Zayn’s so in love, you see. But there is little triumphalism. The remainder of Nobody Is Listening seems to soundtrack an era when Malik and Hadid were on-again and off-again. There is pining. There are tortured, oohed-and-aaahed declarations of love.
On Connexion, a guitar’n’fingersnaps track littered with vocal effects (Zayn seems to be endorsing “phyzzikl plezhurrr”), our man is taking the plunge into commitment. “Can we stay in the bedroom?” he pleads. The album’s closing track, River Road, is surprisingly classy: a beatless reverie, it throws back to crooner torch songs and vintage soul.
Zayn slurs, chews and sighs his syllables. “Let me float in ecstasy,” he sighs beatifically, sounding freer than ever before.