Aren’t One Direction just that little bit flat?

Kate Livingstone
Kate Livingstone
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I boldly predict this column is going to prove one of my most controversial to date. I’m already bracing myself for the flood of angry emails and sarcastic remarks on Facebook that it will provoke.

This week, I feel I must state an essential truth that a scarily large number of sensible adults seem wilfully oblivious to; One Direction are rubbish.

There, I said it. I had to, after enduring one too many fawning reports about their Edinburgh show this week. TV reporters have been falling over themselves with wildly inaccurate predictions of where the band were staying in Scotland. In the end, the group was flown in on private jet a couple of hours before the gig.

I admit that I’m at least 40 years older than their target market; but, as far as boy-bands go, they are distinctly second-rate.

Now, I’m no pop music snob. I shared my daughter’s love of East 17, Boyzone and Take That. I drew the line at Westlife.

When I was a girl, I screamed until I was blue in the face and waved my tartan scarf until my arms dropped at the Bay City Rollers. I was there when they played a famously riotous show at Edinburgh’s Clerk Street Odeon.

Twenty years later I even bought ‘I’m a Man Not a Boy’ by North and South (remember them?).

But in my opinion, One Direction don’t come close to any of them. Their singles are mostly dire (with a few exceptions). And why do they have to be so dull? Maybe I shouldn’t be surprised, considering they’re managed by Simon Cowell – a man so beige you would struggle to spot him in a dimly-lit room.

Yes, OneD are a good-looking bunch of lads, but they are inoffensive to the point of tedium.

They don’t strike me as the sharpest knives in the drawer. On Tuesday when they played Murrayfield, one of them strolled on stage and bellowed ‘Good evening, Manchester!’.

Then again, they’re young, earning money and making a lot of people happy, so I guess that’s the main thing – but just don’t tell me their music is any good.