Lana Del Rey unveiled the cover and tracklist for her upcoming album, Chemtrails Over The Country Club, on Sunday — and she’s already on the defensive about the visual.
“There’s always turmoil and upheaval and in the midst of it- there’s always beautiful music too,” Del Rey captioned the post of her album artwork. “Introducing my new album chemtrails over the country club”
In a since-deleted comment, Del Rey also offered her thoughts about the women of color shown in the album art and defended her “extremely inclusive” approach to diversity, while referencing past blowback over her comments about other female artists.
“I also want to say that with everything going on this year! And no this was not intended-these are my best friends, since you are asking today. And damn! As it happens when it comes to my amazing friends and this cover yes there are people of color on this records picture and that’s all I’ll say about that but thank you,” she wrote.
“My beautiful friend Valerie from Del Rio Mexico, my dearest friend Alex and my gorgeous friend Dakota Rain as well as my sweetheart Tatiana. these are my friends this is my life. We are all a beautiful mix of everything- some more than others which is visible and celebrated in everything I do,” she wrote, referencing the women who appear on the album cover.
“In 11 years working I have always been extremely inclusive without even trying to. My best friends are rappers my boyfriends have been rappers,” the singer added. “My dearest friends have been from all over the place, so before you make comments again about a WOC/POC issue, I’m not the one storming the capital, I’m literally changing the world by putting my life and thoughts and love out there on the table 24 seven. Respect it.”
Many commenters took issue with Del Rey’s overall statement, especially that the musician seemingly associated rappers with people of color.
“comes off angry also, she equated rappers to black people which was ……racist,” one user tweetedin response. “actual piece of nothing statement, what was it for, it was an ‘i’m not racist statement’ that nobody asked for”
Another expressed disappointment that the singer “really used the failed coup to promote her album…..”
The songstress is certainly no stranger to courting controversy — in 2020, she issued two apologies in disputes involving fellow female artists like Kehlani.
Back in May, Del Rey named the R&B singer and other artists in a controversial statement in which she attacked critics who said her music is “glamorizing abuse” while Cardi B, Nicki Minaj, and others notch hits “about being sexy, wearing no clothes, f—ing, cheating, etc.” After commenters criticized her for calling out mostly women of color, Del Rey remained unapologetic, saying the artists were her “favorite f—ing people.” In a follow-up post, she told fans that “making it about race says so much more about you than it does about me.”
Then in June, she was called out by Kehlani, Tinashe, and others for sharing videos depicting looting that revealed demonstrators’ faces at protests against police brutality. Her posts, which Kehlani said “[endangered] the lives of Black people” by disclosing identities, were later deleted.
Chemtrails Over The Country Club was originally slated for a September release but was postponed. There is currently no release date set. In October, Del Rey dropped one of its tracks, “Let Me Love You Like a Woman,” as a teaser.
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