Is Zayn Malik the next Justin Timberlake?

It's not the first time this question has been raised, despite the fact that Zayn has never even tried to be the dancer Justin is. Zayn's departure from One Direction is reminiscent of — if not identical to — Justin's choice to launch a solo career with Justified in 2002, which signaled the end of 'NSync's heyday. Back then, adults who thought they were above a wildly popular boy band initially dismissed Justin's foray into pop and R&B — until his talent and music proved them wrong.

Today (June 15), a UK rapper named MIC Righteous has shared audio purporting to feature Mr. Malik himself on a remix of Rae Sremmurds' "No Type." The surprising guest feature bodes very well for Zayn's future crossover success. You can listen to an all-Zayn fan edit above.

Rae Sremmurds' lyrics almost take on new meaning coming out of Zayn's mouth, given the constant flurry of media attention and judgment the singer has received since he quit his band earlier this year. It's easy to imagine some defiance underneath his languid delivery, "I make my own money so I spend it how I like / I'm just livin' life, let my momma tell me that I ain't livin' right."  It should also be noted that Zayn (wisely) chose to drop the n-word from that line.

MIC Righteous' original post has already been taken down, so listen to the fan edit above while you can — and let us know what you think.

See Zayn Malik and More Celebrities' School Photos