months after Ultraviolence, it first sounded like a Jazz album. Then, in winter, after three quarters of the record were done, we played with muddy trap beats, and tried how they would fit the tracks.
LANA: That’s why the album somehow feels retro futuristic now.
ABEL: Would you say that this album like the one before sounds similarly like L.A.?
LANA: In a way it does. It started right after I moved to California: All of a sudden the West Coast urged itself into my creative process. Here is just the best place to live. And if you just look at who is moving here you realize: Others recognize this power of attraction that comes from California, too. Even the last complainers in New York that have always been picking at L.A. eventually pack their bag and switch coasts.
ABEL: Will you be here when the album comes out or on the road?
LANA: In London, because there I’m still deeply rooted in a way. And at the beginning of next year I’m going to go on tour. In the meantime I’ll be spending as much time as possible in L.A.; I couldn’t do it any other way.