Image Credit: (C) NME UK 2022

By Rachel Dennehy

There once was a time when girl groups were everywhere, they were dominating the charts and taking the world by storm. We had Girls Aloud, Little Mix, Destiny’s Child and, the Spice Girls to name a few. These groups dominated the world with their dedicated fanbases, hit after hit discography in line with headline soldout tours showing the unattainable force that were girl groups. However, in recent years, after our favourite girl groups have gone their separate ways, there now is a gap in the music industry for a new group to take over and the group with the most potential to fill that void that we have been missing is the recent phenomenon that is FLO.

For the first time in a long time, FLO is giving the promising energy that my previously named girl groups all possessed. They can sing, they can dance, and they have a bond that is admirable to their young and growing fanbase. FLO is an emerging R&B girl group from England who are proven to be an overnight success and, without a doubt in a few years with the way their career is heading, success will be inevitable for the trio due to their distinctive musical vision, their mesmerising vocal arrangements and their passionate fanbase which brings back the nostalgia of the early days of girl group triumph. FLO is also bringing sisterhood to the table, not because they need it to sell records but rather because they generally need each other to succeed as proven in the past, without a genuine bond, girl groups become fabricated and destined to fail. Not only that but FLO is bringing back feel-good anthems that have been lost over time. FLO is bringing back old-school R&B and sisterhood, bringing something similar yet eloquently different to the vibes of 90’s girl group Destiny’s Child back to the table.

FLO was formed in 2019 consisting of members Stella Quaresma, Jorja Douglas and Renée Downer and the group would spend the next few years working in the studio cementing their sounds before making their sudden debut in 2022 just after Little Mix commenced their hiatus, making the timing almost perfect for the baton to be passed to the new generation. FLO may be deemed new to the industry by technicalities, but their inescapable discography proves that they have a long legacy waiting for them as the next generation of a widely successful girl group. Whilst their music is predominantly R&B, they are diverse in the way that they incorporate pop and hip-hop influences into their music truly establishing the idea that they have something for everyone, additionally, they have worked many times with the mastermind that is MNEK who has credits with the greatest of the greats including Beyoncé, Zara Larsson, Little Mix and Madonna. Undeniably, this means that FLO has a lot to show, and we are ready for it.

FLO started their music journey with their debut single, “Cardboard Box” which serves as a sassy and fun goodbye to an ex-lover. The song is irresistibly addictive with cheeky lyrics which sets the tone for FLO as a group acting as the first song from their debut extended play which followed with equally good singles, “Summertime” and “Immature.” As Rolling Stone noted that this EP was essential to their career and would assist in them rising to stardom, it still is only the beginning for these girls as this release followed with the trio winning numerous awards recognizing their music and their strive for success including their first ever Brit award. Late last year, the trio surprise released their fans with another extended play entitled “3 of Us” as they completed their highly anticipated debut album.

2024 has been a massive year for FLO, now more than ever before their artistic stamp has gained significant recognition in the audience with them securing performances globally including a performance at the immensely popular Coachella festival. FLO is on the rise and after releasing the immensely catchy singles “Walk Like This” and “Caught Up” from their debut album, it is clear that the future is bright for these young artists. Whilst there have been concerns relating to the future of groups in the music industry, that fear can slowly fade as FLO proves that the younger generation is here to make their mark and that before we know it, groups will be back on the rise dominating the market as they had once before in the early 2000s. For now, we can pass the torch to FLO to lead the way as we watch them deliver vocals, choreography and bop after bop discography showing that FLO are here to stay and I am happy to see that.