Divide review

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Written by: Asha McCarty

Three years ago, Ed Sheeran’s chart-topping album “x” released. “X”, or often called “Multiply,” was the last taste of new music that was released to the public, excluding an EP (“5”) with remastered published tracks Sheeran released in May 2015.

Sheeran went silent on all social media for exactly a year, but on Dec. 12, he tweeted a teaser for a new album. Since his following tweets further revealing an upcoming album, fans have been in a state of frenzy and have been highly anticipating the new album.

The official album release is scheduled to be March 3.

On Jan. 6, two singles were released. “Castle on the Hill” and “Shape of You” have been heavily streamed and blared from fans across the globe. “Castle on the Hill” revives Sheeran’s signature, sad-like guitar looping. Accompanied with marimba and a hypnotic beat, the single bares his soul, as per usual. “Take my hand, stop / Put Van The Man on the jukebox / And then we start to dance.” Sheeran has a reputation for having deeply personal, heart-tugging music, and “Castle on the Hill” certainly upholds the statement. Sheeran’s country essence in his guitar and emotional lyrics really hit home to me; it almost made me want to call everyone I care about and just have a talk with them. It makes you miss someone you didn’t know you missed.

“Shape of You,” on the other hand, shows Sheeran’s other side entirely. As a mature songwriter, Sheeran has yet again proved he’s not all about sad romance songs. “Shape of You”, revitalised the familiar dance tune that Sheeran incorporated into his radio singles, and fans are absolutely loving it. Rather than wanting to party and be sad, this single’s cool vibes and smooth lyrics takes the listener elsewhere for a different, more charming story of ‘boy meets girl’ scenario. The electronic beats incorporated with Sheeran’s acoustic guitar gives the single a sincere rawness alongside his desire. Sheeran appreciates a body without using crude and objectifying language, and to me, that is by far the strongest element of the song.

Sheeran shared the tracklist on Instagram on Jan. 11. The tracklist is as followed:

 

  1. “Eraser”
  2. “Castle On The Hill”
  3. “Dive”
  4. “Shape Of You”
  5. “Perfect”
  6. “Galway Girl”
  7. “Happier”
  8. “Hearts Don’t Break Around Here”
  9. “New Man”
  10. “What Do I Know?”
  11. “How Would You Feel (Paean)”
  12. “Supermarket Flower”

A world tour for the album will begin on March 17, in Turin, Italy.

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