Review: Varsity Fanclub

Varsity Fanclub, ‘Varsity Fanclub’: Aidin Vaziri | Isn’t it too early for a boy-band revival? We only successfully rid ourselves of the last batch of frosted-tip dancers and their digitally enhanced falsettos about five years ago. The polite thing to do would be to wait a full decade before introducing a new group into the fray, especially considering that the Jonas Brothers and their guitars have yet to fall from favor with adolescents. But with the music industry going haywire, it seems as if Capitol can’t wait for a group whose faces would look good on lunch boxes (it’s not going to be Coldplay, is it?), so here we have Varsity Fanclub, an outfit so formulaic that it took hours of research to confirm that they were not just some record company executive’s dated attempt at satire. So, yes, they’re real, which is the main thing they have going for them. They’ve also got some of the top purveyors of mall pop providing them with tunes, including Ryan Tedder (One Republic), Evan Bogart (Rihanna), and Diane Warren (Whitney Houston). But the single “Future Love,” a convincing throwback to the heyday of the Backstreet Boys, is as good as it gets. The rest of the album is made up of brain-dead R&B and techno hybrids like “Zero” and “We Will” that make the five guys out front with the funny moves more dispensable than ever.

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