PinkPantheress ushers in a new wave of bubblegum nostalgia with to hell with it


to hell with it

Parlophone · October 15, 2021

PinkPantheress’ to hell with it submerges the listener into the intimate and dark nostalgic world of her dorm room. While almost nothing is known about PinkPantheress and very few photos of her exist, she is able to create a sense of deep connection through her music, almost whispering into the listener’s ear over hypnotic UK garage beats. The 20-year-old college student wrote and produced the entire album herself, mixing the UK garage house scene with indie bedroom pop and Y2K influences. The viral hit “Pain” samples the famous UK garage track “Flowers” by Sweet Female Attitude, but is slowed by PinkPantheress to match her dreamlike state. This turns the dance track to a hypnotizing lo-fi beat. Nearly four singles off of the mixtape have gone viral on TikTok, their catchy upbeat drums and euphoric synth undertones stuck in the heads of millions of listeners. The album itself is more of a mixtape, with only five of the songs on it being new and the rest a compilation of her previously released singles. While her songs sound catchy and upbeat with simple breakbeats, her soft and hyperreal vocals reveal her realities of heartbreak, obsession, depression, and post-party emptiness contradicting her bubblegum dance sounds. Seemingly sad over her ex-boyfriend and grappling with loneliness and self discovery at the age of 19, PinkPantheress almost ironically reminds herself of the reasons she is alive with the haunting lyrics, “I’ve wrote this letter to remind myself the reasons I’m alive, I got to reason number five.” This further describes how she feels broken inside and yearns for the past. The personal and brutally honest lyrics she fearlessly delivers mimic the online intimacy formed by a generation raised with Tumblr and TikTok, connecting to her underlying Y2K themes that are crystal clear on her saturated album cover. 

With none of the songs surpassing two minutes and thirty-three seconds, the album is almost intentionally sculpted for the fast-paced digital era of TikTok songs. PinkPantheress is able to create for the TikTok era in a purely genuine way, succeeding because her experiences are real and nothing is forced for short-term fame, or viral videos. She allows the simple and mesmerizing beats to ride out in the spaces between her airy verses, never forcing a note and only expressing what comes naturally, and is real to her. 

The new standout track “All my friends know” infuses reggaeton influence yet reflects on the nostalgia and heartbreak of a previous relationship, while simultaneously beginning and ending with a dreamy and euphoric piano melody that perfectly frames the track. In this way, to hell with it quite literally says “to hell with it” towards any fears of being “cringe,” as PinkPantheress says. It perfectly reflects feelings of not caring what others think and having nothing left to lose, as she proclaims “I wasn’t meant to be this bored at nineteen.” She fearlessly fuses upbeat genres with contradictory nostalgic and brutally honest lyrics that pave the way for her to be a leading artist of the new online generation. PinkPantheress’ to hell with it brings private sentimentality to two-minute viral hits in an effortless and strikingly genuine fashion, deeply connecting an online generation and solidifying the start of her career.

Listen Live