Breaking Artist: The Ting Tings

June 4, 2008 11:12 AM ET

Who: The Tings Tings, a New Waving boy/girl duo whose private rave-ups in Manchester had A&R people, record producers and even Rick Rubin personally asking the band for tickets to their shows.

Sounds Like: "We're complete pop freaks," says singer-guitarist Katie White, and she and drummer Jules De Martino back up the claim on their debut album We Started Nothing by combining cardboard-stiff beats, staccato guitar plinks and cheerleader-style chants with Blondie-esque energy.

Vital Stats:

• The duo got their curious band name when White worked at a boutique with a Chinese girl named Ting Ting, which in Mandarin means "band stand." "I thought it was lovely," Katie remembers. "It can also refer to the sound of innovation or an open mind. Like the 'ting' you hear when you get an idea."

• The band already one famous fan in their camp: The Smiths' and Modest Mouse's Johnny Marr, who rents studio space in the band's apartment building, recently told the Tings that "he really loved what they were doing."

• The Tings are example #3454 that a well-placed Apple commercial leads to big sales: Their single "Shut Up and Let Me Go" saw a 2,181 percent sales jump after appearing in an iPod ad in April.

Hear It Now: We Started Nothing is available in stores and on digital music services now. Check out the band performing "Great DJ" above.

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