Reviews

FLO “3 of Us” EP Review

3 of Us – EP

FLO

  • Genre: R&B/Soul
  • Date: 07 Jul, 2023
  • Content: explicit
  • Track(s): 4
  • An Island Records release; ℗ 2023 Universal Music Operations Limited

Despite the fact that their Missy Elliott-assisted “Fly Girl” is still in rotation, FLO has shocked us with three brand-new songs just as summer begins to heat up. The EP, titled 3 of Us, follows The Lead as FLO’s second EP in preparation for their full-length first album. The new EP, which includes the singles “Control Freak,” “Change,” and “3 of Us,” finds FLO modernizing old R&B songwriting and production tropes with the contemporary edge of today’s attitudes and Afrobeats, respectively.

With two outstanding EPs under their belt, FLO has produced a ton of outstanding music in a surprisingly short period of time. Fans will undoubtedly demand more information about their actual debut album, but between The Lead and the recently released 3 of Us, FLO has given us more than enough brilliantly crafted and superbly executed pop and R&B songs to tide us over.

EP Cover Art

Flo &Quot;3 Of Us&Quot; Ep Review, Yours Truly, Reviews, May 19, 2024

The three members—Jorja Douglas, Stella Quaresma, and Renée Downer—show off their matching tattoos of the number three in the artwork for the EP. The tatted digit also matches the number of tracks on their new EP.

Tracks and Features

The project’s first track, “Control Freak,” is a sassy jab at guys who can’t seem to picture women leading independent lives. Their sweet spot of late ’90s/Y2K hip-hop-inflected R&B production features rousing background strings that add a touch of high drama. The British trio sings, “You be tryna cuff me like the police / When you talkin’ to me, watch your tone, G / Take it slowly, you control freak.”

Both the clever beatboxing interlude between the chorus and second verse and the staccato delivery of the chorus’s first line (“I might let you hold me”) serve as rhythmic templates for the girls to fill out with their rap-sung cadence. The textures of MNEK’s voice complement the whistle register flirtations that adorn the song’s end when he makes an appearance during the bridge to complete some of the lower harmonies.

Then, in “Change,” a 2023 remake of Destiny’s Child’s “Girl,” the young ladies of FLO counsel one another about ain’t shit males and attempt to reason with the most irrational aspects of their minds and hearts. Here, the group prioritizes moving lyrics over showy riffs and harmonic progressions. They caution, “It’s only a matter of time,” adding, “He’s gon’ be creeping around, no, there ain’t no doubt / Coming home late at night / Don’t let him in, you don’t know where he’s been.”

The EP’s afrobeats-infused title track, “3 Of Us,” brings it to a successful conclusion. The FLO ladies reverse the meaning of the famous Brandy and Monica song “The Boy Is Mine.” They decide to get their senses together and let that man go rather than battling with another lady over a man who is fooling both of them.

The song has a similar Y2K R&B/Afrobeats genre with the Happi remix of their breakout smash “Cardboard Box,” so it’s a wise move for them to switch back to a sound that has more personality and less of an overt nod to the past.

Tracklist

NO TITLE ARTIST TIME
1 Control Freak FLO 3:00
2 Change FLO 3:12
3 3 of Us FLO 2:56
4 Suite Life (Familiar) [feat. Bellah] FLO 2:34

EP Theme

Flexing their girl power and having fun while at it.

Production Credits

Gaetan Judd, Jamal Woon, Joe Gosling, MNEK, RELYT & TobiShyBoy produced the extended play.

Stream

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