We've already chronicled Lana Del Rey and The Weeknd's underappreciated union in music, but her recorded relationship with A$AP Rocky has been running strong for over five years now, too. And as the singer has taken to Instagram twice recently to tease the Brooklyn duo's newest collaborations from her forthcoming album Lust for Life, we revisit their longstanding genre-blending.
It turns out we have Alex Fitts of production team The Kickdrums (with Matt Penttila) to thank for Lana and A$AP's unexpected partnering. According to MTV, back in April 2012, it was his idea to join their forces on "Ridin,'" a track intended to be the lead single from the Kickdrums' free Follow the Leaders mixtape. But an hour before its release—despite both the producers and A$AP agreeing to feature the song on both their albums—Rocky's "label stepped in" and the song was scrubbed from their tracklist. Two months later in June, much to Rocky's chagrin and the Kickdrum's surprise, the song suddenly hit the internet, now coupled with imagery from Lana and A$AP's "National Anthem" video released just a day before (more on that below). A$AP accused the producers of being behind the leak and, despite their denial, the song didn't end up appearing on Rocky's debut album Long.Live.A$AP when it dropped the following year.
"National Anthem" (VIDEO)
Just a day before "Ridin'" hit the web, fans were treated to Lana's "National Anthem" video. And though the track—pulled from her debut album Born to Die—didn't originally include A$AP as a featured guest when it dropped earlier that year in January, its music video largely did. Playing the John F. Kennedy to both Lana's Jackie O. and Marilyn Monroe, the hip-hop-meets-Hollywood clip was cinematic eye candy made for the Instagram ages at nearly 8 minutes long and boasting 8mm influence. Lana would eventually describe it as "the most beautiful thing I've ever done."
Last month (June 2), Lana took to Instagram to share a clip of herself driving while listening to a snippet of what she teased as a new collaboration with A$AP and Playboi Carti. Produced by Boi-1da, A$AP can be heard softly spitting ("She just might become my lover for real / I might f—k with her all summer for real / Then I hop up in your covers for real") while Lana airily croons under him: "Wrap you up in my daisy shades."
Considering that her caption—"We made a lot of good ones but I think we picked the best ones for the record"—referred to songs in the plural, it wasn't long before she confirmed as much in a second Instagram post, published yesterday (July 9).
Writing "2 new tracks w ASAP ROCKY," the singer could now be seen singing a continuation of the same record: "Hip-hop in the summer / Don't be a bummer, babe / Be my undercover lover, babe / High-tops in the summer / Don't be a bummer, babe / Be my undercover lover, babe."
No word yet on what the second track sounds like, but they'll both debut in full on Apple's Beats 1 and BBC's Radio 1 on July 12. Lust for Life drops July 21.