NEW YORK — For the Backstreet Boys, the success of their new album In a World Like This is sweeter because it belongs entirely to them.
Though the album, which debuted at No. 5 last week, is their ninth straight Top 10 album, its the first on their own independent label, which they are supporting with a national amphitheater tour.
We outlived our record company, said Nick Carter, calling from a tour stop in Cincinnati. Now, its all up to us.
Q. You guys have definitely taken more control of the music on the new album, writing more than ever before.
A. We have control over the direction of the music that were creating. We decide what we want to put on the album. After 20 years, you get to apply all that experience that youve learned from these record labels. And no one knows how to better run their career after 20 years, more than the artists. No one knows what their fans want more.
Q. Love Somebody is very much your song.
A. Theres a mixture of a lot of great songs on the album. Theres more youthful stuff, theres mature stuff. Theres all sorts of things. Im kind of the happy feel-good writer of the group. Im kind of cheesy in some ways. I love movie music. Im like the Karate Kid theme-song guy. I love songs with that sort of feeling and that have a beat because Im a drummer. I think this song is current. It could be played next to anything on Top 40 radio.
Q. Why wont pop radio play it next to One Direction or Justin Bieber?
A. I cant fault them. I get it. Youth sells. Sex sells. Youve got Justin Bieber. Youve got all these young guys. And youve got a generation of kids wanting to buy this stuff up. Its great. But what frustrates me is that other artists that they play like One Republics Ryan Tedder or will.i.am are around our age. New groups like Imagine Dragons are around our age Thank God we do have a great fan base. I look out and see 15,000 people a night, and we appreciate them beyond belief. But isnt that a market? Couldnt that grow as well? The legacy of the Backstreet Boys is our curse, and its a blessing at the same time.