New Kids on the Block – Thankful (EP Review)

New Kids on the Block – Thankful (EP Review)

The Bostonian group, famously known as New Kids on the Block, was conceptualized in 1984 and began grabbing both the stage as well as teenage hearts with their signature dance moves and crooning voices. Soon after, New Kids on the Block, also initialized as NKOTB, became a strong neon green blip on the EKG monitor screen of Pop music. In 1990, they were the recipient of two American Music Awards, an amazing feat for a boy band. They continued their meteoric ascent to teen idol status and enjoyed a good stint in the limelight of fame. Alas, all good things must come to an end and they split up sometime in 1994.

Attempts to reanimate the band failed until 2008 when band members injected a reviving dose of musical epinephrine into the veins of the lifeless body of the band. This epinephrine was their comeback 2008 album, The Block. To all appearances, the reanimation of the band was now complete. Since then, the band has thrived on the Miracle Grow vitamin infusion of adulation of loyal fans and a calendar log full of endless concerts.

These guys have a gut driven determination gene encapsulated in the nucleus of each body cell. Despite a few set-backs, they still went ahead and rolled up their sleeves and put faith to work in the scheme of things! It worked like a lucky charm! To maintain their stellar position within the eyes of their fans and to fan the flames of ardor in the hearts of new recruits, the group has ceaselessly exercised both their vocal chops and bodies by embarking on a strenuous concert tour circuit appropriately entitled, Total Package Tour. Here, the band will share the limelight with two other musical luminaries, Paula Abdul and Boyz II Men. This tour will cover over 40 cities in the US and will be a tour event not to be missed.

The kick off engagement was held on May 12th in Columbus, Ohio. In addition to the mind-boggling concert tour dates, the quintet, New Kids on the Block, has just upped the ante with their recently released EP album –Thankful – and are hitting the ground running with a light and engaging musical repertoire. Absolutely the purrfect musical tracks to listen to for the seasonal transition into summer. The five soundtracks of the appropriately titled album work like the application of soothing balm to tired ears and aching hearts leading to a state of carefree thankfulness!

Released on May 12th, Thankful consists of five new tracks, kicking off with “Heartbeat,” which has a Beatle-esque sound. The lyrics are lighthearted as the music incites the hips to gyrate and legs to move in serpentine motions, the fingers automatically poised to tap to the rhythm of the beat. Then there is title-track “Thankful,” which starts off softly intoned and then builds up to a crescendo of choral reverberation of thankfulness. The Thankful tone may appear generic in nature, however, has a unique personal meaning to the listener. For some, it could reflect the impassioned state to a lover, or to divine interventions, or the forces that be. This is a positive statement that undoubtedly endears this group to their fanbase. Additionally, the single “One More Night” is a wistful ballad by a lover who has seemingly been put on a shelf. 

New Kids on the Block are hands down a vocal group contender reverberating with raw masculine energy making the ladies swoon and the men wishing they were them. Fans can expect that this will not be their last album. To be sure, their Pop star balloon is not yet ready to burst. Overall, Thankful, in its entirety, is easy listening and lighthearted. A state of thankfulness has been espoused by this group and fans should share in such feelings. For these reasons, CrypticRock gives Thankful 5 out of 5 stars.

THE TOTAL PACKAGE TOUR DATES:
Tue, May 23 Dallas, TX American Airlines Center
Wed, May 24 Tulsa, OK BOK Center
Fri, May 26 Phoenix, AZ Talking Stick Resort Arena
Sun, May 28 Las Vegas, NV T-Mobile Arena
Wed, May 31 Fresno, CA Save Mart Center
Thurs, June 1 San Diego, CA Viejas Arena
Fri, June 2 Los Angeles, CA Hollywood Bowl
Sat, June 3 Sacramento, CA Golden 1 Center
Sun, June 4 San Jose, CA SAP Center
Tue, June 6 Portland, OR Moda Center
Wed, June 7 Seattle, WA KeyArena
Fri, June 9 Salt Lake City, UT* Maverik Center
Sat, June 10 Denver, CO Pepsi Center
Sun, June 11 Omaha, NE CenturyLink Center
Mon, June 12 Kansas City, MO Sprint Center
Wed, June 14 St. Paul, MN Xcel Energy Center
Thurs, June 15 Chicago, IL Allstate Arena
Fri, June 16 Chicago, IL Allstate Arena
Sat, June 17 St. Louis, MO Scottrade Center
Sun, June 18 Indianapolis, IN Bankers Life Fieldhouse
Tue, June 20 Toronto, ON Air Canada Centre
Wed, June 21 Toronto, ON Air Canada Centre
Fri, June 23 Buffalo, NY KeyBank Center
Sat, June 24 Philadelphia, PA Wells Fargo Center
Sun, June 25 Washington D.C. Verizon Center
Tue, June 27 Brooklyn, NY Barclays Center
Thurs, June 29 Detroit, MI The Palace of Auburn Hills
Fri, June 30 Cleveland, OH Quicken Loans Arena
Sat, July 1 Pittsburgh, PA PPG Paints Arena
Sun, July 2 Newark, NJ Prudential Center
Wed, July 5 Allentown, PA PPL Center
Thurs, July 6 Uncasville, CT Mohegan Sun Arena
Fri, July 7 Long Island, NY The New Coliseum
Sat, July 8 Boston, MA Fenway Park
Sun, July 9 Albany, NY Times Union Center
Tue, July 11 Raleigh, NC PNC Arena
Thurs, July 13 Charlotte, NC Spectrum Center
Fri, July 14 Atlanta, GA Infinite Energy Center
Sat, July 15 Tampa, FL Amalie Arena
Sun, July 16 Hollywood, FL Hard Rock Live
*NKOTB and Paula Abdul only

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Jackie Knightowl
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