Ed Sheeran | ÷ | 2017 | 1 hour 5 minutes (extended edition) | Atlantic
Five years ago, the world met a scruffy ginger with a small guitar and a loop pedal who sang about getting drunk and couch surfing.
Today, we have Ed Sheeran, multiplatinum pop star. The scruffy ginger still sings about getting drunk and living like a vagabond, but now he has more money and fewer troubles.
Ed Sheeran has two types of songs: songs for sad girls to eat ice cream to, and wild songs.
This review only covers the upbeat songs, because quite honestly… I don’t like the sad girl songs.
The upbeat songs on Divide, Ed’s third studio album named after math, are quite jubilant. Even the album covers are cooling off.
Ed still has a mean streak (“I think money is the root of all evil and fame is hell”, he sings on “Eraser”), but financial stability suits Ed better than he might care to admit. Despite its title, Divide aims to unify.
Ed jives with world music: Latin on “Barcelona” and mbaqanga on “Bibia Be Ye Ye” (think Graceland). Ed flaunts his Irish roots on Galway Girl and Nancy Mulligan. The latter tells Ed’s grandparents’ love story. In case you forgot, Irish music is fun. We have fun Irish songs just in time for St. Pat’s!
No doubt studio pressure grows with every Grammy nomination, but Ed stays pretty grounded. I still relate more to drinking champagne out of cider cans than playing to sold out crowds, but hey. Write what you know. Here’s to hoping Ed never forgets his roots.
- Shape of You
- Galway Girl
- New Man
- Bibia Be Ye Ye
- Nancy Mulligan
Ed loves the road more than any normal pop star, so he’ll be trotting the globe from now till next year. Check here for tour dates. US dates not yet scheduled.
Spotify stream here:
And here’s a shot of Ed eating BBQ from EW’s Three Rounds (of meat) interview.