Zayn – Mind Of Mine

 

ZAYN-Mind-of-Mine-Alternate-2016
Alternate album cover

So, here we are. A whole year after ZAYN left One Direction to live his life as a “normal 22-year-old”; which lasted a week, and we now have a brand new album, which so happens to be his debut as a solo artist!

After the whole controversy about him leaving the boy-band and splitting from ex fiance Perrie Edwards, it was questionable at the time about what was next for ZAYN, up until the confirmation of him going solo, it was then the case of, will he do well? And didn’t he just! His debut solo single went #1 worldwide, as well as 3 other chart hits. He has certainly transformed himself to being 1 of 5 people to share the spotlight to having his own, and being the center of attention on social media, and what a time too! What with One Direction going on a break, this gives the perfect time for ZAYN to really show what he’s all about as his own person.

So, the album falls exactly one year of the decision and the news of him leaving the group, and is definitely one to be looking out for. The first four ‘tasters’ came with a bang and did exceedingly well chart wise, and also publicly. ‘PILLOWTALK’ is one of the most talked about songs of 2016 so far and has definitely helped ZAYN accomplish what is a very scary move from a former boyband member.

The album was written by ZAYN himself, as well as a little help from a few others, and it really shows ZAYN’s creative process in creating a project like ‘Mind of Mine.’ The One Direction fans, and jumpover fans which are titled ‘ZQUAD’ (i like what he did there) have really proven that this album has been waited on for what seems a very long time, and both groups of fans have been extremely supportive.

So, of course, I have also been a little excited too as listening to the first 4 singles, I must admit, I have been counting down the days to listen to this, what seems to be, a masterpiece. Judging by the first 4 singles, it does appear that ZAYN has created a pop treasure here, and brings something a little different to what seems to be appearing in the charts these days which is exactly what is needed.

Here it was I had to make of ZAYN’s debut, ‘Mind of Mine’.


REVIEW

1. MiNd oF MiNdd (Intro)
What is a very spiritual opening, this intro seems to transport you into a field full of butterflies and red dojos, as well as blossom. Lots and lots of blossom. You can really checkout ZAYN’s vocals in this little snippet, as well as a hint of indian vocals from the man himself. Is a joy to listen to as you take the first step into this journey.
Rate /10: 6

2. PILLOWTALK
Well, of course, the first song after the intro has to be the worldwide #1 right? What can I say about the song? The figures speak for themselves. Clearly a beautiful song, talking about sex in a beautifully spoken (in this case sung) form, rather than rapping the lyrics ‘I bought some cocaine if you snortin’, and she became a vacuum, put it on my dick like carpet, suck the white off white chocolate’. Disgusting. Anyway, PILLOWTALK is of course, amazing.
Rate /10: 7

3. iT’s YoU
There’s no other way to explain the song other than brilliant. It starts off with a very ‘one-tone’ church-organ like instrument, and then kicks into ZAYN’s beautiful, angelic soft voice and a nice R&B back beat to support it. It has a very strange 60′s retro sound disguising in the background of the song and the way the whole production has come together to compliment his voice. If there’s a song I want the gates of heaven…or hell, I think it’s probably this. Take me, ZAYN, take me.
Rate /10: 7

4. BeFoUr
I do believe with the fact it’s a different sound to what’s currently being played on the radio, I think ZAYN has really bagged himself an incredible debut album and‘BeFoUr’ only proves even more that opinion.
It’s a very mellow R&B song with some very Pet Shop Boys vocals in the first half of the song, and it’s not very extreme and “in your face.” It’s actually a joy to listen to. The guitar in the background is really hugged up by Zayn’s impeccable vocals, with a nice soft beat to even out the balance of genre of the song.
Rate /10: 6

5. sHe
ZAYN having an album without any R&B slotted in, wouldn’t be an album at all, and fortunately, this song is R&B to a to a tee. In terms of how good the song is? I’m not sure. Like, I think it’s good but I don’t think it’s ZAYN defining like the first 4 songs, however, it has a great beat and excellent production, and that note that he holds onto at the last chorus? Sheesh. Let’s hope he can eat ass food as good as he can hold that note. “she” is lucky, whoever “she” is. Gigi you lucky bitch.
Rate /10: 5

6. dRuNk
If this is an advertisement or an invitation for spending the entire summer with ZAYN himself then count me in! Let’s be honest, ZAYN’s sex appeal is very… Up there to say the least, and I’m sure about 97% of us would quite happily engrove in such material with the man himself, in which case, being drunk with him would make things a little more content. Whilst listening to this song, that’s pretty much all I invisioned. Lovely. Anyway, it’s a good song. It does sound very Chris Brown, but I suppose there’s nothing wrong with that. Not the one time anyway… I can’t see this being a favourite among the public, however I can see this being played a lot, particularly by the females.
Rate /10: 5

7. INTERMISSION:flower
Again taking you somewhere far away, this little John Lennon meets A.R Rahman interlude took me flying with some birds along the amazon rainforest, watching life spring into action. It’s lovely to hear that ZAYN’s put in his culture into this album and really made public the beautiful sounds of, not only his voice, but the culture too. Does kind of take you somewhere for a short while, and that’s what music should do.
Rate /10: 6

8. rEaR vIeW
I like this one. Of course, I like the rest but this goes back to ‘a different sound’ thing. It doesn’t sound like anything on the album up until this point, so it’s nice to hear something different from the rest. It does remind me a teeny bit of Irish band The Script, but ZAYN does make it his own, in that very ZAYN sort of way. It’s very pop, and I quite like how his vocals don’t reach too far ahead, and it’s all just very simple. It balances the album out at the right time and it’s definitely one of the most memorable of the album.
Rate /10: 7

9. wRoNg (feat. Kehlani)
I like this one too. I think the more I listen to it, the more I’ll enjoy it. Kehlani really adds to this as well, and I like how it’s shared between them rather than making Kehlani actually sound like she’s a guest on the song. From my understanding, the song is of course, about sex, but ZAYN seems to write so artistically and beautifully about it that it makes it sound more spiritual and full of experience other than just “sex.” It’s produced amazingly well to suit the message, and their voices together, and I honestly can see this being one of those tracks that are being played while couples, or more, do their ‘thang.’
Rate /10: 7

10. fOoL fOr YoU
Oh my god. It’s very rare I find songs that make me shiver and give me goosebumps, but I seemed to have found one. It’s one of those songs that, when you watch a film to, and something really sad happens, this sort of song comes on and then you start crying and get yourself into a big mess and yeah. It’s very The Beatles but it suits ZAYN so well, and if I didn’t fall in love with him before, I just did during that song. It’s so beautiful.
Rate /10: 8

11. BoRdErZ
I am all about honesty, especially when I write about music, so it pains me to say, that this is the most boring one I’ve come across so far. It offers very little in comparison to the rest of the album. I wouldn’t say it’s awful, because it’s not, however I do believe it’s one of the songs on the album that I would have to skip. Nothing stands out, and as far as production, it’s all very the same. In all fairness, it does mix up the sound of the album, and I think it would be a good song to maybe get high to, but I honestly can’t see this being a fan favourite amongst others.
Rate /10: 4

12. tRuTh
I think if I am to listen to this song, I am to lay down on a field somewhere and stare at the clouds on a nice spring day. It almost sounds like ‘Flashing Lights’by Kanye West. I don’t think it’s an amazing song, however, I can see where it’s initially going to go and I think it’s got there, but I don’t again it’s going to be a fan favourite. It’s very R&B/Pop, and does give you a ‘let’s stare at the clouds as they float past above us’ feeling, which I guess is cool. It’s very mellow, and again I think it’d be a great song to listen to if you were high.
Rate /10: 5

13. lUcOzAdE
This electro-pop song about Lucozade seems to be not so bubbly. Rather tasteless actually. I mean, I give him his due, it’s kinda catchy in terms of production, but also really repetitive, but that’s all it really seems to be. Nothing stands out, and unfortunately, it’s another song I would skip. It could be worse, but it could also be a lot better. Kudos for trying.
Rate /10: 4

14. TiO
So it seems ‘TiO’ stands for ‘take it off,’ and it’s actually a very raunchy song. Nothing but black leather, whips and chains here. Kind of like the underground version of ‘Worth It’ mixed with ‘Can’t Feel My Face’, but, better! If ZAYN ever releases a video for this, I can see this making it’s own space on Pornhub or something. It has a very clicky, naughty beat to it, that does make you feel like you need to strip. It helps with the context of the song that’s for sure. Not my favourite on the album but it’s OK. In terms of a song ending the standard version of the album, I personally wouldn’t pick this one but does anyone actually get standard anymore?
Rate /10: 6


Deluxe Edition

15. BLUE
So I find this rather mysterious. It’s clearly a sad song, you can tell just by the name of the title really, but it kind of makes you feel like you’re floating in space watching the Earth rotate. It has sort of a David Bowie feel to it. Again, continues to write such beautiful songs, apart from the fact it sounds very ‘sleepy’, but all the same, still a good song.
Rate /10: 5

16. BRIGHT
If you’re a big lover of Disclosure and ZAYN, or if you think a collaboration between them would be great, then unless it happens, this song is the closest you have. It’s actually a very catchy song. Very techno-dance-pop. It kind of reminds you of being at a party and seeing the sun starting to rise. It’s a night dance song and it really does suit that frame of mind of chilling out after such a wild night. I really like it.
Rate /10: 7

17. LIKE I WOULD
Mind Of Mine isn’t just a slow, sex album. Oh no. It turns out you can take it to the dancefloor as ZAYN’s vocals wrap themselves a choir of another set of vocals, whilst riding along a steady bass and dancey beat.The song really explores the “Michael Jackson” side of ZAYN, I believe. It has that Michael Jackson feel to it. It’s certainly one of those songs that would be remembered for all the right reasons. It’s mini guitar riffs with the echoing of ZAYN’s voice really play on the part as a catchy song. Also kind of reminds me of The Weeknd’s‘Can’t Feel My Face’ but maybe a better version.
Rate /10: 8

18. SHE DON’T LOVE ME
This Miami convertible sunset cruising song is a great song to end to. Really brings the climax down to a halt, which kind of leaves you wanting more, and that’s not a bad thing. This is the perfect ribbon on the rest of the present. It reminds me of a modern-80′s techno key-tar anthem which was re-voiced by a modern artist, which is lovely because although it’s a modern song, it gives a retro feel.
Rate /10: 7


Conclusion

Where do I start? ZAYN has certainly hit the nail on the head with this one hasn’t he? Every track brings you something different compared to the others, and in terms of an album, that’s fantastic, that’s what you aim for, and that’s what he’s done. I was slightly disappointed, because I was expecting something a little bigger perhaps, but then, that would have been too obvious so I can’t fault him with this one can I?

The real question is, do I think that leaving One Direction was a good idea? I believe so. Listening to this album, it’s clear that ZAYN definitely deserves his own platform. He offers something that a LOT of male artists, in fact, NO male artists don’t. There is something about ZAYN that is exceedingly artistic and it’s beautiful to watch. I think this album is definitely the beginning for him, and I have a gut feeling that the second album will be even bigger. In terms of debuts, this is a perfect start. Great songs balanced out with the not-so-great, but it’s still an amazing album. He is definitely the artist to watch because I don’t think anyone has offered anything in music in terms of difference since Gaga back in 2008. ZAYN’s tree of his career is only getting bigger and his artistic expression is only one stroke of paint on an empty canvas, but I do believe in 5-10 years will be looking at a huge star.

This is a great start for a great album for an amazing artist. Well done ZAYN.

Album Percentage – 61%

Is it worth buying? Yes

Favourite song? fOoL fOr YoU

Album Cover /10:
Standard: 6.
 It’s been done before quite a few times. If it wasn’t for ZAYN’s cute little smile it probably would have been a 4.
Alternate: 7. Nothing amazing other than the fact ZAYN looks beautiful and his body is sizzling.

#1 Album? Of course. It definitely deserves a #1 spot and ZAYN’s debut does have some bangers on there so yeah, easily a #1 album.


Support ZAYN

Get ‘Mind of Mine’ here:
iTunes (Standard)
iTunes (Deluxe)
Google Play
Amazon Music (Standard)
Amazon Music (Deluxe)

Vinyl

Stream ZAYN here:
YouTube
Spotify
Apple Music

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