12 of the best major label debut albums


Lana Del Rey – Born to Die

Lana Del Rey caused a big splash with her Interscope debut in 2012, but probably not in the way she and her team were hoping for, putting the old adage that “all publicity is good publicity” to the ultimate test. She faced questions about her privileged upbringing and past career as a model, her artistic authenticity was called into question with many believing her seemingly overnight rise was actually the result of a cynical corporate marketing campaign, and her lethargic performance of hit single “Video Games” on SNL was widely mocked.

Much of this is unfair, as taken in a vacuum, Born to Die is one of the decade’s best and most unique pop albums, like the soundtrack to an alternate universe James Bond movie that takes place in post-apocalyptic Los Angeles.

Lana Del Rey - Born to Die
Photo: Lana Del Rey