They've been dubbed the new Beatles and now British boy band One Direction have the seal of approval from one of the original Fab Four -- Paul McCartney.

"I like One Direction. They're young, beautiful boys and that's the big attraction," the 71-year-old said in an interview with Sky News television on Monday.

"But they can sing, they make good records, so I think that's what I would see in common (with The Beatles) -- girls love them."

He cautioned against taking the comparison too far, however.

"I always think it's a little bit unfortunate when you call (a band) the new Beatles. It can be the kiss of death because people expect you to live up to what we did," he said.

"We did what we did in a particular period in time, which was very different to now. I don't know whether it was easier to be a wild success, but it was different."

McCartney said he also liked Katy Perry, Justin Timberlake and Bruno Mars -- but admitted many of his listening habits these days were formed by his 10-year-old daughter Beatrice.

"For what it is, I think they're really good records. Mind you, I've got a 10-year-old girl so we listen to that kind of stuff," he said.

McCartney was speaking as "New" hit the shelves in Britain, his first album of new solo material in six years.

He has worked with several different producers on the 12-track album, including Paul Epworth, Mark Ronson, Ethan Johns and Giles Martin.

"It's not difficult to come up with something new. To come up with something new which is good is difficult, because you're stacking them against the stuff you've done -- but you've got to just forget that," he said.

"I love writing songs so I just have to say 'don't even try and better the old ones, just get on with it'. So I do. But I love doing it so much that I can't stop."