Way, way back in 2012, a young music industry upstart named Michael Chow formed a band as part of a university assignment.

The task was to showcase students’ music production skills and versatility. So Chow created a fake production company called FROYO and a temporary website.

He followed the apposite steps a new band would follow if they aimed to move out from their rehearsal space (read: bedroom) and into the consciousness of potential fans.

He wrote and recorded some intimidatingly cool songs under the name FROYO – a name he quickly thought of because he wanted something that involved the word “afro”. He uploaded his songs to SoundCloud and triple j Unearthed, and he created all the right social media accounts a band might need to be discovered.

Discovered he was. Not only did Chow gain a high distinction for the assignment, when he went to pull down the website and songs, FROYO had caught the attention of triple j Unearthed’s Dave Ruby Howe, who had given his song a 4-star review. Ruby Howe even compared Chow’s sound to Passion Pit and Penguin Prison.

What’s more, triple j Unearthed had added the track to rotation and a promoter for Oxford Art Factory in Sydney had offered Chow a gig for a month later.

Legend has it that Chow accepted the gig and asked his friend Allyson Montenegro – a classmate with whom he had written and produced demos with in the past – whether she’d like to start a band with him.

He said something along the lines of: “Do you wanna be in a band? Sorry, but the name’s already been decided, and it’s not very Google-friendly… so sorry.”

froyo yellow chairs yellow background
FROYO: Michael Chow and Allyson Montenegro

Since then. Chow and Montenegro have stayed a healthy musical accident; they’ve been kept rather busy with their blend of synth-pop and ’80s nostalgia.

Listen to ‘Pride’ below:

FROYO was made triple j Unearthed Feature Artist in 2016, hit #10 on the Spotify Aus Viral Charts with ‘Pride’, opened up The Plot festival in 2016, they came in Top 5 of the Play School Remix Comp on Unearthed, and supported HARTS at The Metro in 2017.

They even inspired this sign of zeal from one fan, who had FROYO’s lyrics to ‘Pride’ tattooed on him:

Meanwhile, Michael Chow is featured heavily on triple j airwaves sans Montenegro. For over a year now, Chow has been presenting the 1am-6am slot on Saturdays, and his personal Instagram has been blowing up with his regular antics like this:

If you haven’t heard FROYO, or heard of FROYO, then their ‘About’ section of their Facebook page might just be all the primer you need:

FROYO are the soundtrack to a John Hughes movie that never happened. Comprising like-minded kids who met in a classroom, they’re a fun-toting pop group with a swirl of colourful backgrounds and a taste for the 80s.

Originally a production outfit in their early days, they promptly refashioned themselves into a live band and have been serving up sweet spoonfuls of synthpop ever since.

Stream FROYO’s track ‘Darling’ below:

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