A fizzy cocktail of sleek electronic dance-pop and cute, quirky hooks, Fromis 9 are a South Korean girl group whose nine members were culled from the 2017 Mnet reality show Idol School. Beginning with their 2018 debut EP, To. Heart, the group's bright clean sound was a success, reaching number four on the Gaon chart, a feat they bested a year later when their album Fun Factory hit number two.
In the summer of 2017, entertainment group CJ E&M launched a reality talent show that involved contestants attending a sort of pop music survival course called Idol School. In addition to singing and dancing classes, contestants also learned about publicity and various facets of the music industry. The public voted each week on which students would move forward and at the end of the 11 weeks, the surviving nine competitors formed the lineup of a new girl group who would record for the Stone Music Entertainment division. The name Fromis 9 is a play on the group's origin -- "from I.S." (Idol School) -- and is pronounced like "promise."
Consisting of singers, dancers, and rappers Lee Sae-rom, Song Ha-young, Jang Gyu-ri, Park Ji-won, Roh Ji-sun, Lee Seo-yeon, Lee Chae-young, Lee Na-gyung, and Baek Ji-heon, Fromis 9 made their live premier in Japan at the 2017 Mnet Asian Music Awards with their energetic pre-debut single "Glass Shoes." Their official debut, To. Heart, appeared in January 2018 notching a number four placement on the Gaon Album Chart. For a few months that summer, Fromis 9 were without lead vocalist and face of the group Jang Gyu-ri, who was off competing on another reality show, Produce 48. During her absence, the remaining eight members released their second EP, To. Day, which also enjoyed a number four chart placement. Following Jang's return, the group moved to Off the Record Entertainment, which released their first album, From.9, which featured the sugary hit single "Love Bomb." After acting in the web series Welcome to Heal Inn, Fromis 9 returned in 2019 with another album, Fun Factory, hitting number two on the chart and yielding the infectious single "Fun!" ~ Timothy Monger