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Ting Tings: Sounds From Nowheresville—Album Review

The music of UK indie-pop dance duo The Ting Tings is basic. Simple. Redundant. Uninventive. Predictable. Redundant. (Oh, wait, I said redundant already, didn’t I?)

Oh. And it’s also some of the catchiest stuff on the market.

The Ting Tings (a.k.a. Jules de Martino and Katie White) seem to have capitalized on the concept that sometimes less is more. They’ve basically combined jangly guitars, a solid dance beat, and Katie White’s sing-songy, cockney-laced half-rap, half-cheerleader chant vocals to make a sound that moves your feet, then sticks in your head long after the music stops. Their new release, Sounds from Nowheresville, simply builds on this trend and takes it to the next level.

By the time The Ting Tings’ debut album We Started Nothing hit the market back in 2008, they had already achieved international success with their catchy singles “That’s Not My Name” and “Great DJ.” The album has since sold over 4 million copies worldwide, and my guess is that Sounds from Nowheresville is likely to do the same.

Though I’ve been a fan of The Ting Tings since I first heard “Great DJ,” by the end of We Started Nothing, I have to admit I was a bit bored. This is why I called them “redundant.” Three and a half minutes of this stuff was fabulous; 30-40 minutes—not so much.

Thankfully, Sounds from Nowheresvlle takes things a little farther musically. It’s the same basic sound, but expanded to be a more diverse. The rhythms are more complex, more jazzy, perhaps with a little less electronica and a little more plain old groove. There’s a bit more variety in the songs themselves, more diversity of sound in the arrangements—and sometimes Katie White actually sings. So between the two records, I’m gonna step out here and say I like this one even better than the last.

The good thing about this record is that The Ting Tings have not actually forsaken their signature sound, the one that made them famous. They’ve simply expanded upon it, made it more interesting. Sounds from Nowheresville is a natural evolution for the band, and contrary to what the title suggests—this band is going somewhere, not nowhere.

ALBUM RATING: 3.5 stars (out of five)


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About the Author

on MUSIC IS MY OXYGEN WEEKLY.

Tim Ferrar's interest in pop and rock started as a child, listening to Top-40 radio for hours on end while playing air guitar in his bedroom. Eventually air guitar led to electric guitar, and Tim began playing in bands and writing his own songs. With an admitted weakness for "a great hook or a great guitar riff," Tim's musical tastes are broad and varied, ranging from Michael Jackson and Lady Gaga on the pop side to Bon Jovi and Foo Fighters on the rock side- making him the ideal guy to cover our Rock and Pop categories. By day, Tim is a mild-mannered accountant in Chicago. By night, he rocks out on electric guitar in a cover band in various clubs around town- much to the surprise of some of his clients.

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