Former One Direction member Zayn Malik has revealed his torment before leaving the chart-topping British boy band.
In an interview with New Zealand-born DJ Zane Lowe on Apple Music's Beats 1, Malik said he never wanted to be part of One Direction.
The 23-year-old's first interview since quitting in March comes ahead of the release of his first solo single Pillowtalk on Friday.
"I always kind of wanted to go from like the first year, really," Malik said.
"I never really wanted to be in the band. I just gave it a go because it was there at the time. When I realised the direction we were going in with the music, I instantly realised it wasn't for me.
"I couldn't give my opinion on this or that because it didn't fit the grain of what we were as a band and what we represented.
"That's when it became frustrating for me. That's when I had to be like, 'I've got to start thinking about something for myself'."
Several months after Malik's departure the band's remaining four members announced they were going on a year-long "hiatus" to focus on their solo careers.
Malik said he wrote songs while he was still a part of One Direction, many of which are expected to appear on his debut album Mind of Mine when it is released in March.
"I was always just writing anyway, even when I was in the band. It wasn't something that I had to think about and process that information. Just always knew.
The singer predicts there will be "17 to 18 songs" on the album, which is being made with Frank Ocean producer Malay.
"I'm feel excited, I'm feeling nervous, I'm feeling happy," he said.