We were so busy bitching about how a new Bat for Lashes song sounds like Gotye, we didn’t even bother realizing there was a mini-controversy brewing about how British boy band One Direction’s new single “Live While We’re Young” apes the guitar riff from the Clash’s “Should I Stay or Should I Go.” Fortunately, there is an entire industry devoted to finding out whether Liam Payne has shaved his head and Harry Styles is a “bonking machine,” so now we have evidence these barely out-of-their-teens pop stars are aware that the Clash is a band that once existed.
The BBC queried the crew about the song’s resemblance. And they responded:
“I assume it must be quite difficult to do a unique riff now because there have been so many songs — surely there’s only so many riffs you can pull out?” Louis Tomlinson said. “It was kind of on purpose, though. It’s a great riff, so…,” added Styles.