Zayn drops a thoroughly unexpected funk banger with “Sour Diesel”

Zayn Malik’s solo career since leaving the confines of One Direction has been a mixed bag, a display of massive potential mixed with some notable letdowns. The best tracks from his 2016 debut album¬†Mind of Mine¬†(mostly the ones produced by frequent collaborator Malay) adeptly drew inspiration from moody R&B stars like The Weeknd and Frank Ocean, while showcasing a phenomenal vocal ability and tinges of Zayn’s own Pakistani heritage. However, Zayn has occasionally let his aesthetic slip into generic pop-R&B background noise… while the Taylor Swift duet “I Don’t Wanna Live Forever” was a massive hit, it perhaps best exemplified how Zayn could potentially have his uniqueness watered down by the major label pop machine, and slip into pop star anonymity.

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