Pop group Backstreet Boys have sparked outrage among heavy metal fans in India after it was announced they will follow Iron Maiden as a headliner for the upcoming Rock in India festival. The event marked the first ever rock festival in India when it kicked off in 2008, with Megadeth and Machine Head playing top of the bill. Iron Maiden took the stage in 2009.
But festival organizers have taken an abrupt turn from the heavy metal genre, booking Backstreet Boys and Richard Marx for the 2010 line up. Local music critics have blasted organizers for the shift, but festival bosses are standing by their decision to book the aging teen sensations.
A statement on Rock in India's website reads, "There has been a long-standing request from many music fans to our website that they would like to see mainstream music and also classic rock... Rock in India is a 'music' festival and the headliners have already been announced."
"Rock in India does not mean the 'genre' rock only. Being a fan you have right to an opinion. Being a promoter no artist is big or small to us. All artists are respected equally and not looked down upon just because they are a pop artist! We respect their music!" The Rock in India festival will take place in Delhi on February 20 and in Bangalore on February 22.