Lana Del Rey ‘Compelled’ By Britney Spears

Label boss Jimmy Iovine calls criticism 'a drag.'

To look at her, you’d think Lana Del Rey’s inspirations come mostly from 1940s detective movies and sepia-toned Hollywood pinups. But the “Video Games” singer told England’s Magic 105.4 that one of her big fashion and music icons is Britney Spears.

“I’m not really interested in a ton of female musicians but there is something about Britney that compelled me — the way she sings and just the way she looks,” Del Rey said. And even though she’s just released her major-label debut under the Del Rey name, she added that she’s already kind of over music-making.

“The thing that makes me happy now isn’t really singing,” she said. “Music was once the be-all and end-all, but when you lose everything you have over and over again, it’s not so important.”

It might be a bit early for her to bail on the whole music thing though, since her album, Born to Die, topped the iTunes album charts in 14 countries this week, including the U.S., U.K., Italy, France, Germany, Ireland and Mexico.

The chart triumph — and a possible #2 debut next week on the Billboard albums tally — came despite a rash of negative or middling reviews 
 of the album as well as the continuing fallout from her shaky “Saturday Night Live” 
 debut last month.

The haterade has gotten her label boss, Interscope’s Jimmy Iovine, to chime in on the flack his latest protégé has been taking. “It’s a drag,” Iovine told The Hollywood Reporter. “Maybe this is a new sport. It’s something we’ve never seen before. Or maybe it’s [like] the Giants and the Jets.” Del Rey herself told Rolling Stone that she thought she looked “beautiful” and sang “fine” on the show, saying that “that’s just the way I perform, and my fans know that.”

Say what you want about Del Rey’s looks, attitude and performance ability, but Iovine said there is one thing you can’t mess with.

Musically, he thinks Die is “really good. Great lyrics and great songs. I don’t care what anybody says, ‘Video Games’ is a great song. When she sings that song, it moves me. It’s how we signed her — she sang and it was beautiful. I think she’s really talented. Period.”

Often guilty, never convicted. Serving 15 years to life at MTV News.