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04 August 2010

Album Review: Pinkshinyultrablast. Happy Songs for Happy Zombies EP.

Artist: Pinkshinyultrablast.
Album: Happy Songs for Happy Zombies EP.
Label: Odd Box Records.
Release Date: June 2009.

Wow! That's about all I could say the first time I listened to this stunning new EP by Russia's Pinkshinyultrablast. Entitled Happy Songs for Happy Zombies, that about sums up the way I felt afterwards! Enslaved, intoxicated and ears ringingly blissful, I am now a true believer.

The band is named after, in my humble opinion, the greatest Astrobrite (Scott Cortez) album, Pinkshinyultrablast, and they do justice to the name! PSUB are based out of Saint Petersburg, Russia and bring to the table a very mature shoegaze sound. As well as taking cues from all the greats (i.e. MBV, JAMC and Astrobrite, to name but a few) they have a contemporary sound much like APTBS or Ceremony. They aren't only standing on tradition like a lot of modern shoegaze, but they are also pushing the genre forward. Thank the gods for new blood like this!

PSUB pummel you into submission with the opening track, "Blaster", and the intensity doesn't let up for the entire EP. While layered in a film of dirty noise, there is watery melody beneath, swimming in the lower current and pulling at you like an undertow. This is where they get their hooks in you, and they don't let go. Track two, "Deerland", is a juggernaut of fierce riffing, with Metal Machine Music underpinnings. The vocals are drenched in pink noise and the deepest canyons of reverb. Welcome to the bottomless pit!! Track three, "Honeybee", is a bit more delicate in the beginning. It's kind of like early Slowdive or Springhouse in its melodic sense. It has a jangly, 80's feel about it, but suddenly it twists on you and becomes the noise of your Hypnagogic pop dreams. It's a maelstrom of jagged, beautiful sound!

The closing track, "Ode to Godzilla", is my least favorite on the album. I am in no way saying I dislike it, I just don't like it as much as the others. Nevertheless, it rocks intensely and is covered in layers of gorgeous sound. It has an interesting collection of guitar effects (what I'm presuming are guitar effects) applied throughout , which are mind blowing in themselves. I just don't think it holds up melodically as well as the others on the EP. It has an almost APTBS vibe to it, but not as heavy as that much-loved band.

All together I give this little EP 4 out of 5 stars. Only 4 because the last song is not quite as mind blowing as the others, but it is still a great starter EP. I can only hope the full length will maintain this level of craftsmanship.

Review by Danny.