Wednesday, October 27, 2021

Album Reviews: Finneas and PinkPantheress

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Billie Eilish’s brother’s debut album may be called Optimist, but it’s actually a minor downer. While the TikTok sensation PinkPantheress has released a first album that shines with brilliance

What a strange situation Finneas O’Connor is in. Better known as Finneas, the brother and producer of Billie Eilish released a sadly mellow debut album that ironically bears the name Optimist: It is clear that he still has gasoline in the tank for his own work.

Most of the songs here are about some kind of disappointment or a pessimistic view of the future. Some are relatable, such as “A Concert 6 Months From Now”, where he wonders if it will create a new relationship, and some less, like in the Hollywood-sounding “Medieval” about the fleetingness of fame.

It is mainly written for piano, but too often sentimental and brooding. Occasionally it shines a little brighter, as in “The Kids Are All Dying”, which combines chord pounding in the style of “Bennie and the Jets” with hopefully tongue-in-cheek texts about the state of the world.

To be honest, it’s a bit of a downer.

Stream: Around my neck, happy now what they’re going to say about us

To hell with that is a stunning debut from the mysterious PinkPantheress, named after the TikTok account that made this British singer and producer famous a few months ago.

If you have teenagers at home, you might recognize Break It Off, which combines fast garage beats with Pantheress’ sweet voice, a catchy tune who has ruled the algorithms all summer.

There are also nine other unmistakable hits that skilfully interpolate the 90s hit “Flowers” ​​from Sweet Female Attitude on “Pain” and the house classic “Gypsy Woman” on “I Must Apologise”.

These portions of nostalgic sampling paired with shimmering hyperpop production form a perfect glittering base. Pantheress has an ear for hooks, and their top lines dance overhead – just like you, should you be lucky enough to hear one of these tracks in one evening. A record that shines with a brilliance that others who hope for TikTok can only dream of.

Stream: Pain, just for me, break it off

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