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News Story

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NSYNC at Compac Center

- Steve Soto
More News >>

'N Sync

At their San Jose concert Friday night 'NSync went through their entire first song without as much as a moon walk.

Taking a more adult attitude to performing, the world famous boy band started off their 2002 Celebrity tour with a strut. A more confident look at me approach to live performances. I think that these boys are all grown up.

But they didn't bust any of those highly choreographed, Michael Jackson-like moves until the second song, ``Bye Bye Bye."

This may not sound like a big deal, but in the world of bubble gum and boy bands, it constitutes a major development in the move up the food chain of rock.

No, 'N Sync is not yet challenging U2 for greatest rock band title, but the group is learning how to flex some musical muscle and still give the fans - mostly hysterical teen-age girls - what they want.

During the hour and a half show, 'N Sync, backed by an eight-piece live band, delivered the requisite hits such as ``It's Gonna Be Me," ``God Must Have Spent a Little More Time on You" and ``Tearin' Up My Heart." The young men, who range in age from 21 (Timberlake) to 30 (Kirkpatrick), did enough of their fancy, highly aerobic dancing to satisfy the arena's thousands of screaming fans.

After frisky renditions of ``Celebrity" and ``Up Against the Wall," the boys left the stage to change costumes. In their absence, a giant catwalk descended from the rafters.

The singers, wearing black suits with white ties, reappeared and climbed aboard the walkway. As they made their way to the flying stage, elevated over the mix board at the rear of the arena, they sang the Beatles' ``She Loves You."

Once situated on their perch, 'N Sync launched into a full-on Beatles tribute consisting of ``I Wanna Hold Your Hand," ``Hey Jude" (capped with erupting confetti cannons) and ``Twist and Shout."

Taking the cover segment one step further, Chasez took on lead vocal for Christopher Cross' ``Sailing." This mellow chestnut, which the band recorded on its eponymous 1998 debut, has been spiffed up with a lively new arrangement that incorporates sparky electronica and traces of trip-hop.

With four costume changes - mostly variations on jeans and T-shirts - and more indoor pyrotechnics than an arsonist's convention, the Celebrity 2002 tour has its share of dazzle.

But the real success comes from 'N Sync's realization that the best, most entertaining special effect of all is enthusiastically performed music the crowd wants to hear.

Questions & Answers

Was Britney there?
It was called the 'N Sync Celebrity 2002 tour. What do you think?

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