Girls Aloud, the most successful UK girl group of the century have called it a day. Pulled the pin. Sent the tweet. It's over.
The fulsome five cut the knot with a sharp blade, each sending tweets within minutes of the curtain falling on the final gig of the Ten tour at Liverpool.
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Their decade at the top of the British pop music scene saw them rack up twenty-two consecutive top eleven singles, including four numbers one. They also put out six albums, reaching the top spot twice.
But, as the Spice Girls found with their short-lived reunion, sometimes an idea is more fun on paper than it is in reality. At least Girls Aloud completed their tour. Now, with each of them having different personal ambitions, it's time to say goodbye.
So, which of these five is destined for the biggest personal glory a la Robbie Williams or Victoria Beckham? Who is your money on? Here's a quick survey of the prospects of each based on form up to now...
Got her eye on a solo singing career, following her stint on 'Strictly Come Dancing' and her solo album, which took a nostalgic (ie commercially safe) look at showtime favourites. But her big chance was a headlining spot at the National TV Awards, when her wobbly live debut was blown away by teenager Ella Henderson. Right now, she obviously wants it more than the others, but is hard work enough compared with the beauty of Cheryl and charisma of Sarah?
Released her own album, Insatiable, in 2010, which got to number 20 in the charts - the Irish ones - and number 47 on the UK billboard. Also recorded with Boyz II Men and Jay Sean, although these tracks never saw the light of day. Reportedly approached by Gillette to advertise their line of female razors. If all else fails, she can head back to her bar Nadine's Irish Mist in Orange County, California.
Solo Star Rating:
Sarah Harding spent the Girls Aloud hiatus stretching her screen skills, appearing in 'Bad Boy', 'Freefall' and 'St Trinian's 2', a film to which she also contributed three songs. She also modelled for Ultimo lingerie. A spell in rehab in 2011 sealed her status as the band's wild child, but there has been no falling off the road of the reunion. Arguably the most charismatic of the bandmates, Harding's future success depends on her ability to channel the reckless spirit within.
Solo Star Rating:
Despite the release of her solo album to critical praise but middling sales, Nicola Roberts' finest hour was her campaign to take on tanning beds, which led to a government bill banning their use by under-18s. Her Dainty Doll makeup range for girls with pale skin like herself has also demonstrated her ability to carve her own niche in a crowded celebrity market, and to use her own previous low self-esteem and image hang-ups to positive effect.
By virtue of the double whammy - marriage and divorce from an errant Premier League footballer, and recruitment and sacking by a toilet brush-haired music mogul - Cheryl Cole attained national treasure status in three short years. But while Cheryl can pretty much do what she wants, it seems the Newcastle lass is less keen on promoting herself than she used to be, contenting herself with lucrative shampoo ads, and dancing the night away with a boyfriend who doesn't cheat. Her solo music will continue to sell, with or without Will.i.am's solid patronage, but whether Cheryl's heart is still in it remains to be seen, or whether she might just feel.. been there, done that.
VOTE For Whom You Favour For Solo Stardom Following This Final Girls Aloud Goodbye...