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There have been many reports on the reason why Zayn Malik left One Direction in early 2015. Some were outright silly, while some said he was not comfortable being in the group where he claims his personality had taken a beating, to one source claiming the singer did not like the sound the band was producing.
Mind Of Mine is Zayn’s attempt to prove himself as an artist and show his true colours by bringing in a low-key, smoky R&B sound, a far cry from the pop-rock 1D sound that fans have known for so many years.
The area where Zayn moves off is not only in changing the genre of his sound, but also getting bold in his lyrics, something 1D never really dared try.
The toppers on this 18 track album include Pillowtalk that speaks of a place to sleep that can be also used for a quarrel. “It’s a paradise / And it’s a war zone,” sings Zayn. While It’s You speaks of a young and old Zayn. You could also go for the slightly upbeat Befour, or even She and Drunk, the former that talks a bit of the split with his former band 1D.
1D fans will now get a chance to actually hear Zayn’s voice on his solo effort and cherish how crisp, husky, and versatile it truly is. The interlude Flower is sung in Urdu, his father’s native language. The Brit-Pakistani 24-year-old sings: “Jab tak is mohabbat ke phool na khilay / Tab tak is dill ko sukoon na miley” (Until the flower of this love has blossomed/This heart won’t be at peace), against a folk-influenced guitar played in the background.
On the duet with Kehlani on Wrong, Zayn brings a great vocal pitch countering his female vocalist. The mid-tempo, slow jam is brilliant. With four bonus tracks added to the playlist, Zayn gives more to his fans, quenching their thirst for just this One Directioner.
Zayn has taken the path Justin Timberlake of N’SYNC once took. Timberlake knew what he wanted to do with his career and headlined into it with his heart. We see Zayn doing the same and hopefully it does work out in the end. Zayn excels and manages to make his fans happy on his debut effort.