When the Backstreet Boys recorded "Everybody (Backstreet's Back)" in 1997, it's a safe bet they never dreamed they'd be opening a concert with it in 2010. But that's exactly what they did on Saturday evening at the Gibson Amphitheatre in front of a packed audience.
Granted, the boys--men--aren't performing to sold-out stadiums full of hysterical preteens any more, but that doesn't mean they don't have a solid fan base of loyal fans, many who have been fans of the group since the beginning. Which explains why members AJ McLean, Brian Littrell, Nick Carter and Howie Dorough make sure to include a lot of their older hits into their performances. In between plugging songs from their latest album--This is Us, released in October 2009--the group worked in "Quit Playin' Games with My Heart," "As Long As You Love Me," "More Than That," "Show Me The Meaning of Being Lonely," "The One," "Larger Than Life," and "The Call." There were even callbacks to old videos, with futuristic costumes donned for "Larger than Life" and the video for "I'll Never Break Your Heart" playing on the back screen while the Boys sang to the audience and threw roses.
This tour marked somewhat of a return to the high-energy shows of the Boys' past--almost every song featured choreography, some even had female backup dancers wearing tiny outfits. The group pounded the stage for over an hour and a half, with only a few short breaks for costume changes. The energy stayed high throughout the entire show, keeping fans on their feet screaming and dancing the entire time.
Though they've been performing a lot of the same songs for over a decade, the Boys still appear to enjoy thrilling their fans time and again, peppering the audience with waves, winks, and coy smiles--even venturing into the audience for some face-time with fans (which resulted in Nick losing his scarf and nearly his shirt). And the female fans still enjoy indulging in a heavy dose of nostalgia and remembering the days when an attractive pop star could make them swoon.
However, most of the Backstreet Boys are married now--Brian's son, Baylee, even came on stage before the show to introduce the group--as are many of the fans. But although time has changed the lives and appearance of everyone involved, the solid harmonies, fun songs, and genuine connection with the fans are still there.