Having sold over 65 million records worldwide,TLCare not only the best-selling American girl group of all time; with 4 Grammy Awards, 4 multi-platinum albums (two of which went Diamond), ten Top 10 singles and four Number 1s, theirs is an influence - across pop, hip-hop, R&B, fashion and female friendship - which defined generations. And in 2017 (returning with their first album in fifteen years) continues to define generations.
Here are anthems of respect and empowerment, The Guardian wrote recently, which "stood out above all others...genre-defining pioneers." The Quietus, meanwhile, describes TLC as "one of the most confounding acts to enter the mainstream...upending expectations of what an all-female group should sound like". And right now, as Hunger Magazine put it, "the thirst for the smooth tunes of TLC in these dark and unsettling times is stronger than ever." So much so that the bands first ever UK show recently sold out in mere minutes.
From its opening lyric onwards -"it's been a long, long time coming"-new single 'Way Back' is an effortlessly uplifting return from TLC: blending hip-hop swing, soulful R&B and the group's immediately-identifiable harmonies to classic but contemporary effect.Featuring a guest verse from Snoop Dogg, 'Way Back' describes those relationships which stay with you through good times and bad, and suggests a band not only reflecting on their sometimes-turbulent roots but facing forwards, to a bright future.
'Way Back' formally begins the next chapter of TLC. Having largely stepped back from the public eye since the tragic passing of Lisa 'Left Eye' Lopes, the group are now ready to return to the spotlight. A Kickstarter campaign was launched to contribute towards recording the new album and became the most-funded in the company's history, with the likes of Katy Perry amongst the first to donate. Early live shows as a duo, which saw them play sold out arenas in Japan - where they became the first artist to be awarded MTV's Legend Award since Michael Jackson - and also in the US and Australia illustrate a renewed confidence; mixing iconic hits like 'Waterfalls', 'No Scrubs' and 'Creep' with new material such as 'Way Back'.
In 2017 TLC are back where they belong - with a new single, album, tour, and unquestionably still Crazy, Sexy, Cool.
Via 852 Musiq/ Sony RED