Fans were surprised by the unexpected collaboration between Backstreet Boy's AJ McLean and NSYNC's Chris Kirkpatrick with their  new collaborative single "Air" debut.

As reported by Pop Crush, the performance took place in Las Vegas last Saturday and was for a fundraiser project "Victoria's Voice Foundation" dedicated to David Siegel's daughter Victoria who died of drug overdose. 

The dance track was supported by the side band ATCK (All the Cool Kids) which was formed by McLean himself and DJ Lux. 

NSYC and Backstreet Boys Debate on Who's More Superior

The performance was a nostalgic event for many fans even as the two members from rival bands threw friendly banter at each other. During the event, the two debated about which band was more superior by having a riff-off on the two's top hits "I Want it That Way" and "Bye Bye Bye".

Even the event show host Jeff Timmons of 98 Degrees band turned up with hit single "The Hardest thing." In an interview with Variety before the event, the three joked about having a future collaboration together. 

"We're gonna announce the 98 Degrees/Backstreet/*NSYNC World Stadium Tour, come 2022," Timmons said. 

"We've always admired them and certainly would love to do something with all three together.", he added.

Read more: Backstreet Boys, NSYNC, O-Town and 98 Degrees Members Release 'In the End' from 'Dead 7' 

Kirkpatrick Admits Previous Fierce Rivalry with McLean

Their recent performance, as well as their intentions of working together in the future just goes to show how much things have changed since the height of boy band rivalry back in the day.

In fact, NSYNC's Kirkpatrick admits in the interview how he once couldn't stand Backstreet Boys' McLean.

"There was a time when I couldn't be in the same room with this guy," Kirkpatrick said 

"But there's always been a mutual respect, and now that we're all parents, we've grown up. Reflecting on things, it's cool to see what each of the bands did and how it all worked together. It really was this symbiotic relationship with Backstreet, 98 degrees, us and even O-Town and other bands that came in.", he added.

Despite their previous differences and  industry-fueled competitiveness, Kirkpatrick now considers McLean and Timmons as his closest friends. "I look at Jeff and he's become a really great friend and I admire listening" he said. "And, AJ, I've listened to his solo stuff, too. It's so cool to be mentioned with their bands and with these guys.", he said.

"It's pretty much like the Three Stooges," McLean said as he echoed Kirckpatrick's sentiments. In the meantime, McLean has just released his latest single "Love Song Love." Backstreet Boys and NSYNC are also in for another collaboration which they teased to be a significant event for "Celebration of Pride."

Related Article: Backstreet Boys Vs. NSYNC Continues for May Meme Supremacy 

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Written by Nikki A.