Billboard just posted a sneak peek of the dual covers for this week’s issue and if I didn’t know any better, I’d say it was 1999 all over again. The covers declare “We Love Boy Bands” and feature One Direction and The Wanted, two imports from the UK who are bringing back the whole boy band phenomenon from the late ’90s and early ’00s.
Based on the music that gets posted to this blog, I’m guessing many of you are unfamiliar with these two groups, so here’s a rundown:
One Direction placed in third on The X Factor (UK’s American Idol), signed with Columbia Records in the U.S. and debuted their first single, “What Makes You Beautiful” (+76 million YouTube views) this past September. Their first album Up All Night came out in November and became the fastest-selling debut album in the UK in 2011. The boys are between the ages of 18 and 20.
The Wanted has British and Irish members. Their debut single came out in July 2010, followed by an album that October. This past November the group released its second album, which features “Glad You Came” (+27 million views). The members are 18-23 years old.
Time will tell if these two groups will bring back that particular moment in pop music, but at the very least it sure makes for two unique Billboard covers.