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Backstreet Boys Back to Work

“From ’93 to 2001 we were going non-stop, and we finally got a chance to step back, reflect and really appreciate everything that happened to us,” Brian Littrell says of the Backstreet Boys’ two-year hiatus. The recharged quintet is recording the follow-up to 2001’s Black and Blue in various Los Angeles studios.

The new songs feature a more mature sound for the teen pop idols. Ballads like “You Can Tell Me” and “Love Is” – co-written by Howie Dorough – exude an urban soul vibe a la Britain’s Craig David. And the Boys say the album will touch upon a wealth of styles.

“We’re experimenting with different sounds,” says A.J. McLean. “We’ve experienced all kinds of music over the last two years. Me personally, I’ve gotten into a lot more Seventies rock and funk. Now we’re all bringing even more inspiration to this new record and we’re not limiting ourselves so much.”

To that end, the group plans to work with an array of different collaborators, including the Matrix and the Underdogs. BSBs Kevin Richardson and Nick Carter also plan to write with hip-hop/funk musician Kenna.

The Boys hope to release the new album this summer with a fall tour.

“As long as we five feel that we’re moving in the right direction,” Richardson says, “we’ll keep pressing on.”

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