Zayn’s Debut Album Leaves Directioners Dazed and Confused

Jesse James Greene

March 25 has been a very emotional date for Directioners worldwide. In 2015, much-loved member of One Direction announced his departure from the boy band and the launch of his solo career. 

A year later, Zayn has commemorated the anniversary by releasing his debut solo album “Mind Of Mine,” which has got the attention of everyone, both Directioners and the music community in general, but with mixed reviews.

A lot of his former fan base has expressed negative thoughts about his first project because it’s not like anything they’ve heard from him before, but they need to remember one thing. One Direction was formed by Simon Cowell putting very different individual talents together through the X Factor, so after five years together, creative differences between the band mates are bound to happen.

Malik, who always displayed a passion for the more sensual side of music, left because he no longer could tolerate the lack of creativity that One Direction’s domination in the pop genre fostered.

So, coming out with “Mind of Mine,” Zayn showed his true colors in his preferred music genre, and the results are truly incredible.

Zayn’s music style definitely has caused comparisons to be drawn. Between Chris Brown, Nick Jonas, the Weeknd, Miguel and the track “Fool For You” which sounds like Sam Smith could make an excellent cover to, Malik certainly makes a space for himself in the music industry.

This album definitely has a surprise at the center, being the “Intermission: Flower” track, which he sang in traditional Qawwali style in Urdu. The one-take record undoubtedly creates an incredibly unique sound that we would never have heard if he stayed in the creatively-stagnant environment of his former group.

His first single “PILLOWTALK,” came out at the end of January and marked his rebirth in music, with a music video containing a plethora of visuals and real life love interest Gigi Hadid looking beautiful as always caught in the embrace of the singer.

The singles “Like I Would,,” “It’s You” and “Befour” each further expand Malik’s audience’s expectations for the album, with the saddening and slow falsetto-riddled “It’s You”, and the pounding effects of the other two mixed with electronic and funk influences steadily transform the journey starting with “PILLOWTALK.”

The only song to have a feature and one of my personal favorites, “Wrong” which has the beautifully slick-sounding RnB goddess Kehlani, has a straight-forward and blunt message, telling a naïve person about the real intentions regarding their sexual encounters, stating that the other person is “looking in the wrong place” for their love.

The brusqueness of the lyrics produces a new, mature image of Zayn that many people had previously not conceived yet, and I find it captivating.

Ultimately, Directioners need to get on the band-wagon of what has become Zayn’s immense following like a large majority of critics and the public already has.

They need to be open to the Malik’s genuine musical direction considering he always wanted to sing RnB, and those who are resistant should find peace in Zayn’s newfound happiness to produce music in the way that he is comfortable with, like the rest of the world has.