Zayn releases first single post-One Direction

 30 Jan 2016 - 15:09

Zayn releases first single post-One Direction
A screenshot of the video released in Youtube.


New York: No longer part of squeaky clean One Direction, Zayn Malik on Friday reintroduced himself as a solo artist -- with an urban vibe.

The former boy band star, now simply calling himself Zayn, announced his first solo album, "Mind of Mine," which will come out on March 25, and released its first single, "Pillowtalk."

A far cry from the innocent tracks of One Direction, "Pillowtalk" features profanity and a racy video in which Zayn dances with model Gigi Hadid.

The 23-year-old Briton recorded the album largely in Los Angeles with the producer Malay, who is best known for his work with Frank Ocean.

In a likely sign of Malay's influence, the music on "Pillowtalk" is noticeably inspired by urban American R&B, moving away from the bubble-gum pop of One Direction.

The album will come out exactly one year after Malik left One Direction, the band that emerged from "The X Factor" television contest in 2010 to become one of the world's best-selling acts.

Despite packing arenas full of screaming teenagers, Zayn said in an interview just ahead of the release of "Pillowtalk" that he had long been unhappy in One Direction.

"I never really wanted to be there in the band," he told Zane Lowe, the head DJ for Apple's Beats 1 radio.

"I just gave it a go because it was there at the time and then when I realized the direction we were going in -- pardon the pun -- with the music, I instantly realized it wasn't for me," he said.

"I couldn't put my input in, I couldn't give my opinion on this or that, because it didn't fit," he said.

Zayn's former band mates in November released a first album without him, "Made in the A.M.," and went on an indefinite hiatus, with member Louis Tomlinson last week becoming a father.