Love always means trouble for former One Direction singer Zayn Malik. On his solo debut single, “Pillowtalk,” romance was both “a paradise and a war zone” – and his latest collaboration with electronic duo Snakehips picks up from there. On the new song “Cruel,” Zayn sings in a plaintive neon light: “I’ve been by myself remembering you/ Your body hurts me.”
In the new clip for “Cruel,” the object of Zayn’s affections is mostly absent. The camera is in perpetual motion, zooming towards Malik who stares into the middle distance in a series of dimly-lit rooms. A few dancers flit in and out of the misty frames, but Zayn remains alone.
Snakehips have nabbed a series of big-name vocalists for their recent singles. Last year the duo released “All My Friends,” which featured Chance the Rapper and Tinashe. In the spring, Snakeships returned with “Money on Me,” which contained vocals from Anderson .Paak. Both those tracks subsequently appeared on the All My Friends EP.