Release Date: Oct 27, 2014
Record label: Finca Records
Genre(s): Pop/Rock, Alternative/Indie Rock, Indie Rock, Indie Electronic, New Wave/Post-Punk Revival, Alternative Dance
British duo Ting Tings stepped into the shadows somewhat after the breakthrough of their obnoxiously catchy 2008 debut, We Started Nothing. That album, armed with several infectious singles and the then-ubiquitous summer jam "That's Not My Name," was followed up four years later by the eclectic musical patchwork of second album Sounds from Nowheresville, a study in genre exercises that aimed for the colorful versatility of Beck or the Beastie Boys but fell flat for many listeners. For third album Super Critical, the Ting Tings switched gears again, traveling to Ibiza to record the nine decidedly more refined tunes that make up the brief album.
Review Summary: Don't turn your back yetDisappearing in the shadows shortly after the release of their wildly eclectic and inconsistent second album, Sounds From Nowheresville, The Ting Tings rapidly regrouped in Ibiza to plan their next moves. It was very important for them to churn a more consistent record in order to recapture their fans' interest. Two years later, we receive Super Critical, a short and rather sweet effort that might not launch them to the top of the charts once again, but at least confirms us they're not yet ready to fade into obscurity.Channeling their inner George Michael and several late '70s-early '80s funk/disco acts, Katie and Jules wrote nine songs that will suit your cool, retro parties.
After their difficult second album – reportedly torture to make, Welcome to Nowheresville wasn’t much fun to listen to either – the Ting Tings have made things a little easier for themselves on this follow-up. Perhaps too easy: Super Critical, clocking in at just over 30 minutes, pays overt homage to the likes of Prince, Nile Rogers and Stevie Wonder (on the title track, Do It Again and Green Poison, respectively). The Manchester-based duo can still write a catchy tune – a knack that fuelled their 2008 breakout That’s Not My Name – but these songs are all surface, with only the odd hook to snag us.