And Finally Artist News Beef Of The Week Deals Releases

CMU Beef Of The Week #267: One Direction v Zayn Malik

By | Published on Friday 31 July 2015

One Direction

Well, it finally happened. The remaining four members of One Direction have written Zayn Malik out of their history. Zayn who? No idea, mate. What do you mean this sounds like something I just made up in order to fill a weekly column? How dare you! Now I will have to fill the rest of this article with evidence, and then you’ll all look rather silly.

It was all smiles in March when Malik left the group, of course. “I am leaving because I want to be a normal 22 year old who is able to relax and have some private time out of the spotlight”, he said back then. “I know I have four friends for life in Louis, Liam, Harry and Niall. I know they will continue to be the best band in the world”.

Just warms your heart, doesn’t it? Even now. Even now that we know it couldn’t last. Even now those “four friends for life” have become Zayn’s sworn enemies for eternity. Because that is what has happened, don’t forget.

So, having tired of having a 100% normal life, this week Malik announced that he had new management and a new record label, breaking free from the chains of Simon Cowell’s Syco and one time ‘X-Factor’ act management company Modest!.

Oh sure, he’s still signed to a Sony label and Cowell was apparently involved in getting him that record deal. But whatever, this is all pretty close to a clean break. And clean breaks mean cutting loose the ties that have been holding you back. So Zayn took the opportunity to announce that everything he’s done prior to this point – ie the entire 1D recorded repertoire, all their live performances and the big duvet cover deal – are an embarrassment that he hopes to forget.

Well, those weren’t his exact words. What he actually said was: “I guess I never explained why I left [One Direction]. It was for this moment to be given the opportunity to show you who I really am!”

But that’s not what he said in March, is it? In March it was all, “Soz, it’s all got a bit too much in this hot spotlight”. Now – as the Mystic Meg of pop, Louis Walsh, previously predicted – it turns out what Malik really felt was that he should be the only one taking all the heat of said spotlight. And just to drive the point home about everything that went before being rubbish, he added the hashtag “#realmusic” to his deal tweet, basically accusing his former band of being somehow fake, like he’s now Jake Bugg or something.

But a beef requires two sides, so let’s go and take a look at what’s been going on with the four men who are currently still collectively known as One Direction (until the end of the year).

“We’re really sad to see Zayn go, but we totally respect his decision and send him all our love for the future”, they said when Malik left the group. “The past five years have been beyond amazing, we’ve gone through so much together, so we will always be friends”.

And so, as they saw their former comrade go forth and pave the way for the imminent solo career future that awaits them all (well, at least two of them), what messages of support did they send? None. None at all. Not even one. They just acted like they hadn’t even noticed. They tweeted about other things, or, in Liam’s case, stayed so committed to ignoring Zayn that he tweeted nothing at all between Monday and this morning.

Oh, but he tweeted something today though, did he? Yes he did. Thank you for spotting that and giving me a segue into the next stage of this beef. Because this is where it gets really crafty, you see. As if to really drive the point home that they don’t even remember who this ‘Zayn Malik’ character is, One Direction released their first single without his silly voice bringing down the vocals as a big surprise for fans this very morning. Because that’s how exciting New Music Fridays can be.

Even better, the title of the track is quite clearly a message to the man they’re pretending not to remember. ‘Drag Me Down’ is the title. Because, like, they’re saying that Zayn was dragging them down, and now with this song they’re showing off how they can reach their true potential without him. I mean, lyrically that’s not even close to what it’s saying, but that’s what makes it so clever. So subtle.

And so, I think that, without question, this all proves the bitter rift between Zayn Malik and the remaining members of One Direction. Oh sure, you might point out that Liam’s lack of tweeting this week means that a tweet from last week marking the fifth anniversary of the group is still near the top. And yes, sure, he thanks Zayn along with everyone else in that tweet. But let me ask you this: who is the only one whose name he doesn’t give a capital letter?

Now, who wants me to explain how the 50/50 split between 1D members over whether to link to Spotify or iTunes while announcing that new single this morning shows who will be the next two group members to quit?