5 Times Boy bands took a ‘break’ when it was really a ‘break up’

One Direction

So best boy band ever in the world ever, ever ever One Direction are breaking up. I know, they say they’re taking a break but is this just an orderly well organised ‘break’ designed to lessen the impact of the inevitable? Is it? No one wants a repeat of the Take That.

But paunchy, awkward Man Band reunions aside, a hiatus is historically the beginning of the end.

N’Sync – The Seven Year Itch

Oh dear lord, what is this shiny nightmare?

These guys took their hiatus after seven years. Like One Direction, their work was relentless over that time, and the guys were exhausted. “The break we’re on was a conscious move. We all wanted to do it, and we were ready to do it. Performing at stadiums every night for 50,000 fans takes a little out of you. I was 14 when we started, and we’ve been touring for the last seven years. The time was right; we were all in the same zone.’ Said Justin Timberlake of the split. Of course he went straight on to release Justified, one of the top pop albums of the naughties and suddenly one wonders if the management were letting the fans, or the rest of the band down gently.

Years: 1995-2002
Album Sales: 50 Million
Website disbanded: 2006
Inevitable reunion: 2013 MTV Awards
What people say now: Thank you for Justin Timberlake.

The Wanted – GONE

Wacky stuff from the worlds most forgettable quintet
Wacky stuff from the worlds most forgettable quintet

Completely manufactured in 2009 by Jayne Collins of The Saturday’s fame – at the beginning of 2014, these one time One Direction rivals (I’m crying with laughter) boy band The Wanted announced they’d be taking a brief hiatus. A year and a half later Jay McGuiness joined the cast of Strictly Come Dancing.

Years: 2009-2014
Album Sales: Who knows?
Website disbanded: Still evidence of dribbling along
Inevitable reunion: TBC, place your bets
What people say now: Why?

Take That – Blame Robbie

Sporting the 90's ill-fated scoop neck t-shirt.
Sporting the 90’s ill-fated scoop neck t-shirt.

The break up of Take That was so traumatic that telephone hotlines were set up by the government to deal with counselling the teenage girls that had poured onto the streets threatening tears and suicide. The catalyst was Robbie Williams leaving the band in 1995 to hang out with Liam Gallagher* – while the four remaining members completed their world tour and released a final single before splitting up in 1996.

Years: 1990-1996
Album Sales:In 2012, the band were announced by Forbes as the fifth highest-earning music stars in the world.
Website disbanded: No, they’re back for good.
Inevitable reunion: 2005
What people say now: Gary Barlow got hot.

*almost true

Boyzone – Worst Name Ever

Waistcoats and shiny pants accessorised with pectoral contouring.

They were put together in 1993 by Louis Walsh (who would go on to inflict us with Westlife). They had a few line ups over the years, but their most famous member Ronan Keating enjoyed success as a solo artist during the groupsboyzone‘hiatus’ which ended up lasting 6 years. Can we call that a break-up? Yes we can. Since their paunchy, manly reunion in 2008, member Steven Lynch has become a hipster and the band have threatened to go on for as long as the Rolling Stones.

Years: 1993-2001
Album Sales: 25 Million
Worst Moment: The Hair
Inevitable reunion: 2008 and still going, but now a Man Band.
Remembered because: Covers. So many Covers.

5ive – Who?

None of these British kids have ever been to an American football match.
None of these British kids have ever been to an American football match.

Formed in 1997 by the same team that originally managed the Spice Girls, the group were mostly known as a five-piece. Hence the name. Geddit? Interestingly when Sean Conlon appeared as a cardboard cut out in the bands ‘hit’ Let’s Dance, he’d actually left the band – a fact the management kept secret from the rest of his bandmates. You would ask questions though, right? About the cardboard cut out?

Years: 1997-2001
Album Sales: 20 Million
Inevitable reunion: Wikipedia refers to their 2006 reunion as ‘unsuccessful’ but they’re still going as a quartet.
Remembered because: I’m not so sure you remembered till you read this.