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Backstreet Boys Back in Studio

The now-aged but still-recording New Kids on the Block have some whippersnappers competing for the attention of suburban housewives nationwide by the name of the Backstreet Boys.

Brian Littrell, Nick Carter, Howie Dorough and A.J. McLean are looking to give their boy-band brethren a run for their record sales. The quartet has begun working on its sixth studio album, targeted for a late 2008 release, just in time to compete with the latest from NKOTB.

The Backstreet Boys (still sans the retired Kevin Richardson) began cranking on the new material while touring Europe last month, according to Billboard. They may debut some of the material during their North American tour, which runs through August and September, before putting the wraps on the follow-up to 2007's Unbreakable.

Apparently believing that there's not such a thing as too much Backstreet, the boys are also working on various side projects.

McLean revealed in March that he finished his solo set. And Dorough's "halfway" through a Latin-themed CD with singer-producer Jon Secada and George Noriega, the mastermind behind albums for Ricky Martin, Shakira and Jennifer Lopez.

"I've always embraced the Latin rhythms, the Latin sounds, just the music itself," Dorough tells Billboard. "It's just such a feel-good music, and I've always looked up to people like Jon Secada, Ricky Martin, Enrique [Iglesias], who have done a good crossover.

"It's just a mixture of my American roots in pop music meets my Latin roots. It's gonna be a good, kind of eclectic mixture."

He just better hope fans want it that way.

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