POP – STOP!

Rumours are the rife that the most successful UK teen pop acts of recent times will soon be no more...

A Sunday newspaper has reported that both BOYZONE and the SPICE GIRLS are on the verge of splitting – the former at the height of their success, the latter recoiling from disappointing album sales.

The News Of The World claims that the Spice Girls have no plans for further releases, that they discussed splitting at last week’s MTV Europe Awards, and that Melanie C apologised in tears to Westlife’s Mark Feehily for skirmishes during the week the groups both released their new albums.

A Virgin Records insider is quoted as saying: “The record bosses have had talks with them and some of them blame the girls for not being available in the run-up to the album’s release … The girls spent a lot of time locked away together in Stockholm – and it wasn’t a cheery conversation.”

After hearing that ‘Forever’ would not beat Westlife’s ‘Coast To Coast’ in the UK charts, the Spice Girls claimed that their real hopes were for strong word of mouth to boost album sales in the UK, also claiming that Stateside success was their real priority. Humiliatingly, both contingency plans have fallen through. Word of mouth on ‘Forever’ has been so poor that last night (Sunday) it dropped out of the Top Ten after just two weeks, while American response has been disastrous.

Boyzone boss Louis Walsh, meanwhile, is quoted as saying “It’s the end of the road for Boyzone. They have split up. I no longer manage Boyzone which is a fact. I only manage Ronan (Keating) now.”

Last month Shane Lynch told NME.COM that Boyzone were due to go into the studio next spring, while only a week ago Boyzone were rumoured to be heading off on a farewell tour next summer.