Nick Carter // Victoria, B.C. Canada

Nick Carter with The New Electric and Dan Talevski -- Sugar Nightclub | Victoria, B.C. Canada | 22 November 2016 | Presented by Atomique Productions & Degree One

Photos Courtesy of: Leanne Green

Immediately after walking into the venue I was struck by the absence of any men in the audience, save for a few less-than-thrilled looking boyfriends who’d been dragged along. Various groups of women, ranging from those in mini dresses and sky-high heels, to those in Backstreet Boys t-shirts proudly holding signs or posters, stood around in anticipation.

My friend, and fellow photographer, Kirsten and I fell somewhere in the middle, dressed as we would for any old Tuesday night. Our anticipation was mounting too though, realizing we were about to see a real-live Backstreet Boy in the flesh. As the first opening band, The New Electric (hailing from Calgary, Alberta) took the stage, the energy started ramping up. By the time former YouTube star Dan Talevski took the stage with his boy-band-esque dance moves, the crowd was already in high-pitched screaming mode. 

As I made my way into the photo pit before Nick’s set, the excitement in the air was palpable. Everyone in the front row was excitedly chatting and taking selfies, pressed against the barricade. As the lights went down, chanting erupted from somewhere near the back of the venue; “Nick! Nick! Nick!”.  As he made his way onto the stage, the venue erupted in guttural screams, the likes of which I hadn’t heard in years. All of a sudden we were all thirteen again, squealing, screaming and singing along (myself included). 

I laughed at one point, noticing that the majority of the hands in the crowd that were reaching towards the stage screaming, sported either a wedding band or engagement ring. These were likely the same women who as teenagers, had posters of Nick in their rooms, hoping that they’d marry him someday. 

While the set started off with his solo work (Blow Your Mind, I’m Taking Off), the third song launched us into Backstreet Boys territory with the 2005 ballad Incomplete. After a mix of his solo work peppered with BSB classics, we were treated to a handful of unplugged songs, including a Wonderwall cover. The second half of Nick’s set was chock-full of classics like Larger Than Life and The Call, complete with the signature dance moves we all know and love. At one point, after pouring a water bottle all over himself and gyrating around the stage, evoking ear-piercing screams from the crowd, Nick stopped to laugh; presumably partly at himself, and partly the crowd’s reaction. After a few more songs off his new album All American, he finished off the night with Everybody, the crowds singing nearly drowning out Nick’s. 

As the show ended, the excited chatter continued, women crowding around each other’s cell phones to look at pictures and exclaim how close they’d been to him while others scrambled to the merch booth. As I headed home, I spotted the Backstreet Boys t-shirt clad women with the signs crowding around the tour bus.