Wednesday, September 5, 2012

NKOTBSB Live in Manila: A Concert Strictly for the Ladies...Really!

June 3, 2012

For a concert that featured acts that are not actively recording or no single on the current charts, the ticket prices for this concert are exorbitant, just slightly below those for Lady Gaga last month.  The Special VIP cost about P13T, Lower Box about P8T, Upper Box about P4T, and General Admission about P1T.  I guess it was the whole concept of bringing in the two biggest boy bands of the past decades together in one concert that was their main selling point.

We have already seen BSB before when they came here in 2006.  We have already seen NKOTB lead singers Jordan Knight and Joey McIntyre when they had their solo concerts here as well.  That was why we initially did not think of watching this one. However, because of another 50% off offer by Groupon, and since my wife really likes BSB, we made a last minute decision to watch.  I just picked up our tickets the afternoon before the concert.

Unlike the Taylor Dayne concert just the other night where we just walked in easily into the Arena, this night had significantly more people.  As early as 5pm there was already a beginning queue. By the time we finished a quick dinner at the mall at 6pm, the line was already across the street, by the new Arena parking building.  It quickly snaked around after we joined the end of the line.  It was already almost 7:30 pm when we crossed the street and finally entered the Arena.  

The first front act was a local boyband called V-Fort who sang a Katy Perry medley among others.  The second front act was again Jay-R (whom we just saw last Friday fronting Taylor Dayne) but he was much better today than the previous time we heard him.  He was accompanied by a Fil-Am (?) rapper named Roscoe.

There was a very long wait after that second front act before the house lights dimmed down again and the stage light show on the long runway in the middle of the VIP section began.  The very loud screaming of the girls was continuous.  A white curtain on stage fell down, and the all nine boys of NKOTBSB appeared on stage.  They started singing "Viva la Vida" by Coldplay and went on to sing a couple of songs I did not recognize.  This opening "song" turned out to be a medley of "Single" (a 2008 song sung by NKOTB with Ne-Yo) and the more familiar "The One" (a song of BSB).  From there, NKOTB and BSB would be coming out alternatingly with their next song numbers.

Honestly I found it difficult to recognize NKOTB songs.  I do not know if it was the sound quality in our area or they are really singing them out of tune.  They sung unfamiliar "Summertime" and "Dirty Dancing" before their more recognizable hit "You Got It (The Right Stuff)."  Then they did a set with their ballad hits:  "Didn't I (Blow Your Mind)," "Valentine Girl," "If You Go Away" (VIDEO) and the Joey McIntyre-led "Please Don't Go Girl."  Then it was set with their fast hits:  "Step by Step," "Cover Girl," "My Favorite Girl," and "Tonight" (where the five split up and mingled closely with the girls in the VIP section).  Jordan Knight had his showcase song "I'll Be Loving You Forever" before the finale. Their songs were really juvenile and cheesy then, as more so now that these are grown men in their 40s singing them (the youngest Joey McIntyre just turned 40 this year)!  It was awkward to see tough "Blue Blood" Donnie Wahlberg singing and dancing a wimpy song like "Cover Girl".  And we still don't know what Jonathan Knight sounded like.

The BSB had more recognizable and "sing-along-able" hits.  They first sang "The Call" (VIDEO), "Get Down," then "Larger than Life".  Then they did their own ballads set:  "Show Me the Meaning of Being Lonely" (VIDEO), "10,000 Promises," "I'll Never Break Your Heart" (where each of the four picked a lucky girl from the audience to join them onstage), "Drowning" and "Incomplete."  Then they had their set of uptempo songs:  "Shape of My Heart," "As Long As You Love Me," "All I Have to Give," "We Got It Goin' On" and "Quit Playing Games (with My Heart)."  Their last song before the finale was "I Want It That Way."  The girls were really screaming their hearts out.  Nick Carter was flirting relentlessly with the girls in the audience, and the screams keep getting louder.  The girl in red whom Nick picked to bring onstage was really pretty.

All nine boys gathered on stage again to say thank you and say good bye to each other and their band as this Manila leg is the final concert of their year-long concert tour.  The atmosphere onstage at this time was relaxed and devoid of dramatic lighting effects.  43-year old Danny Wood of NKOTB displayed some awesome break-dancing moves.  As an answer, crowd-favorite Howie Dorough of BSB countered with his special "talent" of jiggling his butt (seriously!) Then they launched into another joint number entitled "Don't Turn Out the Lights," which unfortunately was unfamiliar and anti-climactic.  

For their "encores", BSB came out first with "Everybody (Backstreet's Back)" while the NKOTB countered with "Hanging Tough."  Then they all came together with a medley/reprise of these two songs.  After which, there was a final big group hug and the concert was over. Women of all ages really love these boy bands and these boys (now men) just love to feed off their screaming.  Men in the audience, at least they had the awesome lighting and pyrotechnic stage effects to keep them attentive.  Final assessment: BSB songs had longer-lasting appeal than any of the NKOTB stuff.  I am sure when you read their song titles, you would know and hum each and every one.  And I still like the Araneta Coliseum acoustics more than this new Arena.  I am sure a review from a female point of view will read totally different from what I just wrote.

No comments:

Post a Comment