While I’ve had some Pinkshinyultrablast in my library for a while, it hasn’t been in heavy enough rotation such that when I discovered and fell for fellow Saint Petersburg shoegazers Blankenberge, they stylistic parallels weren’t immediately obvious to me. But now that I hear it, I can’t really unhear it. And it figures – Pinkshinyultrablast was probably Russia’s premiere shoegaze act, so the idea of any of their countrymen not being influenced is unlikely. Plus unabashed tribute is in their DNA – they take their name from an album by American shoegazers Astrobrite.
Lyubov Soloveva’s airy, language-transcending vocals, in particular, are a clear blueprint for how Yana Guselnikova sings in Blankenberge. But whereas they seek out more gossamer, celestial textures, Pinkshinyultrablast crave the adrenaline rush and their music is more propulsive and at times manic, openly and increasingly embracing electronic textures across their three albums – think high-speed Stereolab. But their 2015 debut Everything Else Matters remains the best entry point, and in particular this single which is just a stratospheric sugar rush.
Pinkshinyultrablast’s last album was 2018’s Miserable Miracles but they released a 15-minute jam simply entitled “Songs” via Bandcamp in May 2020. Since then, they’ve been silent, perhaps related to expressing some strong opinions about Russia’s invasion of Ukraine before going dark (perhaps wisely) on social media. One hopes the hibernation is just temporary, and that circumstances will allow their return sooner rather than later.