UK pop quartet, The Vamps, to perform at RedFestDXB

UK pop quartet The Vamps are chirpy young lads who make breezy pop hits of the kind favoured by teenage girls - but don't call them a boy band, says drummer Tristan Evans.

From left, James McVey, Connor Ball, Tristan Evans and Bradley Simpson of The Vamps. Photo by C Flanigan / Getty Images
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Whatever you do, don’t call The Vamps a boy band.

Sure, the UK pop quartet are chirpy young lads who make breezy pop hits of the kind adored by teenage girls, and they broke out after covering One Direction. But there is a crucial difference, says drummer Tristan Evans – they play their own instruments.

We chatted with the 21-year-old during a stopover on the band’s world tour in Australia.

Are you looking forward to some more winter sun?

It’s very exiting, we can’t wait to come to Dubai – as well as play the show, soak up the culture. It’s going to be the first time there – the closest we’ve been is Bahrain, which was fun. But we’ve heard a lot about Dubai.

You lads sound a lot more mature on the new album, Wake Up. Was that a deliberate attempt to grow up?

It actually wasn’t. Taylor Swift was a big inspiration. We didn’t purposefully say, ‘Let’s change our sound’ – it just kind of happened naturally. Apparently it’s very different.

As the drummer, does that make you the quiet one?

No, I’m the clown, I’m just the weird one. Actually, we’re all really weird, which is why we get each other really well.

Who’s the most shy?

I would say [bassist] Connor [Ball].

And the smoothest?

I reckon [lead singer] Brad [Simpson], definitely.

What’s your favourite drummer joke?

What? I actually don’t know any. What’s a drummer joke? Tell me one.

How do you know when the stage is level? The drummer drools out of both sides of his mouth.

Very funny.

Now all the One Direction members are kicking off their solo careers, who do you think will do the best?

I think Harry’s got the best voice, more soulful. I’m not a major, major fan, but we’ve met them a couple of times and they seem really cool lads. I think they’ll chill – I don’t think they’re taking it too seriously, because they’ve just worked so hard in the past five years.

Do you regret starting out with that 1D cover, Live While We're Young?

No, not at all; they’re the biggest boy band in the world. We may not be an a cappella group – I’m the drummer, I can’t sing for toffee – but it’s great to be compared to someone like that. In terms of looks, yeah, we’re very similar, but musically we’re extremely different.

Who’s better dressed, you or them?

I don’t know, who do you think?

Well, I’ve got to say you...

Nah – One Direction, we suck.

Didn’t you guys just win the Scottish Fashion Icon of the Year award, whatever that is...

Con, he won the award.

Right. How long do you spend getting ready?

About 10 minutes. That’s why we’re so late.

Your female fans might want to know – are you single?

Some of us have got girlfriends, some of us are single – so half and half. Brad’s single, I’ll tell you that. Me? I may be dating.

When do you think you’ll split up and do solo stuff?

Me solo would just be an hour of drums. We’ll definitely be a band for as long as we can physically move around the stage.

Who’s the coolest famous person you have met?

Taylor Swift is extremely famous, but she’s so nice to us, a great role model – and an amazing cook.

She cooked for you?

She cooked us supper – we’re good friends. It was a Thai green curry, brown rice – all healthy stuff. It was very nice.

• The Vamps are due to take the stage on Thursday at 9.20pm