New York Hammerstein Ballroom

It's all too delicious...

Having taken a risky leap of faith on their latest effort, ‘This Time Around’, and ultimately failing, the [a]Hanson[/a] brood continues to shine on. Fighting to stand out from the boy band hysteria (hey, they actually play instruments!), the brothers [a]Hanson[/a] – namely Ike, Taylor and Zac – dabbled in funky Southern rock and other experimental sounds of the non-bubblegum pop variety. The result was selling far fewer albums in the US, and likely an unmatchable formative experience that will ensure a fruitful future in music. Though they may share the same fanbase as the boy band powerhouses, these guys actually have a shot at longevity.

From Ike‘s oxblood leathers to Taylor in low-slung patchwork pants and Zac‘s Zeppelin tee, tonight the guys are clad in rock garb. And while the boy bands make various costume changes, the only changes in [a]Hanson[/a] are Ike‘s guitars (of which there are quite a few). The guys bust out all the clichid rawk moves, much to the audience’s approval. Ike drops to his knees during guitar solos, Taylor – easily Kurt Cobain‘s Mini-Me – strips off (to an extent) and Zac throws water on the crowd.

And while the guys play all the favourites for a venue full of fans with glow-sticks, handmade signs, lighters and accompanying chaperones, including the singles ‘If Only’ ‘MmmBop’ and ‘Lucy’, they also take a few inspired rock and roll strolls in the form of old-school covers. Following Britney‘s lead, the guys have no qualms recreating The Stones, with a cover of ‘You Can’t Always Get What You Want’. And as if that wasn’t enough, throughout the set they also do versions of Janis Joplin‘s ‘Piece of My Heart’, Chuck Berry‘s ‘Johnny B. Goode’ and Cheap Trick‘s ‘I Want You To Want Me’. Perhaps an attempted rock and roll lesson for a generation of kids who are likely to feel musically robbed in a few years time?

The guys really break out the big guns of credibility when Jonny Lang joins them onstage for a few songs. Everyone loves [a]Hanson[/a], even Jonny Lang. They’re young, innocent, religious rockers…it’s all too delicious. And even if they’re not selling records now, can’t you see Taylor writing and producing in his ’40s, while Britney‘s reduced to making the rounds on the Vegas circuit?