Olly Alexander says he and his Years & Years bandmates always argued about the "direction" of the group.

Last year, it was announced that Olly, 31, had split from Mikey Goldsworthy and Emre Türkmen and would be going forward with Years & Years as a solo project and Olly admitted time in the group was difficult as the trio found it hard to agree on anything.

He told NME: "We could never really agree on what we liked in the music and what direction we wanted to go in, so that made the songwriting process difficult.

"It was never lyrics; [Goldsworthy and Türkmen] would never touch lyrics. It was just, like, general direction: how ‘poppy’ something was gonna be. Pop was, like, a dirty world, which is a little crazy."

However, he acknowledged that the disagreements helped to make the music better, saying: "Arguments over music can really help you make something good, and I think it did with us. Like, I really love all the music we made, but it always came with its own complications.

"You’re kind of in a relationship when you’re in a band. I mean, I’m still in a relationship with these people, but it’s just a different one now. It was like a break-up, and then you have to speak about it in interviews.”

However, the break-up was not acrimonious as Goldsworthy is due to tour as part of Years & Years’ live band.

Olly said: "Mikey’s just the best person to have on the road because he just plays his Switch and has bants with the lads."