New Kids on The Block @ House of Blues Anaheim - 05/27/2017 - SoCalMusicToday.com

New Kids on The Block @ House of Blues Anaheim – 05/27/2017


 

New Kids On The Block @ House Of Blues Anaheim – 5/27/2017Taking a quick break from their Total Package arena/amphitheater tour (w/ Paula Abdul & Boyz II Men), the age defying New Kids On The Block played an intimate gig at the House of Blues Anaheim on Saturday, May 27th. In what was advertised as a celebration of 25 years of the House of Blues franchise (Anaheim has been home to HOB since only 2001), the show sold out instantly and long lines formed early at the GardenWalk in anticipation of nostalgic night of boy band pop.

With a setlist of roughly 30 songs, NKOTB covered a majority of their vast library which inexplicably dates back over 30 years. Opening the show with a carpet of floor fog and minimal stage lighting, the nearly two hours of screaming from multi-generational females began with the band performing “One More Night”, the lead single off their recent 2017 EP release, Thankful. Exploding into full boy band dance mode and eliciting ear piercing screams from the packed house, the band members (Brothers Jordan & Jonathan Knight, Joey McIntyre, Donnie Wahlberg and Danny Wood) quickly made friends with those in the front row—seemingly supplying high fives to anyone who wanted one. “My Favorite Girl” and “Dirty Dancing” followed and were a great lead into “The Right Stuff”, their very first top 5 single.

By now the fancy jackets that they entered with were long gone, revealing black tank tops…much to the delight of the largely female crowd. At moments the venue had vibes from what I imagine would be similar to a Thunder From Down Under performance. Additionally, confetti and Co2 jets were used throughout the performance, all that was missing was t-shirt cannons.

New Kids On The Block @ House Of Blues Anaheim – 5/27/2017During “Tonight”, Wahlberg was first to jump into the pit. This was a brave feat, where he stayed for not only for the full song but also for “Summertime”. At the same time, McIntyre and Jordan Knight emerged under bright spotlights in the upstairs VIP area.

A quick wardrobe change (to all denim for each band member) after “The Whisper” lead to a long run of non-major hits. McIntyre and Knight took time to recognize Anaheim and the fact that they have been playing venues in town for the past 29 years, including Grad Nights at Disneyland in 1987 and 1988. One lucky fan was brought on stage during “Be My Girl” and later a second generation fan, a teenager named Olivia was serenade by the band on “Happy Birthday”.

A true journey back in time closed out the evening with 4 of their biggest hits in a row. McIntyre took time to share the band’s appreciation and relaying to them that they have the “greatest fans in pop music” before launching into “Please Don’t Go Girl”. “Step By Step” was followed by “I’ll Be Loving You (Forever)”, which was their very first #1 single. At this point and after nearly two hours and over 30 songs, there was one missing piece to this puzzle…”Hangin’ Tough”. With huge fanfare and a final salute from the band, they powered through this pop classic.

Earlier in the evening, a quick 4 song set by fellow boy band O-Town was a mere appetizer for the crowd—many of which were surprised as there was no prior announcement of opening support for NKOTB. The band that was formed on the ABC reality show ‘Making The Band’ is best known for their 2001 hits “All Or Nothing” and “Liquid Dreams”, both of which were played during their brief run Saturday evening.

This week NKOTB continue on their Total Package Tour with Paula Abdul and Boyz II Men, including SoCal stops this Thursday (June 1st) in Chula Vista at the Mattress Firm Amphitheater and a Friday (June 2nd) stop at the Hollywood Bowl. The tour runs through mid-July, including a hometown show at Fenway Park in Boston on July 8th.

New Kids On The Block

O-Town