First published on 28 May 2012.
With One Direction
and the Wanted so very hot right now among the teenage girl set, it’s worth remembering those boy bands that have come before. Luckily, there’s a tour in Australia right now to remind you. New Kids on the Block and Backstreet Boys
are back (alright!) with a co-headlining concert and supergroup acronym, NKOTBSB. Together, they had thousands of their loyal fans excitedly descending upon Allphones Arena eager to reminisce on Saturday. We’re happy to report that the vocals and dance moves are still intact, along with the pelvic thrusts and the odd sexy flash of toned skin.
The show’s opening medley of NKOTBSB’s ‘Single’ and BSB’s ‘The One’ with elements of Coldplay’s ‘Viva La Vida’ impressed. Then the tag-teaming began with NKOTB and BSB taking turns performing their hits. It was exhilarating to see one band perform at the base stage, the lights dropping, only to go up again and reveal the next band at the end of the adjoining catwalk stage ready to start performing their own hit. A ’90s girl fantasy.
NKOTB had everyone jumping during the catchy “Oh oh oh oh oh oh...” hook of ‘You Got It (The Right Stuff)’. And it soon became apparent that if this were a battle rather than a collaboration, the boyband elders had it all over the younger BSB as far as vocals were concerned. Joey McIntyre glided his knees along the catwalk before dramatically singing an extended solo on ‘If You Go Away’. Elsewhere, Jordan Knight proved he’d maintained his sweet falsettos in ‘Didn’t I (Blow Your Mind)’ and ‘I’ll Be Loving You Forever’. But it was Donnie Wahlberg who had the crowd most enraptured. And yes, he kissed one lucky girl and threw a shirt into the crowd. So. Very. ’90s.
While NKOTB had the vocal edge, BSB were the stronger dancers. They proved they still had it with sharp moves during the dance break after ‘The Call’. Cheesy-but-nice moments came when they serenaded girls from the audience onstage during ‘I’ll Never Break Your Heart’. Awwwww. Swoon. Heart-melt.
Hit after hit, both bands excited the predominantly female 20- and 30-something audience with their amazing stage presence, surprise appearances among the audience stairways, elements of other songs (including Queen’s ‘We Will Rock You’ and, inevitably, LMFAO’s ‘Party Rock Anthem’) in their performances, pyrotechnics, costume changes and their-slightly-aged-but-still-hot boyband good looks.
No one came away disappointed. Until, that is, they realised it was back to 2012 outside of Allphones Arena.
NKOTBSB played Allphones Arena Sat May 26.