Olly Alexander believes it was “inevitable” that Years & Years would become a solo venture.
The 31-year-old pop star is the only remaining member of the pop group, following the departures Mikey Goldsworthy, Emre Turkmen, Noel Leeman, and Oliver Subria – and the ‘It’s A Sin’ actor has admitted he was calling the shots from the beginning because they “didn’t really have a singer”.
He said: “Any separation is difficult, and I think it went as well as it could, with us. They didn’t really have a singer. And I came in, and I was like, ‘No, I’m the singer, I’ll be writing songs.’ So you can see, over that trajectory, perhaps this was sort of inevitable.”
The ‘Desire’ hitmakers originally formed in 2010, and by 2013, Noel and Oliver had left the band, with Mikey and Emre departing last year, three years after they released their second studio album, ‘Palo Santo’.
In a statement, it was announced that Years & Years would “continue as a solo project” with Olly.
And the TV star has insisted that “going [their] separate ways” was the “best thing” in the end.
Speaking to The Guardian’s Saturday magazine, he explained: “Early on, we were more or less on the same ship, trying to steer in the same direction, and then just clearly we weren’t any more. It was definitely the best thing for us, to go our separate ways, rather than try to make it work.”
The ‘Starstruck’ hitmaker hinted creative differences caused a rift between him and his former bandmates, noting that while he “loves” pop, the rest of the band didn’t feel the same.
He added: “Well, I love pop music. I wanted us to play our song on The X Factor, for instance. Not that that ever happened – we didn’t get booked. But that was a huge issue within the group, because that felt like it would be too pop, and that being on TV like that was kind of lame.”
On his decision to keep using the Years & Years moniker for music projects, despite being a solo artist, Olly reasoned: “I just didn’t want to let Years & Years go. I put so much into it. It was a tricky decision in some ways, because I think, possibly, it might have been a bit simpler for everyone if I had just been like, ‘Oh, I’m a solo artist now.’ But I just didn’t want to.”