Zayn Malik Makes His Return to Music With Cover of Jimi Hendrix's "Angel"

How's this for some night changes?

Zayn Malik is back with new music in honor of what would have been Jimi Hendrix's 80th birthday on Nov. 27.

On Nov. 25, the One Direction alum dropped his version of the guitarist's 1971 song "Angel," which originally debuted on his posthumous album The Cry of Love.

Zayn debuted his take on the song starting from the opening line, "Angel came down from heaven."

It appears to be approved by the late icon's team, as Jimi's Instagram page posted a teaser of the song earlier in the week. A spokesperson for Experience Hendrix, L.L.C. told Billboard, "We are pleased that Zayn has been inspired to use original music from Jimi Hendrix's 'Angel' in his recording of the song. We're hopeful that this version of a Hendrix classic will enlighten a new generation of listeners about Jimi's genius and further propel his continuing legacy."

Zayn Malik's Hair Transformations

Getting to pay tribute to Jimi through this cover is something Zayn will never forget. "Being asked to collaborate to celebrate @jimihendrix 80th birthday was such an unexpected and huge honour," he wrote on Instagram. "I have so much respect and admiration for Jimi, his music and fans. 'Angel' is out now - hope you love the track as much as I do. Happy 80th Jimi."

Zayn Malik
Allen Berezovsky/FilmMagic

Jimi tragically died in 1970 at age 27 after he aspirated his own vomit, per a coroner's report. It stated that he died of asphyxia while intoxicated with barbiturates.

More than 50 years later, the new "Angel" marks a rare music release from Zayn, 29, following his 2021 album Nobody Is Listening. He also recently collaborated with Yung Bleu on the number "Fire Inside."

Otherwise, he's been focusing on activism—campaigning for expanded free school meals in the U.K.—and co-parenting his 2-year-old daughter Khai with Gigi Hadid. (Back in September, she gave him a shoutout following their daughter's Peppa Pig birthday party.)

But he couldn't stay away from music for long: Listen to his version of "Angel" here.