On his new EP, Joey McIntyre makes magic.
Joey will drop his most personal, powerful and passionate collection of solo music this fall. Over the course of these seven songs, the multi-platinum pop maestro explores relationships and love, while rocking out like never before. Airtight beats morph into massive melodies as Joey's voice flies on upbeat anthems like "Out of Nothing At All." Meanwhile, "Here We Go Again" shines with his unparalleled delivery. With an undeniable swagger and serious soul, Joey's built an audio rollercoaster.
After finishing the last leg of the New Kids on the Block reunion tour, Joey locked himself in a Los Angeles studio with the producing team of Brent Paschke, Drew Ryan Scott and Gabe Lopez in July 2009. After a few weeks, they finished up the entire EP—writing and recording all seven songs.
Joey describes the new sound best. "It's pop, dance urban rock. There's a thriving energy and urgency in the music that represents where I am right now. I want to get in your face and rock."
Joey has always rocked crowds. As part of the never-ending pop phenomenon that is New Kids, he became an icon, with over 80 million albums sold and countless sold out shows worldwide. However, on his solo material, he truly gets the chance to shine. In 1998, he dropped his debut, Stay the Same. Elevated by the chart-topping title track, the record quickly exceeded platinum status. Joey followed it up with fan favorite Meet Joe Mac in 2001. He continued to tour the world incessantly. However, he found the time to drop 8:09 in 2004 and a very personal collection of cover tunes, Talk to Me, in 2006. This fifth album shows Joey at his finest and fieriest though.
"I like to be involved in the process of writing music," says Joey. "I have to believe in what I'm singing. This album is the culmination of all of my other albums. I've taken the best elements of all of them and incorporated everything into what I'm doing now. When I tour with New Kids, I'm involved with music constantly. There's so much inspiration. It's amazing being a part of a team, but I also want to express myself on my own terms. That was the seed for this music."
Joey continues to pull from his vast stage and screen resume, creating a unique and vibrant performance style on tape. He's engaged audiences as a season regular on David Kelley's Boston Public and in films such as On Broadway and Tony 'n' Tina's Wedding—sharing the screen with everyone from Adrian Grenier to Mila Kunis. He also had a successful stint on the Broadway production of Wicked.
"This music has a performance element," he continues. "I've always been very visual when I'm writing music. A song like 'Here We Go Again' is autobiographical, but it's got that theatrical sensibility. At the same time, it's universal. The more personal you get with music, the more people can relate to it. Being in show business, you have an inner dialogue daily about who you want to be, what you want to be, how you want to do it and if it's worth it. However, you have all of these amazing fans that drive you to make more music."
The fans will love his new music the most. Joey got the chance to push boundaries, and pursue each and every creative impulse he had. He shows, "As you grow, you become clearer about who you are as an artist. I'm not just one thing. I love writing music and having that outlet to talk about everything that I'm feeling."
In order to preserve his vision, Joey's releasing the album independently online. He's completely eschewing the major label system and bringing his music directly to the fans. Everyone will be able to purchase the EP exclusively online via iTunes and other digital retailers this fall. "I want to share this music with my fans as soon as I can. When you release an album independently, there's a lot more work involved, but I think the reward is greater. The business has changed so much. The fans can get to the music right away digitally, and I like the grass roots vibe of working independently."
The songs themselves have an organic and natural feel. Joey tapped into something very tangible while in the studio. Even though the album's got the requisite club gusto on bangers like "Out Of Nothing At All," it's also got heart. Joey dedicated "The Difference" to his infant son. "I want my son to listen to the music and like it. I wrote 'The Difference' for him on piano about a year ago. We brought it to the next level in the studio though." It's one of the record's standouts, and it's bound to be a crowd pleaser when Joey gets behind that piano on stage.
Sultry and sexy come-on "I'm Waiting" is on the opposite end of the spectrum. "It's out there," laughs Joey. "You're always going to have lust, passion and longing. That song is basically about a guy who's waiting for a chick that he's crazy about. That's a big part of life—letting your desires out there, exposing them and showing your cards a little bit. When you don't worry about the results or exterior factors, you can really create some beautiful music. That's what happened in this case."
It happened on the whole album because Joey let the music speak through him. "There's nothing like writing music that you believe in," he says. "It's an amazing high. You hear these industry stories where bands write an incredible record in only ten days, and it's this really special thing. That's the feeling that we had."
However, with a lot of touring on the horizon, Joey's got a lot more to give listeners. "I want the fans to feel the butterflies that I felt when I was making this album. On this record, I tried to get honest, raw and fun. I've always been real, but I feel like I showed even more of myself. If I can be so bold, I'd like to inspire other people to open up as well. It's not sugar coated. It's not covered up. This is me."
That's the best thing this album could be. Rick Florino