Lana Del Rey commands a rare breed of devotion. Ready to fight for pop's crowning jewels, her fans resemble a battalion. Armed with a studied musical knowledge and a healthy following on Tumblr, they will argue until their vocal chords can speak no more about why Lizzy Grant is the greatest thing to happen to music, the depressing toils of unrequited love and probably also international space travel.
Despite this however, Lana Del Rey also stands atop a hill of contention. For example: you, a non-fan, may not understand why anyone would queue to watch Lana Del Rey perform live. And they, the hardcore contingent, will stand in line for hours to do exactly that. So when this happened on Monday morning, I went along to ask the important question: Lana Del Rey fans, why do you love her? And also: why are you standing in the pissing rain? What about trench foot, babes?
Between bouts of dismal drizzle, I pottered the clusters of LDR stans hugging the walls of the O2 Brixton Academy in south London, awaiting the curtains-up to her sold out and only UK date. Despite the cheerless weather the line of tired faces grew longer, hours before the doors would open and surrender themselves to a flock of obsessive fans, bleary anthems and intoxicated wailing. Woo!
Billy and Alfred
Noisey: Tell me. Lana Del Rey. Rain. Why?
Billy: I have loved her for so long and been waiting to see her for so many years. When she does tour, it's usually very little and select. She hasn't come to England since 2013, and I was a baby then, I couldn't see her. When this was announced like a week ago we were literally, like, shook.
Lana's said she's cast a spell or two to try and rid us of Trump. What would you get her to bewitch away?
Billy: Oooh, bad fashion.
Alfred: Everyone that doesn't love me.
Billy: Oh everyone that doesn't love you, that's a very "you" answer isn't it.
Luke and Leah
Noisey: How long have you been queuing for?
Luke: We've been here since 2 AM. Long time.
Wait. What the fuck?!
It's quite rare for her to do a show in London. The last time we saw her was three years ago, four years ago in London. Hammersmith Apollo, was the last show she actually did in London.
Lana Del Rey recently announced she has cast 'spells' to get rid of Donald Trump. If you could cast a spell to make something disappear what would it be?
Luke: Ooh, just anything negative.
Leah: There's a lot of negativity in the world at the moment, I think there's a lot of it in general at the moment. Every day there's something new and negative, there's a lot of it coming up in the news.
Anything more specific?
Luke: My head is just going straight back to Donald Trump!
Lucy and Theresa
Noisey: How long have you two been waiting here?
Theresa: Since about 8 AM.
Isn't there anything else you'd have rather done in this time?
Lucy: There's things I'd rather be doing with my time, but for me, Lana Del Rey is such a big part of my life that if I didn't get front row I'd be really annoyed with myself. It's worth it!
What is it about Lana that makes you put yourselves through the wind, rain and cold all day?
We both grew up with her since we were 12 or 13. She's seen us through the whole of our teenage years. I met my best friend through Lana. It's how I've made some of my closest friends.
Cav, Kizzie, Maddie, Evie and Chelsea
Noisey: This is cute! What would you say sums up your Lust for Life?
Cav: World peace.
Chelsea: No Donald Trump.
Lana Del Rey is known for severely suffering with stage fright, what's your worst fear?
Evie: Mine's probably stage fright too.
Chelsea: I don't like belly buttons.
See, it is a thing. They're disgusting, they're not meant to be there. And people who get belly button piercings, why?
Abbie, Abraham and Elza
Noisey: How long have you been waiting?
Elza: Not long, less than an hour I'd say.
What is it about Lana that you like?
Abraham: Her music, innit.
Would you put a hex on Trump or Theresa?