Britain’s answer to T.L.C talk songwriting, ‘90s nostalgia and Wireless Festival exclusively with Wonderland.
Despite it being the end of a very long and tiresome day, Frankee, Annie and Nadine bounce into the room with unquantifiable energy. Decked out in CAT boots, low slung jeans and lashings of gold jewellery, it’s clear from the offset that the M.O girls look the part both on and off-stage. “Do you know what this means,” says Annie. “After this we get to go to Nandos”. With this, all three of the girls start rolling their shoulders and bopping their heads in some sort of celebratory ritual. So, for a start we’ve established that the girls like chicken, but there’s a lot more to know about M.O than that.
In the height of ‘90s regalia the Drake-song named trio are sparking a revival of urban pop and R&B and having already supported Disclosure, Rudimental, Ciara, Wretch 32 and DJ Fresh – the girls are really making a name for themselves. Looking back on their childhoods, whilst Annie was listening to Lauryn Hill and Nadine to J.Lo, Frankee was listening to everything. “Aaliyah, Whitney, Michael Jackson, Bob Marley, Diana Ross and The Supremes,” says Frankie. “I love a bit of Motown”. But when it comes to their sounds, others are only cited as inspiration and they value writing their own material as much as performing. “We like to write songs with messages you know, every song we’ve done has had a message which relates to us,” says Nadine.
When asked which ‘90s girl band they see themselves most like, the decision is unanimous – TLC. “We’re obsessed with TLC,” says Annie. “Have you seen the movie?” says Frankee. “Oh my god, it’s sick, I need to watch that again.” Yet despite strong ‘90s influences set to send any girl band fanatic into a frenzy, there is no chance of M.O getting trapped in a time warp. “We’ve also been working with producers like Gorgon City,” explains Nadine. “They’re someone who people wouldn’t think we would personally work with, so that’s a new angle we’re taking.” Having also co-written their latest single “For a Minute” with rising singer Jess Glynne, M.O are perched on the pinnacle of all things hip and happening right now. That’s exactly why they have been invited to perform at Wireless Festival this summer. “We’ve got something amazing coming up next month that we’re not allowed to talk about,” says Annie. “But we can tell you exclusively that we’ve just confirmed Wireless.”
Aside from their exciting summer, the girls are almost ready to launch their debut album. “We’ve been working on it for the last year, so we feel ready now,” says Annie. “We are making the music that we’ve wanted to hear for so long, it’s what we grew up on so it feels amazing to be doing what we really love.” When asked what we can expect from the album, the answer is exactly what we wanted to hear. “It’s going to be very R&B, ‘90s and there will be some ballads on there too,” says Frankee. “It really relates to us, so hopefully people will get a feel of what we are about. It’s going to be amazing.”
It’s not just through their music that the girls are fronting serious ‘90s vibes. Taking notes from T-Boz, Left Eye and Chilli, the girls know that co-ordination is key and they abide by two style commandments – cropped and oversized. So with their exposed jock bands, crop tops and branded sportswear, they tick each of the all-important boxes. “When it comes to fashion we do the early noughties thing again. Aaliyah with the boxers and all her baggy stuff,” says Frankee. “We love that and we love boys clothes too.” But with regards to designers, KTZ have already styled them and they love Nasir Mazhar. “Nasir, he’s amazing. It’s like old boxing stuff, I told you about it the other day,” Frankie says to Annie and Nadine. “We love people like him, that’s our kind of vibe,” she adds.
Living together in a hotel in London, it’s no wonder the girls are in perfect synch with both sound and style, they could easily be mistaken for sisters. But with so much time spent in the studio, performing and attending events as M.O, whenever the girls manage to get a weekend off they like to head home to their family for some down time. “We’re proper home girls,” says Annie. “It’s so funny because on paper we’d seem like the most boring girls in the world.” But Nadine has something to say about that. “Hang on, I like to go out!” she laughs. So we’ve figured out who the party girl is. After discussing Manchester’s top night spots with Nadine we call it a night, leaving the girls to escape for dinner. “You can mention that we like Nandos by the way,” says Annie. Good, because I already have.
M.O’s Top 10 Female Playlist.
1. TLC – Creep
2. DESTINY’S CHILD – Say My Name
3. JADE – Don’t Walk Away
4. TLC – Waterfall
5. DESTINY’S CHILD – Survivor
6. SPICE GIRLS – Wannabe
7. ALL SAINTS – Never Ever
8. DESTINY’S CHILD – Soldier
9. TLC – Baby baby baby
1O. ALL SAINTS – I Know Where It’s At.
M.O have just been announced to support Little Mix on their forthcoming UK Salute Arena Tour.
‘For A Minute’ is available to buy now
Photo: Juan Jose Ortiz A.
Words: Brooke McCord