"No Good Advice" is a song by British all-female pop group Girls Aloud, taken from their debut album Sound of the Underground (2003). The song was written by Aqua's Lene Nystrøm Rasted, Miranda Cooper, Brian Higgins and his production team Xenomania, and produced by Higgins and Xenomania. It has themes of rebellion, reflecting Higgins' general mood of failure after a business partnership fell through. Following the overwhelming success of Girls Aloud's debut single "Sound of the Underground", the group waited five months until May 2003 before releasing the follow-up. "No Good Advice" cemented their success when it peaked at number two on the UK Singles Chart.
The music video features Girls Aloud dressed in futuristic silver outfits and hologram effects. "No Good Advice" was promoted through various live performances and has since been performed on Girls Aloud's first three concert tours. Described as "a disco track with guitar", the song has heavy 1980s influences. The track was lauded by many contemporary music critics, who deemed it a worthy sequel to its predecessor and praised Higgins' production.
Musically, the song was labelled "a disco track with guitar - a cross between Blondie and The Bangles." The song was written in the key of Bb minor.The song consists of a verse followed by a bridge and chorus. In place of a middle 8, there is a guitar solo instead. The song ends with a spoken outro.
Originally written for Miranda Cooper under the pseudonym Moonbaby, "No Good Advice" is seemingly about a rebellious girl who doesn't need "no good advice" and does things independently. However, according to an interview for The Guardian in July 2004, Brian Higgins said that the song reflected his general mood of failure after a special deal between Xenomania and London Records fell through in 2000, and about persisting in spite of what people told him to do or not to do. The song's chorus originally began with the phrase "I don't like fried rice"."No Good Advice" was sung over a rave backing track, until different Xenomania musicians were asked to contribute new backing tracks. Higgins was inspired by indie rock. He stated, "pop music was on its backside and indie music was about to rise [...] The guitar riff on No Good Advice is very very similar to the riff on the track Michael by Franz Ferdinand."
Brian Higgins said that Girls Aloud initially didn't like the song - "we played them some of it, and they said: 'That's not our sound.' I objected to the use of that phrase 'our sound'. I told them they had five minutes to talk about whether or not they wanted to continue with me. They went away and spoke about it and since then it's been fine. They come in expecting to work, and there's a trust there which, I think, dates back to that day."
It took Girls Aloud five months to release "No Good Advice". Nadine Coyle said in an interview with The Lipster, "We were No.1 for a month straight and then getting songs from all these other producers and we were, 'Nah, don't like it'. We waited from December to May before releasing a second single because we knew it had to be our strong point or we might as well kiss our careers goodbye." Kimberley Walsh further exclaimed, "We knew it was strong enough to come back with." Girls Aloud reportedly had to re-record "No Good Advice" because "it features rude words", such as "damn" and "shit". However, the line "Here I am / Dirty hands, I don't give a damn" was kept intact. An explicit version of the song appears on the special edition bonus disc of The Sound of Girls Aloud, replacing the lyric "shut your mouth because it might show" with "shut your mouth because your shit might show". Furthermore, an early demo of the song appears on a singles boxset released in 2009.
The song was released as a CD single, featuring an exclusive b-side entitled "On a Round", which was covered by Jolin Tsai in 2008. The CD format also includes the Dreadzone Vocal Mix of "No Good Advice" and its music video. The DVD single did not actually feature the "No Good Advice" music video, just a photo gallery and behind-the-scenes footage. It did, however, include audio of the track and the video to "Sound of the Underground". Another remix, the Doublefunk Vocal Mix, was later featured on the "Life Got Cold" single and the remix album Mixed Up