Lana Del Rey is back in the news with the release of her debut LP, Born to Die, and the singer tells Rolling Stone she's not a bit bothered by all the negative press she got for her recent Saturday Night Live appearance. (A video clip from the show is included in this file.) "I actually felt good about it," she says. "I thought I looked beautiful and sang fine." Lots of critics thought she was off-key and just plain awkward. "I know some people didn't like it, but that's just the way I perform, and my fans know that."
As for the new album, Rolling Stone critic Rob Sheffield isn't a fan. "Given her chic image, it's a surprise how dull, dreary and pop-starved" the album is, he writes. But at Slate, Jonah Weiner says the album gets better with every listen. He also recounts Del Rey's transformation from Lizzy Grant (her real name, under which she first performed). It hasn't been perfect, and that's part of what makes her interesting. "The fact that you can see Del Rey’s seams is, whether or not she intends it, fascinating, and may account in part for the discomfiting effect she has on listeners: She presents as a Frankenstein monster, a prototype sexbot on the fritz, a glitch in the pop matrix." Read the full column here.