“Nobody is Listening” Album Review

Just over two years since his last album of 29 songs, Zayn Malik released a new album, “Nobody Is Listening.”

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Patrick Sheehan

Zayn Malik recently released a new album called “Nobody is Listening” it is set to be this weeks new favorite and sold almost 1800 copies on its debut.

COVID-19 has forced many artists to cancel tours, but in a positive light, it has given them an opportunity to sit down and write. One of the many artists who used this to their advantage was Zayn Mailk. Malik dropped his third studio album, “Nobody is Listening”, at midnight on January 15, after teasing it for four months. He dropped its first single, “Better,” in late Sept. of 2020 and his second release, “Vibez,” on Jan. 8, 2021. After the second release, the date of the album release was also revealed to prepare listeners.

 

“Nobody is Listening” has a similar sound and style compared to his previous 29-track album, “Icarus Falls.” However, Variety labeled it as a more R&B album that was less pop by design, containing more ballads and lighter-style music.

 

The album, while unique to the music sitting at the top of the Billboard charts, has a vibe that anyone can get into at the right time and enjoy due to the calming and unpretentious music.

 

“They’re the kind of songs that you listen to at like 3 a.m. when you’re just restless in bed and need something to listen to,” junior Keno Barba said. “This album has some good late night songs that I would love to listen to again and again on one of my playlists.”

 

The album also matched the vibe of several other popular artists such as Rex Orange County, Phil Collins, The Weeknd and other Indie Pop music that has been released lately. His album overall felt similar to 80s R&B with elements of indie pop, soul and funk.

 

The album contained a variety of music to match different moods. The songs “Better,” “Vibez” and “When Love’s Around” have a similar feel to the songs that are the most popular on social platforms; additionally, they are more upbeat.

 

“I liked the beat and it reminded me of other pop music that has been released lately… specifically a couple of songs that have been trending on Tik Tok,” senior Ally Olsen said.

 

“Connexion,” “Calamity,” “River Road,” “Outside” and “Tightrope” gave the album the most R&B feel with a trace of 80s R&B, but they also contain modern elements of hip hop and pop. 

 

“I really like how in ‘Tightrope’ he included a tribute to the late Indian singer Mohammed Rafi and that he sang in Hindi,” Barba said.

 

Malik used this album to refer to his ethnic background of British-Pakistani by using lyrics from a late Mohammad Rafi song. Many fans enjoyed Malik singing the two Hindi lines. Malik did something similar on his first studio album, “Mind of Mine”, where he sang a short song, “INTERMISSION: fLoWer,” completely in Urdu. The references to his culture and background provide an aspect some artists might find hard to tap into, but Malik seems to do it well as the song is one of his most streamed off the album since its release.

 

“Windowsill,”, “Sweat,” and “Unf**kwitable” were songs that gave the funkiest feel to the album and pushed the borders between Indie Pop, R&B and Pop. They connected the album by providing a mix of all the songs and providing the most late-night atmosphere.

 

His new album has introduced many new listeners to his fan base and luckily, for anyone just joining, he has two previous albums: Mind of Mine and Icarus Falls. Mind of Mine, his first solo studio album with 14 songs, peaked at number one on the Billboard Artist 100; his second one, Icarus Falls, listed 29 songs and peaked at 61 on the US Billboard 200.

 

“Nobody is Listening” topped the pre-add Apple Music charts for the week of Jan. 8 to Jan. 14 and entered the top 10 after its release on Jan. 15. While it is not likely Malik will tour the album, it seems to be a massive success.