London, June 15 : Singer Zayn Malik, who quit One Direction early last year, says he “knew it was his time” to depart the chart-topping boy band. The “Pillowtalk” hitmaker felt it was the right decision and now feels “free at last”, reports  “I just knew it was my time. I knew I wanted to do something different and start expressing the way I felt about certain things,” Malik told Dazed magazine.  (Read: Zayn Malik wants to ‘prove’ he’s good enough for Gigi Hadid) Also Read - Zayn Malik And Gigi Hadid Become Parents to Baby Girl

“I know that musicians are seen as one-sided people a lot of the time. But we do have other elements to us as well. I didn’t feel good. Do you know what I mean? And if you don’t feel good… You need to be able to express what it is that you are. I’m free at last,” he added. Also Read - Zayn Malik's 'Enna Sona' Tweet Once Again Proves His Fascination For Bollywood

The 23-year-old singer was a little nervous about how his young fans would react to his new music and expected them to “freak out”. Also Read - Zayn Malik Sings New Cover Version of Iconic Song 'A Whole New World' For Aladdin And Fans Can't Keep Calm

“I didn’t know what to expect. I wanted to make that statement, that this was something completely separate from whatever was out there before. I kind of expected the fans that followed me before to be a bit freaked out by it,” Malik said.

“It was nerve-wracking for me but it worked out for the best, because people started listening to it in a more mature context,” he added.