Ultraviolence (song)

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to navigation Jump to search
Single by Lana Del Rey
from the album Ultraviolence
ReleasedJune 4, 2014 (2014-06-04)
FormatDigital download
Recordedlate 2013
  • Lana Del Rey
  • Daniel Heath
Producer(s)Dan Auerbach
Lana Del Rey singles chronology
"Shades of Cool"
"Brooklyn Baby"
Music video
"Ultraviolence" on YouTube

"Ultraviolence" is a song recorded by American singer and songwriter Lana Del Rey for her third studio album, Ultraviolence (2014). It was co-written by Del Rey, and Daniel Heath, and produced by Dan Auerbach. The song was released on June 4, 2014, by Polydor and Interscope Records, as the third single from Ultraviolence. A music video, directed by Francesco Carrozzini, was released on July 30, 2014.


According to Brenna Ehrlich of MTV News, "Ultraviolence" tells the story of a "typical Lana Del Rey romantic relationship: broken, failed and painful." The song contains a reference of The Crystals’ 1962 single "He Hit Me (It Felt Like a Kiss)" in its chorus.[2] Kevin Rutherford of Radio.com remarked that "Ultraviolence" maintained the theme of songs previously released from the album, it "ups the lilting, low-tempo, strings-heavy form" Del Rey had established in her earlier work.[3] Sal Cinquemani of Slant Magazine described "Ultraviolence" as a "laconic, string-laden torch song".[4] In the line "I can hear sirens sirens, he hit me and it felt like a kiss," Del Rey references the 1962 The Crystals song "He Hit Me (and It Felt like a Kiss)", and, according to Harriet Gibson of The Guardian, "appear[s] to romanticise brutality".[5] A writer for the Music Times commented that the "violins, lightly thumping drums and Del Rey's angelic singing" gave the song a "church-y" feel, pointing out that the track presented her "title sound".[6]

Critical response[edit]

She exalts a violent man on the title track, referencing The Crystals’ ‘He Hit Me (And It Felt Like A Kiss)’. It's harder still to listen knowing that Del Rey claims these situations are all true-to-life. 85% of domestic violence victims return to their abusers, submission is an ancient peccadillo, and there's no accounting for taste. But she conjures them with surface-level sadness worn like a shade of eyeshadow, which swiftly wears thin if you have no time for one-dimensional cads.

NME on Ultraviolence[7]

Nolan Feeney of Time criticized the song for its glorification of domestic violence, mentioning Lorde's comment on Del Rey's music, "This sort of shirt-tugging, desperate, don’t leave me stuff. That’s not a good thing for young girls, even young people, to hear." However, Feeney also stated that Del Rey would "likely" not endorse the "screwed-up tales of vice and luxury" her character, Lana Del Rey, sings about.[8] While noting that Del Rey did not offer a positive or negative opinion on domestic violence, Harley Brown of Spin said that the lyrics to the song could generate controversy, especially since Del Rey dismissed feminism in a recent interview with The Fader, saying "For me, the issue of feminism is just not an interesting concept. I’m more interested in, you know, SpaceX and Tesla, what’s going to happen with our intergalactic possibilities. Whenever people bring up feminism, I’m like, god. I’m just not really that interested."[9][10] By the end of 2014, NME named "Ultraviolence" the 32nd best song of the year.[11]

Music video[edit]

A music video, shot entirely on an iPhone on the 8mm Vintage Camera app, was released on July 30, 2014 by Noisey (Vice). It was directed by Francesco Carrozzini, and shows Del Rey wearing a white wedding dress with a veil and a bouquet of flowers in her hands, wandering around an outside setting and later entering a church. The video is set at Portofino, in Italy, and the church where Del Rey enters at the end is San Sebastiano Church.[12][13]

Track listing[edit]

  • Digital download[14]
  1. "Ultraviolence" – 4:41
  • Digital download (Hook N Sling Remix)[15]
  1. "Ultraviolence" (Hook N Sling Remix) — 5:29


Credits adapted from the liner notes of Ultraviolence.[16]

Performance credits
Technical and production


Chart (2014) Peak
Belgium (Ultratip Flanders)[17] 34
Belgium (Ultratip Wallonia)[18] 12
Canada (Canadian Hot 100)[19] 38
Czech Republic (Singles Digitál Top 100)[20] 59
France (SNEP)[21] 88
US Billboard Hot 100[22] 70

Live performances[edit]

Del Rey premiered "Ultraviolence" as part of her set at the PNE Forum in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada on May 25, 2014.[23]

Release history[edit]

Country Date Format Label
Australia[24] June 4, 2014 Digital download Interscope
United States[14]
United Kingdom[30] August 18, 2014 Polydor
Italy[31] October 3, 2014 Contemporary hit radio


  1. ^ Copper, Duncan (June 4, 2014). "Lana Del Rey Is Anyone She Wants to Be". The Fader (cover story). June/July 2014 (92). Retrieved February 12, 2015. We could go back to the start, she sings on the title track, but I don’t know where we are. Certainly the rock ballad suits her retro preoccupation;
  2. ^ Lana Del Rey's 'Ultraviolence' Will Give You Goosebumps - MTV
  3. ^ Rutherford, Kevin (June 4, 2014). "Listen to Lana Del Rey's Solemn, Strings-Heavy New Song 'Ultraviolence'". Radio.com. Retrieved June 5, 2014.
  4. ^ Cinquemani, Sal (June 4, 2014). "Track Review: Lana Del Rey, "Ultraviolence"". Slant Magazine. Retrieved June 5, 2014.
  5. ^ Gibsone, Harriet (June 5, 2014). "Listen to Lana Del Rey's Ultraviolence". The Guardian. Retrieved June 5, 2014.
  6. ^ "REVIEW: Lana Del Rey Drops 'Ultraviolence' Title Track". Music Times. Retrieved June 4, 2014.
  7. ^ Snapes, Laura (June 16, 2014). "NME Reviews – Lana Del Rey – 'Ultraviolence'". NME. Retrieved February 10, 2015.
  8. ^ Feeney, Nolan (June 4, 2014). "Does Lana Del Rey's New Song Glorify Domestic Violence?". Time. Retrieved June 5, 2014.
  9. ^ Brown, Harley. "Listen to Lana Del Rey's Sweeping, Cinematic 'Ultraviolence'". Spin. Retrieved June 5, 2014.
  10. ^ Cooper, Duncan (June 4, 2014). "Cover Story: Lana Del Rey Is Anyone She Wants to Be". The Fader. Retrieved June 5, 2014.
  11. ^ "NME's Top 50 Tracks Of 2014". NME. Retrieved December 20, 2014.
  12. ^ "Watch Lana Del Rey's New Official Music Video, "Ultraviolence"". Vice. July 30, 2014. Retrieved July 30, 2014.
  13. ^ Grow, Kory (July 30, 2014). "Lana Del Rey Plays a Bride Without a Groom in 'Ultraviolence' Video". Rolling Stone. Retrieved July 30, 2014.
  14. ^ a b "Ultraviolence – Lana Del Rey (Interscope/Universal)". AllMusic. Retrieved February 8, 2015.
  15. ^ "iTunes – Music – Ultraviolence (Hook n Sling Remix)". iTunes Store (US). Archived from the original on March 1, 2015.
  16. ^ Ultraviolence (booklet). Lana Del Rey. London, United Kingdom; Santa Monica, California: Polydor Records, Interscope Records. 2014.CS1 maint: others (link)
  17. ^ "Ultratop.be – Lana Del Rey – Ultraviolence" (in Dutch). Ultratip. Retrieved September 24, 2014.
  18. ^ "Ultratop.be – Lana Del Rey – Ultraviolence" (in French). Ultratip. Retrieved September 24, 2014.
  19. ^ "Lana Del Rey Chart History (Canadian Hot 100)". Billboard. Retrieved June 12, 2014.
  20. ^ "ČNS IFPI" (in Czech). Hitparáda – Digital Top 100 Oficiální. IFPI Czech Republic. Note: Change the chart to CZ – SINGLES DIGITAL – TOP 100 and insert 201425 into search. Retrieved July 3, 2014.
  21. ^ "Lescharts.com – Lana Del Rey – Ultraviolence" (in French). Les classement single. Retrieved June 16, 2014.
  22. ^ "Lana Del Rey Chart History (Hot 100)". Billboard. Retrieved June 12, 2014.
  23. ^ Frydenlund, Zach (May 27, 2014). "Watch Lana Del Rey Debut "Ultraviolence" at Her Show in Vancouver". Complex. Retrieved June 4, 2014.
  24. ^ "Ultraviolence – Single". Australia: iTunes Store. Apple Inc. Archived from the original on December 7, 2014.
  25. ^ "Ultraviolence – Single". Belgium: iTunes Store. Apple Inc. Retrieved December 16, 2014.
  26. ^ "Ultraviolence – Single". Finland: iTunes Store. Apple Inc. Retrieved December 9, 2014.
  27. ^ "Ultraviolence – Single". France: iTunes Store. Apple Inc. Retrieved December 9, 2014.
  28. ^ "Ultraviolence – Single". Luxembourg: iTunes Store. Apple Inc. Retrieved December 9, 2014.
  29. ^ "Ultraviolence (2014)" (in Dutch). 7digital Netherlands. Archived from the original on December 17, 2014.
  30. ^ Lane, Daniel (August 18, 2014). "This Week New Releases 18-08-2014". Official Charts Company. Retrieved December 16, 2014.
  31. ^ Aldi, Giorgia. "Lana Del Rey – Ultraviolence (Polydor)". Radio Airplay SRL. Archived from the original on December 23, 2014. Retrieved December 16, 2014.

External links[edit]