Why Don’t We review: We've a long way from Peak Boy Band
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Why Don’t We review: We've a long way from Peak Boy Band

Why Don’t We
Metro Theatre, August 31
★★★

If there was any suspicion that we might have reached Peak Boy Band, the audience’s blistering reception of Why Don’t We’s first Australian tour should set your mind at rest.

Aged between 17 to 20, these five Americans have become stars thanks to enormous success on streaming platforms and social media in the past two years - all before the arrival of their debut album 8 Letters, coincidentally released on the same day as this show.

Jonah Marais, Corbyn Besson, Zach Herron, Daniel Seavey, and Jack Avery of 'Why Don't We'.

Jonah Marais, Corbyn Besson, Zach Herron, Daniel Seavey, and Jack Avery of 'Why Don't We'.

It's soon evident that despite efforts to avoid boy-band stereotypes with more bass-heavy tracks, Why Don’t We are still very much following the bubblegum-pop rite of passage of predecessors such as One Direction.

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That isn’t to dismiss them as derivative. The five fluidly move across mainstream genres with great versatility and flair, particulalry evident in a millennial mash-up of Lil Pump’s Gucci Gang, Bruno Mars’ Finesse and Ed Sheeran’s Shape of You.

They all delivered impressively strong solo vocals, which built from the delicate falsettos and quasi-rapping of the verses to authoritative roaring when the choruses lifted off.

But the best moments came via their riveting harmonies, as tight as their meticulous style and stage presence.

The band's youthful exuberance and goofiness resonated with the predominantly early-teen audience as they navigated through their fun and frivolous set accompanied by simple choreography.

They are still discovering their performance capacities and control as a collective but there was a self-assured power in two of their most popular (and innuendo-laced) tracks, Hooked and These Girls. Some of the others blurred into each other but all proved popular with the fans, who screamed every word.

After closing with these and their strongest track, the thunderous Trust Fund Baby (written by Ed Sheeran), the band did not return for an encore despite the fans' chanting for 10 minutes after the lights came up.

No Peak Boy Band here.