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Essential Listening: 7 Songs to Get Familiar with PinkPantheress

Could 2022 be another triumphant year for TikTok musicians? If it is, the elusive PinkPantheress is continuing to lead the charge. The 20-year-old began posting her UK garage and 00’s pop-inspired tracks to TikTok after finding little success on SoundCloud, and soon garnered hundreds of thousands of likes on the platform. Not long after, she signed to major labels Parlophone and Elektra Records. 

PinkPantheress has since won the BBC’s Sound Of 2022, placed on Billboard’s 21 under 21 list in 2021, and had her track Obsessed With You nominated for BRIT’s Song Of The Year. Even Coldplay has covered her single, Just for me. 

With her debut mixtape, To Hell With It, already gaining critical acclaim, PinkPantheress’ future's looking bright. If you’re not familiar with PinkPantheress by now, get your Nura device on and feast your ears with these seven essential tracks. 

1. Attracted to you

Clocking in at a succinct one minute and eight seconds, this uplifting earworm will leave you aching for more as soon as it starts to fade out. Showcasing her love for 00s pop, PinkPantheress lays down her vocals and adlibs over the glossy guitars from Just Jack’s Starz In Their Eyes. The quick-fire track sees the singer romanticise a fling that ultimately wasn’t destined to last – much like the track itself, to our disappointment. 

2. Just for me

If you live in Britain or New Zealand, you probably heard this one on the radio throughout 2021. Produced by Mura Masa, Just For Me is heavily inspired by UK garage with it’s two-step beat and guitar line that’s reminiscent of Artful Dodger’s Movin Too Fast, reviving the genre for the roaring 20s. Topped with PinkPantheress’ gentle high-pitched vocals, It’s been celebrated by NME, The Fader, Pitchfork, Billboard and NPR as one of the best songs of the year. You’ll be hearing this one for years to come. 

3. Pain

Keeping in line with her adoration for UK garage, PinkPantheress puts her spin on the iconic Flowers by Sweet Female Attitude in Pain. She slows down the original track, lays a deep bassline underneath and sings a seriously catchy melody in the chorus sections. Then, towards the end of the track, the song slows right down and exudes lo-fi, vaporwave vibes. Pain was one of her earliest TikTok videos, gaining her significant traction on the platform and in the charts.  You’ll be singing “La, la-la-la-la, la-la” all day after this. 

4. Passion

PinkPantheress channels her inner junglist for Passion, blending dreamy synth pads, mellow finger-plucked guitar, and hazy, jazzy chords that cleverly juxtapose the high-tempo drum’n’bass beat. Her vocals float in, telling a tale of misunderstanding and loneliness. The track reached the charts and was met with praise from critics and fans. PinkPantheress posted Passion on TikTok in January 2021 with the message: “no cos for sum reason I’m rly bumpin this in my bathroom at 2am”. We doubt she’s been the only one to do so. 

5. Reason 

Reason sees PinkPantheress keep the fast-paced breakbeats coming, complemented again with honest lyrics and airy vocals. Why the love for drum‘n’bass? Speaking to BBC, PinkPantheress said: “What I noticed about drum and bass is that there wasn't much singing on top. There were sometimes vocal notes and vocal cuts but there definitely wasn't much singing.” By leaving her mark on her intricately-crafted beats, she’s carved a unique place in the alt-pop scene. And listeners love her for it.

6. Just a waste

This is one of the songs that started it all. You won’t find it on streaming services, likely because it belts out a slightly-slowed sample of Michael Jackson’s Off The Wall. But this was one of PinkPantheress’ first TikTok videos and still sits on her profile at over 800,000 views. It’s no wonder – her talent for breathing new life into stone cold classics shines bright in Just A Waste. The groovy, rebellious track will get you dancing in no time.

7. Break it off

The London-based artist ups the ante again in Break It Off, dropping a trippy, lo-fi breakbeat that would fit perfectly in an old-school video game. PinkPantheress sampled the 1997 drum’n’bass track Circles by Adam F for this track, and further displays her penchant for making music that's both fresh and nostalgic. Break It Off racked up over 700,000 in March 2021 and was subsequently released in June on Parlophone. Culture mag Nylon claimed that the track is “a great primer” for PinkPantheress’ vibe. We couldn’t agree more. 

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