Leading Ladies: Girl Groups Appreciation Moment

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Brand new British girl group, M.O, is one to watch for 2014. Courtesy of DropOutUK.

Girl groups are so underrated which is a shame considering the massive amounts of talent and hard work each individual girl group has. It seems as if at any given time, only one girl group can dominate, but why limit yourself to one group when there’s a wide world of other groups to let into your life? Watching the trajectory of a girl group compared to a boy band that was formed at the same time with the same fan-base and general genre of music is very interesting because it does reveal a bit of the gender disparity that still exists in the music industry today (I won’t touch on my theory of female individualism vs. male collectivism in the U.S. today). That’s why I think it’s time to forget boy bands and give girl groups the full attention and love they deserve.

1. M.O (U.K.)

There is no possible way I can talk impartially about M.O because their music is absolutely everything I could ask for from a girl group. One of the few British R&B trios out there now, Annie, Nadine, and Frankee (formerly of duo Mini Viva) have voices that work so well together and apart that it’s a wonder they didn’t form sooner. Their sound is already focused and polished, a debut album shouldn’t be too far now. Giving soul, attitude, and fun, M.O is the group to watch for this year. Just listen to their latest song, “For A Minute”, and try not to jam along. (While you’re at it, just listen to their entire Soundcloud. You’ll thank me later.)

2. Global Icon [G.I.] (South Korea)

Global Icon
Coming from a country that has perfected the pop group formation, it is sometimes difficult to stand out from the various groups that regularly dominate the charts. Not only are other girl groups competition – 2NE1 and Girls’ Generation have already become an international success – but also some boy bands seem to be a veritable hegemony – BIGBANG and its individual members are certainly omnipresent – that it becomes a Herculean task to grab a spot on the South Korean charts. Even so, Global Icon has done a pretty solid job at making themselves known. The five member group has set themselves apart with a fresh, tomboy image, complete with cropped hair and baggy pants. Their EP, “Tremendous”, was released last September and managed to break Top 50 on South Korea’s album charts. Their sound is definitely not fully focused yet but there are hip-hop influences in their music which they can definitely refine. One of the tracks, “Don’t Lie” featuring South Korean rapper Dok2, mixes electro and hip-hop into a song that shows just how tough and hard this group can be.

3. Mutya Keisha Siobhan [MKS] (U.K.)

Mutya Keisha Siobhan
When I heard the original members of the Sugababes were reuniting, I probably let out a high-pitched squeak and prayed to the goddess of pop to make their comeback the best in the history of comebacks. Well, they got really close. Reincarnated as Mutya Keisha Siobhan – the first names of each individual member – the group has slowly worked towards their debut album, releasing a song or two just to tease. And what a tease because with the help of Dev Hynes, their sound has that soulful pop feel that is an instant attention grabber. Besides their amazing cover/remix of Kendrick Lamar’s “Swimming Pools (Drank)”, they released an original single, “Flatline”, last year. It’s like 80s pop never left us. Their album is slated to drop this year but until then, “Flatline” is that essential, nostalgic song that needs to be added on everyone’s road trip playlist.

4. Ladies’ Code (South Korea)

Ladies' Code
This five-piece group formed just last year and already have two top 20 singles. Though a full album has not been released yet, the music they have released has some very retro elements to it, a bit of funk, a bit of big band fun, and some early 00s pop. Upbeat without being overbearing, their music is energizing and uplifting. Their highest charting single, “Hate You”, is equal parts melancholy and dance track, best to play when you’re dancing alone in your room.

More Groups to Love:

Neon jungle (U.K.) – Trouble

Stooshe (U.K.) – F**k Me

Bonde das Maravilhas (Brazil)– Aquecimento Das Maravilhas

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