Zayn Malik released his second album, “Icarus Falls,” and had been teasing fans over the past few months prior to the release date by steadily releasing nine songs like “Entertainer,” and the Nicki Minaj featured “No Candle No Light.”
Malik dropped his first album in 2016, “Mind of Mine” after leaving One Direction in 2015 and his impressive vocals and success continues to grow. He later went on to record a song for the movie Fifty Shades Darker with Taylor Swift called “I Don’t Wanna Live Forever,” and the duo ended up winning a VMA for best collaboration in 2017. In the same year, he collaborated with Sia, singer and songwriter, in “Dusk Till Dawn” and “Still Got Time” with rapper PartyNextDoor.
The UK native kept fans waiting for more than two years for his second solo album, in which Malik shows off his soulful falsetto in songs about hope, love, seduction and evasion. The name of the album seems to be inspired by the greek mythology character, Icarus. Icarus was the son of the famous craftsman Daedalus, who was the creator of the labyrinth. Icarus was described as young and too excited about flying and was warned by his father that his behavior was dangerous.
He briefly mentions his 1D years in an upbeat tune “Good Years” and one about his fears with bad publicity on “You Wish You Knew.” Fans have been swooning with the singer’s R&B vibes. The first 12 tracks seem to praise long-time girlfriend Gigi Hadid with love as he sings, “Honestly she’s the only one that’s watching over me / Gives me oxygen when it gets hard to breathe / And if I’m wrong or right / She’s always on my side,” in the songs, “Back to Life.”
“Icarus Interlude” introduces the album with the sound of a quiet electric guitar and lyrically Malik doesn’t disappoint. Listeners were surprised to hear Malik sample the haunting whistling vocals by Nancy Sinatra on “Good Guy.” “Flight of the Stars” tells a story of unconditional love and his strong vocals over a smooth beat makes for a good soft love story.
“Satisfaction” opens up with heavy thudding drums and Malik sings, “We gotta find out place / And we’ll go there now / I can’t get no satisfaction alone.” The alluring bass on “Sour Diesel” turns into an upbeat song, he sings, “She got it and she knows she got it / I’m takin off like a rocket.”
“Scripted” opens with church bell chimes and soon turns into a tune that would make a late night drive better. “There You Are” is a romantic ballad that could leave some daydreaming about love as Malik sings in the chorus, “There you are / There you are / You’re there with open arms.”
Malik makes a reference of Icarus in “I Don’t Mind” and sings, “I don’t mind falling / If it means I get to fly again / Up in my island / Like a dream I’m trying to fight against.”
The story of Icarus in Greek mythology tells of Icarus becoming excited by the thrill of flying and gets carried away with the feeling of freedom. His wings, created by his father, soon melted and Icarus fell into the sea and drowned.
Malik has been free of 1D for a few years now and still must be loving the freedom of creating the music he wants. Before the second album, Malik has been low key in public appearances, something he wasn’t able to do while being in a band. His sophomore album may have taken to a new heights after reading positive fan reviews and it’s only going up from here, unlike Icarus.
This second solo album is a breath of fresh air in a industry that can release redundant music. Malik’s bold and experimental sound was worth the two year wait and already has me excited for the third album.