No teases. No promotion. Nothing. There was no suspense building or a countdown to a new single...well played, guys.
Let's just say fans were very receptive to the surprise single - and fell instantly in love with "Drag Me Down," the first song on their new album without Zayn Malik. And speaking of Zayn and timing - the new song comes just a day after Zayn announced he's signed on with RCA to start his solo career.
What do you think of their sound on "Drag Me Down" - a bit more mature, as promised...and Harry Styles taking on the high notes? Sigh.
Liam Payne tweeted: "Bit of a surprise ! Check out our new single! It's called Drag Me Down & I hope you love it as much as we do."
Niall Horan took to Twitter to write: "Finally we get to say this ! have waited a long time but our new single Drag Me Down is out."