One Direction at NRG Stadium, 8/22/2014

Photos by Jack Gorman
One Direction, Five Seconds of Summer
NRG Stadium
August 22, 2014

To thrive, boy bands need the right combination of personality and passion. Good songs help too, but you can get away with decent music (at best) if the members of the group have enough charisma.

Personality goes a long way, and with enough of it people will fall head over heels for you, they'll scream themselves hoarse for you, they'll make posters for you and, most importantly, they'll spend lots and lots of money on you...or at least get their parents or legal guardians to do so. NRG Stadium saw an abundance of personality and passion under its roof Friday night, as the two biggest boy bands around and thousands and thousands of their biggest local fans spent the final Friday before school starts together.

Thanks to One Direction and Five Seconds of Summer, there are going to be a lot kids keeping quiet come Monday. Screaming wears a voice out.

Can you quantify passion? Yeah, 5 Seconds of Summer have their share of fans, but watching their performance I found myself wondering about the passion of the band members. Musically they're stronger, the songs on their debut album being stronger than some of the stuff they were playing last year, but they don't seem to be particularly interested in the songs themselves.

There may not be a person in music trying harder to be cool than Michael Clifford, what with his silly bleached hair and torn rock t-shirt, which makes it so weird that he plays his guitar in such a disinterested fashion. His lack of passion was noticeable, but made up for by the fact that drummer Ashton Irwin is extremely likable, the eventual breakout star of the group.

Still, today's teens could do worse than 5 Seconds of Summer. As mentioned, their songs aren't bad even if the performance is kind of lackluster. They've got a year before the play The Woodlands to work out the kinks in their stage demeanor.

Also, kill the covers. There's something really creepy about these dudes singing "Teenage Dream" when you think about the lyrics and the target audience.

Can you quantify personality? It's a shame there isn't a way to scientifically measure that kind of thing, because if there was then we'd have definitive proof that One Direction's Harry Styles has a superhuman amount of charisma. Dude comes off like a legit superstar, constantly aware that there are a ton of eyeballs on him and thus almost constantly entertaining.

Story continues on the next page.

Location Info


NRG Stadium

1 NRG Park, Houston, TX

Category: Music

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