Page 2 - 5 Seconds of Summer Are A Boy Band, But It's Not Because Of Their Music
Made to sell records or not, before 5 Seconds of Summer, this brand of hooky pop-rock was nearly non-existent on the radio. As catchy as it is, and as much as it may belong scattered on the Top 40, current bands similar to 5 Seconds like All Time Low or Mayday Parade wouldn't be found on the radio in a million years. It was 5SOS' boy band affiliation that pushed them over the edge and into the limelight, but their emergence is also not going to open the door for pop-rock bands to do the same. Alex Gaskarth, lead singer of All Time Low, wrote plenty of songs with 5SOS on their debut album. The tracks actually sound like they're straight out of an All Time Low demo pile. Despite the fact that 5SOS essentially sound like a 2006-era ATL, they never had an album that debuted better than number four. There's a reason 5SOS is getting huge when, perhaps, All Time Low may have earned it first - but it doesn't have anything to do with what each band sounds like. For what it's worth, All Time Low were never once considered a boy band.
Rixton is becoming one of the hottest acts in the game – but they’re not a boy band
There are also other occasions where a band is technically manufactured, but the way they're marketed isn't forced. UK group Rixton, for example, plays all their instruments but doesn't have a single song on their EP that's written by them. They aren't touted as the next big boy band and they don't look the part either. Rather, they just have incredibly accessible songs, and they're simply just a pop band. The Vamps? They formed after guitarist James McVey, who was already signed to a management company, searched for possible members on YouTube. Even though a majority of their recent record is written by them, they're still considered a boy band. And sometimes, you even see marketing that is forced, and it doesn't end well. Emblem3 were originally an alternative rock group until their stint on the X Factor landed them with songwriter Savan Kotecha. Their debut full length was pop brilliance, but the band hated the direction that they were told to go in, and none of the singles ended up taking off.
Ultimately, pop bands come in a variety of different ways. They may have been created; they may have been together for years. Maybe they write their own songs; maybe they've never even picked up an instrument. Either way, none of that makes a boy band, because they aren't just groups that make music your little sister likes. In fact, you could even go as far as to say that boy bands don't even exist unless they're specifically made to. They'll never be regarded as legitimate music because the brand that's forced on the general public sticks more than the fact that they might play their instruments or write their own songs. There may even be some boy bands better than a "real" band that sounds the same, but until a boy band can succeed without a deceptive marketing ploy, it's never going to matter.