'Boy Band' recap: Top 8 boys perform solos for only five spots in America's final boy band
By Elizabeth Kwiatkowski, 08/18/2017
Boy Band aired its penultimate episode in which the Top 8 boys performed live for five spots in America's final boy band during Thursday night's broadcast on ABC.
With the finale right around the corner, Boy Band architects -- Backstreet Boys member Nick Carter, Spice Girls member Emma Bunton, and music producer Timbaland -- watched the Top 8 boys sing solos for home viewer votes in the hope of securing a spot in the official boy band that will release a new single.
The new track, "Eyes Closed," was written by songwriter Justin Tranter, who is behind 10 major pop hits that have gone platinum -- including "Cake By the Ocean" by DNCE, "Sorry" by Justin Bieber, "Can't Keep My Hands To Myself" by Selena Gomez, and "Issues" by Julia Michaels.
The Top 8 boys are Sergio Calderon, a 16-year-old from Redwood City, CA; Marcus Pendleton, a 16-year-old from Nashville, TN; Mikey Jimenez, a 17-year-old from East Los Angeles, CA; Brady Tutton, a 15-year-old from Shorewood, WI; Jaden Gray, a 16-year-old from Hawthorne, CA; Michael Conor, a 17-year-old from Cleveland, OH; Drew Ramos, a 19-year-old from Bronx, NY; and Chance Perez, a 19-year-old from Seal Beach, CA.
Marcus first took the stage with "Grenade" by Bruno Mars, and Nick said that Michael Jackson and Bobby Brown come to mind when he watches Marcus sing and perform. The architects agreed that Marcus is a leader who deserves to be in the boy band.
Sergio performed "Shape of You" by Ed Sheeran. Timbaland was sorry he ever doubted Sergio to begin with since he had previously battled his way out of the bottom of the pack, and the panel noted they were rooting for him.
Brady took the stage with "I Know I'm Not the Only One" by Sam Smith. Nick explained that Brady had the ladies in the palm of his hand and he gave passion and soul in the performance.
Michael Conor then sang and rapped "Can't Hold Us" by Macklemore and Ryan Lewis. Michael may not be the best singer, but he's a phenomenal rapper, and the architects agreed he'd make history by joining the band, as well as redefine what a boy band really is.
Drew wowed the audience with a performance of "Pillow Talk" by Zayn Malik. The architects agreed there's something very special about Drew and he deserved to make the boy band more than anyone else given his history singing in the New York subway for money for his family. Drew was called "brilliant" by Emma.
Mikey, arguably the underdog in the competition since America had to save him multiple times, sang "Chains" by Nick Jonas. It was an impressive performance and the judges liked how he took control of his own fate on the show.
Jaden then performed "Skyscraper" by Demi Lovato and received a standing ovation from the architects. Timbaland and Emma cried during the performance, and Emma said singing is in his blood and he would bring so much to the final boy band.
At last but not least, clear fan-favorite, Chance, took the stage with an energetic performance of "Man in the Mirror" by Michael Jackson. Nick thanked him for giving America an opportunity to reflect and escape from the competition a little bit, adding that the contestant is "the chance this boy band needs."
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Boy Band's final and official group of five members will win a recording contract with Hollywood Records and perform their new single live next week. The Backstreet Boys will also take the stage in the finale.