Our top 10 songs from The Ting Tings present the music of an English duo known for its dance-oriented indie pop sound. Originating from Salford, England, the duo was formed by singers/multi-instrumentalists Katie White and Jules De Martino in 2007. Before the formation of The Ting Tings, Katie and Jules were members of Dear Eskiimo, a musical trio that only issued the EP Be Patient before disbanding.
Without hesitation, The Ting Tings went ahead to issue their debut single “That’s Not My Name” in 2007 under the label Switchflicker Records. However, the duo’s stint under Switchflicker Records was short-lived owing to disputes with the label. Nevertheless, Columbia Records was swift to sign The Ting Tings assuring the duo of “sufficient artistic control” over its music.
The Ting Tings’ music career flourished during the duo’s stint with Columbia Records. Other artists whose career was a success under the label include AC/DC, Bob Dylan, The Byrds, Leonard Cohen, and Blood, Sweat & Tears. Over the years, The Ting Tings has issued a total of four studio albums with its first two records being the most critically acclaimed.
A Brief Review of Albums Issued by The Ting Tings
In 2008, The Ting Tings went ahead to issue their debut studio album We Started Nothing through Columbia Records. The album was produced by the duo’s member Jules De Martino and mixed by Dave Sardy. Sardy has also worked with a number of artists including System of a Down, Slayer, The Dandy Warhols, Marilyn Manson, and Johnny Cash. The ten-track album remains The Ting Tings’ most successful album to date.
We Started Nothing rose atop the Albums Chart in the UK. The album also climbed into the fifth spot on the European Albums Chart. We Started Nothing was warmly received in the United States where it rose to the seventy-eighth spot on the Billboard 200. “That’s Not My Name,” “Be the One,” “Great DJ,” and “Shut Up and Let Me Go” are the best songs from The Ting Tings’ two-time BPI platinum-certified album We Started Nothing.
The duo returned in 2012 with their second studio album Sounds from the Nowheresville. Sounds from the Nowheresville marked the duo’s final album issued through Columbia Records. Once again Jules De Martino handled the production of this album. Sounds from the Nowheresville was critically acclaimed despite not matching the success of The Ting Tings’ debut album.
The album marked The Ting Tings’ final album to rise into the Billboard 200 Chart where it peaked at position eighty-seven. Sounds of Nowheresville graced the Albums Chart in the UK peaking at position twenty-three. The album also marked The Ting Tings’ final album to enter the ARIA Album Chart having peaked at position fifty-one. “Heaven,” “Anyone Else,” “Winter,” and “What’s Wrong” are some of the most popular songs by The Ting Tings from the Sounds of Nowheresville. The deluxe version of Sounds of Nowheresville is home to the hit “Hands,” one of the most sought-after hits by The Ting Tings.
In 2014, The Ting Tings returned with their third studio album Super Critical. The album was issued through Finca Records—Jules De Martino co-produced the album alongside former Duran Duran member Andy Taylor. Andy Taylor has also worked with multiple artists/bands including Paul Rodgers of Bad Company, Belinda Carlisle, Robert Palmer, The Almighty, and Rod Stewart.
Super Critical was fairly successful making it to the UK Albums Chart where it peaked at number one hundred and eleven. The album earned a spot in the UK Independent Albums Chart where it reached position twenty-one. Unfortunately, the album never made it to the Billboard 200 Chart. “Wrong Club,” “Do It Again,” “Super Critical,” and “Only Love” are the best songs from The Ting Tings featured on Super Critical.
In 2018, The Ting Tings issued their fourth and most recent album The Black Light. The album barely earned critical acclaim failing to grace any major mainstream charts. Nevertheless, The Black Light is home to fan-favorite musical gems such as “Earthquake,” “Blacklight,” and “Estranged.”
The Ting Tings’ Accolades and Legacy
After the release of its debut studio album, The Ting Tings went ahead to earn numerous nominations for its outstanding musicianship. The duo earned a nomination for the Best New Artist Accolade at the 2010 Grammy Awards losing to Zac Brown Band. Other artists who had been nominated for the same accolade include Keri Hilson, MGMT, and Silversun Pickups. The duo has also earned nominations in other multiple award ceremonies including the Ivor Novello Awards, UK Festivals Awards, and MTV Video Music Awards. Below is our list of the all-time top 10 The Ting Tings from The Ting Tings.
Welcoming us to the top 10 songs from The Ting Tings is the incredible hit “Blacklight.” The song was issued in 2018 as the first single of the duo’s fourth studio album The Black Light. “Blacklight” finds the duo incorporating some electronic into its signature indie-pop sound influences. Katie’s vocals on this track are quite dynamic complementing the nostalgic lyrical themes articulated in the whole album. In one of her interviews, The Ting Tings vocalist Katie revealed that “Blacklight” is about an ultraviolet black light that exposes the flaws of oneself and/or someone else.
#9- Do It Again
“Do It Again” is one of the most revered songs from the band’s third studio album Super Critical. Jules De Martino went ahead to reveal that “Do It All Again” has its lyrics alluding to the need to do something wrong again. Singer Katie went ahead to brand “Do It Again” an anthem to end the “paralysis of criticism.”
Katie continued to say that the song is about pursuing whatever makes one happy. “Do It Again” graced the Ultratip Chart peaking at number thirty-eight. The song features a music video directed by the VES Award-winning director Andrew Daffy.
Solidly taking up the eighth spot on our top 10 songs from The Ting Tings is the astounding hit “Estranged.” The song was issued in 2018 as the second single of the duo’s fourth studio album The Black Light—the song also serves as the album opening track to the album. One of the distinguishing elements of the song “Estranged” from most of the songs on The Black Light is its haunting melody.
The combination of atmospheric synth tunes with imposing electronic beats in this track is quite prodigious. Katie’s raw vocals in this pick showcase her vulnerable side while still resonating with the song’s introspective nature. The singer also mention that the song was inspired by confusion about being “Estranged” from a person without indulging in an argument.
#7- Wrong Club
“Wrong Club” is yet another proof of the band’s ability to churn out infectious indie-pop tunes. The song was issued as the first single off the band’s third studio album Super Critical. “Wrong Club” was in an interview cited by Katie to be about the feeling like one doesn’t fit in a given social space.
The song was fairly successful in the US mainstream peaking at the twenty-eighth spot on the Billboard Adult Top 40 Chart. “Wrong Club” also graced the Billboard Dance Club Songs Chart rising to position two. The song featured a music video worked on by director Lisa Paclet. Lisa has also directed music videos for other artists including George Maple, Principles of Geometry, Boston Bun, and The Aikiu.
#6- Be the One
Ranking sixth on our top 10 songs from The Ting Tings is the brilliant hit “Be the One.” The song is one of the brightest picks off the duo’s debut studio album We Started Nothing. Vocalist Katie went ahead to cite “Be the One” as her best song featured on the album, We Started Nothing. The singer also went ahead to cite “Be the One” as the closest The Ting Tings have got to sounding like a Manchester band such as The Smiths.
However, this standout track had its musical style compared to that of the band Blondie as cited by critics. “Be the One” was a mainstream success rising to a peak position of number twenty-eight. The song’s music video was directed by the UK Music Video Awards winner Keith Schofield. Other artists who have worked with Keith Schofield include Ladyhawke, David Guetta, Supergrass, and Lenny Kravitz.
#5- Hang It Up
Sounds from Nowheresville, the band’s sophomore studio album is home to the fifth pick on our top 10 songs from The Ting Tings, “Hang It Up.” The song was issued as the lead single to the album. “Hang It Up” features drum samples from the 1980 hit “The Big Beat” by American rock musician Billy Squier.
The song was barely successful in the UK having missed entry into the Singles Top 100 by twenty-four spots. However, the song was warmly received by The Ting Tings’ fans in Asian countries such as Japan and South Korea. “Hanging It Up” had its music video worked on by director Dan Gable.
#4- Great DJ
“Great DJ” is among the earliest successful tracks by the duo. The song was issued as a single towards the release of the duo’s debut studio album We Started Nothing. “Great DJ” was The Ting Tings’ first major release after signing a recording deal with Columbia Records. Katie revealed in an interview that the song “Great DJ” has its lyrics alluding to alleviating boredom having it inspired by clubbing at a venue in Manchester.
“Great DJ” rose to the third spot on the UK Dance Club Songs Chart. The song also graced the UK Singles Chart, peaking at position thirty-three. “Great DJ” was a commercial success in Japan where it was gold-certified.
Ranking third on our top 10 songs from The Ting Tings is the dance-oriented synth-pop hit “Hands.” The song is featured on the deluxe version of the duo’s sophomore studio album Sounds from Nowheresville. “Hands” was premiered on the BBC Radio 1 show in 2010. The song was produced by Scottish DJ/singer Calvin Harris.
Thanks to the dance-oriented sound influences of this hit “Hands” topped the Billboard Dance Club Songs Chart. The song also climbed the UK Singles Chart where it managed to rise to a peak position of number twenty-nine. “Hands” had its music video directed by Warren Fu, who is best known for his work with Mark Ronson, Daft Punk, The Killers, Weezer, and Shakira.
#2- Shut Up and Let Me Go
“Shut Up and Let Me Go” is one of the most successful songs from the band’s debut studio album We Started Nothing. The song is a fiery heartbreak pop ballad—De Martino mentioned to have been inspired by being dropped by Mercury Records after a short stint playing as Dear Eskiimo. The song was The Ting Tings’ final track to rise into the Billboard Hot 100 Chart peaking at the fifty-fifth spot.
“Shut up and Let Me Go” also graced the UK Singles Chart rising to a peak position of number six. The song was a commercial success in the UK and the US where it earned silver certification and platinum certification respectively. “Shut Up and Let Me Go” went ahead to win the Best UK Video accolade at the 2008 MTV Video Music Awards. However, the song lost the Video of the Year accolade to “Piece of Me” by Britney Spears in the same award ceremony.
#1- That’s Not My Name
Number one on our top 10 songs from The Ting Tings is the alluring hit “That’s Not My Name.” The song was the first single issued by the duo—it would later be featured on The Ting Tings’ debut studio album We Started Nothing. “That’s Not My Name” is The Ting Tings’ most successful song having earned platinum certification in Australia, the United Kingdom, and the United States.
The song went ahead to top the Scottish and UK Singles Chart. “That’s Not My Name” would later climb to the thirty-ninth spot on the Billboard Hot 100. The song was nominated for the Best Contemporary Song accolade in the 2009 Ivor Novello Awards ceremony. However, the song lost to the track “Grounds for Divorce” by Elbow.
Feature Photo: Matthew Gibbons at en.wikipedia, CC BY-SA 3.0 <https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0>, via Wikimedia Commons
Top 10 Ting Tings Songs article published on Classic RockHistory.com© 2023
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