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Backstreet BoysLanxess Arena, Cologne, Germany
20th June 2019
Backstreet Boys - “DNA World Tour”

Last Saturday when TAKE THAT played in Düsseldorf, the motto of the evening was “Back for Good”. This evening could be headlined with “Backstreet’s back, alright”! The new album, ‘DNA’, was released on January 25th and now, BACKSTREET BOYS are on their biggest arena tour in 18 years! They played several shows in May in Germany and now nearly a month later, Cologne is the last German show.

Being on their biggest arena tour in 18 years with the “DNA World Tour” now, the band can be seen on stage within three months where they perform in Europe and North America, including several concerts in Germany. The new album, ‘DNA’, was released on January 25. It includes compositions by Lauv (Charlie XCX), Andy Grammer, Stuart Crichton (DNC) and Mike Sabbath (J Balvin). “In the 26 years since we were founded, with all the ups and downs, we had to learn that it’s not about the individual, but about the good of the band,” says Howie D. “That’s what I love about the album,” adds Kevin Richardson. “We have all combined our influences and styles into a unified work. These songs represent who we are as individuals and who we are as a band. It is our DNA. We are really proud of it.” “The journey continues for us and there is still so much to do,” says Brian Littrell. “We already live the next chapter that has not yet been told. This is exciting.” /

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Music & Performance
So now was the time to compare the shows of BACKSTREET BOYS and TAKE THAT, whom I had seen lately as well. Let me just say: in my opinion, BACKSTREET BOYS won the boy-band battle! While some fans were disappointed by the TAKE THAT show since it was rather short and did not contain much of a “show”, the setlist of BACKSTREET BOYS alone promised a lot. During former German shows, the group has played a whole lot of 33 songs! I was expecting the same for Cologne and of course, so many songs could not be squeezed into an 80 minutes show. And I was definitely not disappointed. Already by arrival – and I arrived much earlier than usually – all parking places were already gone and huge queues of mostly female fans were seen in front of the arena, which was sold out and packed under the roof. When entering the arena, you saw a covered main stage and in front, kind of a pentagonal catwalk, forming a separate area in front of stage, where “golden circle” ticket holders found their place very close to the band. Above this catwalk, a huge light constriction and video screens were placed.

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The audience was, you might have expected, mostly female and you can – maybe – imagine how loud the screams were, when the show finally started. Lucky if you had some earplugs in! Many of them had paper signs, balloons or self-created fan shirts. The show following now was anything you could expect: an extraordinary stage with a fabulous light show, dance choreographies, changing of clothes, a lot of conversation with the audience and handshakes, heartwarming ballads and cheerful dance songs and a band that was on fire. Even though there is a new album out, it were of course the old hits the audience wanted to hear and that were celebrated most. The new songs, as the band even mentioned on stage, were only played as short samples since the fans want to hear the old smashers anyway. Even if you are no fan of such kind of music you had to admit that the five boys exactly know what they do and delivered a passionate show. Plus: their voices sounded amazing and they showed a lot of fun on stage. Generally spoken, this is not just a concert, is it more a revue! Well, you do not want a real band performance anyway and so, also additionally musicians were not necessary and all the music came from backing tape.

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As already mentioned, there was quite some conversation with the audience. They told that their career begun somehow in Germany and how much they love playing there. They spoke about their off-day in Cologne, drinking beer in the beer garden and eating schnitzel and bratwurst. And they mentioned over and over again how grateful they are for their German fans and that they had to give something back after all those years. This meant not only now, but also unworn underwear they threw into the audience. Sure, the show is musically not very advanced, bit the voices were top and the show just amazing. To sum up: it really was fun and no one went home disappointed.

01. Everyone (as an intro)
02. I Wanna Be With You
03. The Call
04. Don’t Want You Back
05. Nobody Else (Brian Solo)
06. New Love
07. Get Down (You’re the One for Me)
08. Chateau (Howie Solo)
09. Show Me the Meaning of Being Lonely
10. Incomplete
11. Undone
12. More Than That
13. The Way It Was (Nick Solo)
14. Chances
15. Shape of My Heart
16. Drowning
17. Passionate (AJ and Kevin Solo)
18. Quit Playing Games (With My Heart)
19. As Long as You Love Me
20. No Place
21. Breathe
22. Don’t Wanna Lose You Now
23. I’ll Never Break Your Heart
24. All I Have to Give
25. Everybody (Backstreet’s Back)
26. We’ve Got It Goin’ On
27. It’s Gotta Be You
28. That’s the Way I Like It
29. Get Another Boyfriend
30. The One
31. I Want It That Way
32. Don’t Go Breaking My Heart
33. Larger Than Life

Music: 9
Performance: 10
Sound: 9
Light: 10
Total: 9.5 / 10

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All pictures by Daniela Vorndran ( /

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