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TTNG – Disappointment Island
Disappointment Island - Sargent House Records
TTNG, formerly known as This Town Needs Guns, are a trio from Oxford, England, the change of name was necessitated as their appeal grew beyond the UK to countries where their name would have have unfortunate connotations and associations. The band has been existence since 2004 and Tim Collis, lead guitar, is the only remaining member from the original line up, the current formation is augmented by Chris Collis, drums, and Henry Tremain who has swapped roles over the years, but he seems to have settled on bass and vocal duties. Disappointment Island is their third album and follows from 2013’s sophomore album, 22.214.171.124.0.
As with many math rock releases Disappointment Island boasts complex melodies, TTNG top off the complex guitar work with slightly off key emo vocals and a gentle yet relentless drumbeat that manages to keep up with the endless time changes that are a hallmark of math rock. As with other releases of this genre, the lack of variety on Disappointment Island means that I find the songs merging into each other and it becomes a long technical guitar exercise. Destroy The Tabernacle is the highlight on here, it boasts a strong bass line which adds weight to the complex guitar work but it isn’t enough to draw me into the album. TTNG are clearly very proficient musically, and as they’re on their third album and have a US tour lined up maybe it’s just me, as they must be doing something right.
For me this is an appropriately titled album, I don’t see the appeal, to me math rock resembles prog rock with a short attention span, the focus seems to be on making thing as complex as possible and showing your musical proficiency, regardless of whether it’s musically appealing. If you are a fan of TTNG or math rock in general then you should check out Disappointment Island but I’m booking the first flight off the island.
Disappointment Island can be ordered here
TTNG‘s website which has details of their upcoming US tour can be found here