Following the success of their debut single "Sound of the Underground", which spent four weeks at number one, the group has been successful in achieving a string of twenty consecutive top ten singles (including three more number ones) and two number one albums in the United Kingdom. All of their albums have been certified platinum, with their greatest hits album The Sound of Girls Aloud selling over one million copies. They have been nominated for five BRIT Awards, winning Best Single in 2009 for "The Promise". The group has sold ten million records worldwide.
Girls Aloud's collaborations with Brian Higgins and his songwriting and production team Xenomania have earned the group critical acclaim, due to an innovative approach to mainstream pop music. The group has become one of the few UK reality television acts to achieve continued success, amassing a fortune of £30 million by May 2010. Guinness World Records lists them as "Most Successful Reality TV Group" in the 2007 edition. They also hold the record for "Most Consecutive Top Ten Entries in the UK by a Female Group" in the 2008 edition.
Girls Aloud: Off the Record is a six-episode series recorded by Girls Aloud for E4 that started on April 11, 2006 at 10:30pm. The series follows Girls Aloud in the buildup to their 2006 Chemistry arena tour, from appearing on TV shows to filming the "Whole Lotta History" video in Paris, promoting in Australia and New Zealand, doing promotional appearances in Ibiza and Greece, and going on an ambassadorial trip to China. The series also follows a selection of Girls Aloud's fans, including two Australian fans who spent all their money on tickets to Girls Aloud's Wembley show. The girls' personal lives were featured too - Jesse Metcalfe, Nadine's boyfriend at the time, and Ashley Cole, who was preparing to marry Cheryl, appear in certain episodes. A DVD of the series was released on August 28, 2006.
"Sound of the Underground" is a song by British all-female pop group Girls Aloud, written and produced by Brian Higgins and his production team Xenomania. It was released on 16 December 2002 in the UK, just 16 days after the group was formed on Popstars: The Rivals, and became the year's Christmas number one. The single spent four consecutive weeks at number one, achieving a platinum certification from the British Phonographic Industry. "Sound of the Underground" received a positive response from most music critics. It "proved a first: it was a reality pop record that didn't make you want to do physical harm to everyone involved in its manufacture". The song also served as the title track of Girls Aloud's debut album, Sound of the Underground.
The album was praised by a number of critics. It was described as "their most melancholy album to date", a "break-up album [...] atop a mix of ’80s electro-pop", and "chock-full of those trademark, otherworldy electro-synth songs". The Times declared, Xenomania and Girls Aloud "continue to be as inventive as ever" and BBC Music called the album "pop music at its finest". Out of Control was also a commercial success. It debuted at number one on the UK Albums Chart, becoming their most successful studio album to date. The album's lead single, "The Promise", became Girls Aloud's fourth number one and was followed by "The Loving Kind" (co-written by Pet Shop Boys) and "Untouchable". The album was followed by the Out of Control Tour.