Out of nowhere, while we were sleeping, One Direction have returned.


Late last night (or early morning UK time), the foursome debuted a new song called "Drag Me Down," their first official release since Zayn Malik's departure to make #realmusic with RCA Records. (And the first song since Louis Tomlinson's rumored-but-basically-confirmed dad-dom.)

"All my life, you stood by me when no one else was ever behind me / All these lights, they can't blind me / With your love, nobody can drag me down," the boys sing on the slightly Caribbean-infused new cut, crafted by frequent 1D collaborators Jamie Scott, John Ryan and Julian Bunetta. There are some definite elements of Maroon 5 and Bruno Mars' "Locked Out Of Heaven" (so really, Sting & The Police) in the song's DNA — a likely sign of end-of-summer radio domination.

"We can't wait for you to hear our new single 'Drag Me Down,' so we decided to release it early. We are so thankful for all the support we've had, so we decided to release the song for all of our fans," Niall explains in a mini-video announcement on Twitter.

"It's the first song from the new album that we've been working very, very hard on. We can't wait for you to hear it," Liam said in a follow-up video.

Given Zayn's solo announcement earlier this week, can't help but wonder whether this is a not-so-subtle attempt at snatching the spotlight back to the band that made him famous in the first place. But did it work?

Are you freaking the F out? Do you like the new sound? Do the boys still got it without Zayn? Sound off in the comments below.

One Direction Through The Years