Cutting the chase, if anyone wanted to know how great this album is, buckle up your seatbelts because this article is for you. A month ago, I bought Zayn Malik’s Mind of Mine on pre-order, only getting it yesterday during the scheduled release, and it did not disappoint. After getting up from the puddle of my own tears, my first impressions of Zayn’s music had been that it was music you’d listen to on a night out in town with your squad, on a rooftop restaurant, sipping on sangrias while wearing the best clothes you own. For some reason, I imagined a Gillette commercial, but I think I’ve made my point. Zayn’s new music, on many multitudes, is classier and has more of a grown up vibe than that of the music he sang whilst in One Direction. Generally, Zayn’s voice in contrast to One Direction’s music has a soothing tone, working in a perfect harmony with beats, base drops and high notes, resembling artists like The Weeknd.
Almost exactly a year ago, Zayn Javaad Malik left the remnants of what used to be a band that produced good music, One Direction. I’m probably going to get attacked by a Directioner in the streets sooner or later; however no one can deny that the music that One Direction produced had been cramping Zayn’s musical capability. If there’s any proof required, Zayn actually just released his debut album ‘Mind of Mine’ and it’s lit. During his XFactor years in 2010, I was devastated when Zayn had been put in a boy band, when it was completely evident his talent shone brighter individually.
So in 2015 when Zayn had left, I realized I only invested my time in the band because I wanted to listen to Zayn’s voice, and the other 4 members were pretty inconvenient. However, over the past year after leaving One Direction, Malik had been vigorously working with Frank Ocean’s producer, Malay, and artists like Khelani on what may be one of the best albums of 2016. One of the reasons why the album is so phenomenal, apart from the fact that this is the first time Zayn is able to freely express himself with music, is because it features a track called Intermission: Flower, which is sung entirely in Urdu.
It’s a song about the restlessness of a heart when it’s pining for another person, which I think everyone can relate to, but the way Zayn phrases the lyrics so eloquent, you’re left wondering what you just listened to. #ItsLit On many occasions, it’s found that the English language is extremely limiting when it comes to expressing emotion, therefore that’s why the utilisation of Urdu, which is a language renowned for beautiful poetry, is a pretty good move on Zayn’s part. (Below is an excerpt from the song)
“Jab tak is mohabbatkaphoolnakhilay // Until this flower of love does not blossom
Tab tak is dill kosukoonnamiley // is until this heart remains restless.”
While the rest of Zayn’s songs are obviously in English, there are as equally eloquent, even when expressing anger. Like in the 12th track ‘Truth’ in the album, in which there is speculation about how it is about his feelings towards being in One Direction. Malik sings about how it was “never his scene”, how he “got caught up in this game” and that these were never his dreams in the first place. In an interview with FADER magazine, Malik had indeed said that One Direction’s music wasn’t his style, and “it wasn’t something you’d listen to when you’re with your girlfriend”, so obviously Twitter exploded, everyone cohesively shouting back, “so can you do better than One Direction?” – oh boy, did Zayn deliver. ‘Truth’ is sang which such an eloquence, that all the feelings that the media had about Zayn being petty for speaking out in the previous year fade, and all that is left is empathy and respect for him.
Speaking in reference to all of the tracks on the album, I can wholeheartedly say that it is one of the most soothing yet hyped up albums I’ve heard in my entire life. It’s a work of art that goes next to Da Vinci, in terms of artistic complexity, and next to Beethoven for providing such an otherworldly experience of uniqueness. Zayn basically deserves all of the Grammy awards.
Mind of Mine is now available on Spotify, iTunes, and Google Play. Listen to it and change your life.