Accidental meetings, scanners, lazers, lights, fireworks, video clips, young men, alternate universes, snow, Ashlee Simpson wannabes, fake tantrums, on stage lovemaking, cameras, mobile lights, Mexican waves, crowd roaming, Lleyton Hewitt, Caroline O’Connor, apologies, choreography, koala attack, sweaty men, lost hats, chanting… that’s about the short version LOL
So after all the fussing, my mum and I drove from work with Helen following in her car to the Entertainment Centre. We went to the pay station to pay and noticed security hanging around the back of the Entertainment Centre which made me think someone was coming. We walked out and suddenly Helen says “It’s Brian!” We stopped dead, turned to the side and he was right in front of us (behind the huge gates) signing autographs. Helen was quick enough to grab her camera and take 3 photos of him. While she was on photo detail, I decided to do the autograph thing and hurriedly pulled out my notebook (writing Unaffected DOES come in handy sometimes LOL) then went “What the hell am I doing? I have the CD in my bag!” so I pulled that out, threw everything at mum and tried to coax Brian back to sign my CD cover. Unfortunately we didn’t get an autograph, but the 3 photos were great. We couldn’t believe the coincidence, and of all the ppl it had to be our favourite BSB member. I kept staring at the tattoo on his arm (thinking “oh my god he really does have one!”) and noticing he wasn’t as short as he appears to be in photos… mind u I felt rather short myself being in my converse boots which are like the flattest shoes I have. So with Helen calling out to get a photo to which he jested “They’re the kind I don’t like”, he went on signing, commenting over how old the photos were (one he said “Look at AJ!” and then pulled the 2 finger “I’m cool” kinda pose hehe). He also looked straight at me and Helen and asked about Christian Radio (I think it was whether they got played on it) – someone told him something about that (he drifted off saying this seeing the blank kinda looks we were giving him until one of the other girls answered that she wasn’t sure but maybe). Um so yeah we were yelling out “Brian!” to him to try and get him to come back and sign my CD cover but he had to rush off Then Helen went into total fandom mode squealing she had to call Marisa (her friend that was coming with us who was still at work) and it took her 2 attempts to get the right number LOL but she did and ranted about seeing Brian then just handed it to my mum to explain cause she was too bouncy excited to make sense.
OK so brushing over everything else so I don’t kill my wrists I’m going straight to the concert. We had to be scanned into the venue which was weird but surprisingly no bag searches :\. Then firstly we had to endure
the support act – Kate Alexa. She was a total Ashlee Simpson wannabe. The music was pale, her top far too big and revealing, and her voice nothing to write home about as she paraded around stage like a rock chick wannabe in her attempted teen pop idol image. The best think she did was a cover of the cover of 80s classic “Boys Of Summer”. After that we thought she was getting off stage but NO we had to endure another song or two of utter shite. Gotta be the WORST support act I’ve seen. I was wishing by the 2nd song the sound would cut out as it did to Maree Wilson all those years ago and we wouldn’t have to listen to her anymore.
The Backstreet Boys – completely different story. It is close to, if not the BEST
concert I have been too. All those years ago when I saw Five because they were the only boyband willing to come out to Australia – that show was CRAP compared to this. Even the music beforehand completely revved you up, and I had not seen nor felt anything so impendingly exciting since Savage Garden. We had many rounds of the Mexican Wave, and I swear I felt like I was in an alternate universe – there were SO many guys around us, and up the back of the next section two of them were leading the chant of the band’s name and pumping the air with their fists whilst jumping up and down like they were at a sporting match! Those 2 then promptly ran the length of the right hand side trying to get everyone else to stand up, and they succeeded in getting the girls directly behind them up and clapping and singing “Backstreets Back” which we could only JUST hear. We found it highly amusing I have to say.
The show started promptly. They opened with The Call which was brilliant – they let off pyrotechnic explosions from the back, and the boys had some military style dancing to open with before erupting into full blown choreography that left me gaping at the coordination and skill of the 5. Their vocal talent was equally amazing (or what u could hear over the “They’re here!” screaming.) This then slid easily into My Beautiful Woman which is prominently a Nick Carter vocal song, and the boy (already sweating like a pig – poor guy) decided he was going to cover his head with his hoodie, which left very little to see on camera when they focused so much on him with his covered face. It was a nice up-tempo number that I never appreciated with as much enthusiasm as I did watching it performed live. Most of the in-between is just a blur of hits, but not long after those 2 numbers Howie came up to the front of the stage to welcome us, to give apologies for not performing sooner. I think he was rather taken aback at the support he got from the crowd. I must say both he & Kevin seemed to go into absolute shock when the crowd screamed the house down for them whenever they sang or spoke as if they were the highlighted members of the band and not the ones usually shoved into the background as they tend to be. They each took turns greeting the audience – the 2nd to do so being Brian. I have to say I never expected him to be such a little comedian. After earlier – then during this time he kept doing his Lleyton Hewitt impersonation (fingers to forehead shouting C’MON!) which was really funny and he said he loved Lleyton. Then someone threw two soft toys at him (considering all these were meant to be confiscated before entry) and he caught the koala expertly. Then he was saying “Nice throw” and re-enacted it as if it had hit him in the face (complete with sound effects). Then Nick came out strapped with an acoustic guitar and Brian asked if anyone wanted to hear him play it. He then launched into a whole gay teacher parody routine during this time which was pretty funny. The boy has a lot of impersonations up his sleeve.
Um, what else was there? Oh they had video intercuts which ran on the big screen playing a whole song (whilst they changed or whatever) and giving us footage of old concerts, fans, dance rehearsals, and most entertainingly stuff from when they were REALLY young. Everyone cracked up at the sight of little Nick with the fluffy hair. They also played the film clips for “I Still…” and “Just Want You To Know” (which had Marisa in stitches) whilst they were singing it on stage which was really interesting with the dual effect. Also on stage we had snow falling down for “Siberia” which was an excellent effect I have NEVER seen done before. Um the guys came out in suits and hats ala “All I Have To Give” and did some fancy little hat choreography for that and “As Long As You Love Me”. Humorously Brian dropped his hat and had to continue the choreography without it – so a clasped empty hand was the go. Mind you that goes to show just how professional they are that they didn’t break for any little mishap. Now I’m unsure as to whether Nick decided to be friendly and join him in the hatless parade, or Brian was being comical again, but Nick’s hat managed to be flipped off his head onto the floor so that he had to dance without it, but fortunately for him they didn’t have to move away from their position so one conveniently placed drop-down dance move allowed him to pick it up again. Unfortunately Brian had to wait for the lights to dim before racing across stage to retrieve his then make the dash to the far side for his seat.
They belted out a slow number and departed the stage, leaving AJ alone to do a big vocal gymnastic soul outro. As he stood centre stage he paused as the crowd erupted into screams, civilly removing his hat, bowing slightly and finishing off his solo. As this ended, Nick came back onstage having a fake tantrum moment (you could tell it was fake, he couldn’t stop smiling), throwing his jacket down onto the floor and yelling “What was that? Tell me, what was that? How does AJ do that? I want that! I know he’s the soulful one in the group, and that was a soulful song, but how about we get into some Rock N Roll? I seem to remember a band called (Can’t for the life of me remember – starts with S. There were shirts for them outside and I wondered who the hell they were – tis actually the “fake” band BSB are in that clip) who were big in the 80s.” Then he continued on with “I want you to meet my girlfriend (I at this point feared it was Kate Alexa LOL). Her name’s Helga. I met her in Germany.” *picks up a green electric guitar* “I like to play with her, and during this song I LOVE to make love to her.” (LOL yes I think you mighta guessed by this point Nick is the “Cheesy” one in the band). This launched them into “Just Want You To Know” which travelled along nicely. Nick wanted us to mosh and um make the metal sign in the air, he did a count and I thought it was for that but it was for the exploding fireworks behind them which just made the song all the more terrific.
So skipping along again… AJ started off the getting close to the crowd thing, running along the front row slapping hands. I believe it was he that also jumped off stage and ran through the security/photographers area as well. Nick decided a little later to go one better, coming out into the crowd itself as he walked up the side THEN decided he was going to travel up the first elevation. I have to say we were shocked. Nobody and I mean NOBODY ever does that! That was such a treat to see. Then of course Brian decided to go one better, leaping into the same side section and racing all the way up into the second elevation! :o It took me a little while to figure out who it was by deducing who was missing because he had so many people jump on him, but my whole thought was “How special are those ppl going to feel? They would have got here and hated their seats for being so far back, and then they’re suddenly up close and personal with one of the band members.” AJ was walking across the stage at this point batting together a pair of drumsticks and I truly thought he was going to race up the other side, but he neglected to leave the stage again. Um there was also a moment of bum-shaking for the camera by Nick (he loved playing up to the cameras) which inspired AJ to do the same thing LOL. And all I could think of at that point was “Wouldn’t Ellen love to see this?” I kept wanting to do something to send her so she could see her beloved AJ. And during his little spiel he dedicated one of the slower songs to “all the sexy ladies out there”.
Ok so at the end we rolled out the piano for Kevin to play. He was the last to speak, apologising again for taking so long to come out, saying it had been 13 years but they’d come back and brought the band and felt so blessed to be able to play for us and thanked us for hanging around and still supporting them. He made his Aussie connection by telling us during the break he’d done Chicago on Broadway with Aussie Caroline O’Connor who was in the crowd – he told her to stand up which she did and we finally saw her off to the side. So they did 3 songs this way “Weird World” in which Nick went around rubbing AJ’s head again and making fun of Howie (lyrically suggesting the guys were looking at Howie and the girls looking at him) LOL. Um I can’t remember the 2nd song *eek!* The 3rd was “Incomplete” which they got everyone to pull out their mobile phones for, and to quote Helen “It looked like Christmas” It was so beautiful with all the different colours like fairy lights. Just amazing. Then they said goodbye, went off stage, and came back for a one song encore – “Backstreets Back” I have to say OMG the lazers and the lights, fireworks, choreography, it was like summing up the whole show in one huge explosive song – everyone was up and dancing and it was seriously LIKE AJ was inviting us to party with them all night. I so didn’t want them to leave. Those guys have so much energy and talent and I was in complete awe. It has to be close to, if not THE BEST concert I have been to.
L to R: Brian, Nick, AJ, Kevin, Howie (performing "The Call")
L to R: Brian, Nick, AJ, Kevin, Howie (performing "The Call")
Monday 30th January, 2006 will be a day long remembered.ETA
pics under link - stolen from Gettyimages.com