Review: Divide by Ed Sheeran (minus the fun)

A (not very flattering) review of Ed Sheeran's new album ÷ (Divide). Sadly, a boring follow up to X

It is no secret the 25-year-old Suffolk boy Ed Sheeran has been making waves in the music industry since his debut album + (2011) hit the shelves, launching his studio career and worldwide fame.

I have to admit, I loved his first album, with tracks such as A-Team, Lego House and Small Bump, it was hard to not find it incredibly catchy. What’s more impressive is the way Sheeran composes his music (especially live) with a plethora of loops and beatboxing as well as his guitar skills.

The 2014 follow up didn’t strike a chord with me, even though it was a popular album (so much so it reached multi-platinum status) I just couldn’t get on with it. It was different, which isn’t always a bad thing, but it just didn’t feel as raw or honest as his first album.

Then comes his latest CD ÷ (he really has a thing for mathematics it seems). With his first two singles Castle on the Hill and Shape of You already smashing the stream count, breaking Spotify history with 7,940,950 in one day, and pretty much taking over the Top 50 singles on the popular music streaming service, it seems 2017 may be the year of the Sheeran.

Sadly, this is not something I am convinced by. I am quick to say that he is talented and he knows how to get a crowd going, everyone seems to love him (including my mum). It is deeply unfashionable to bitch and moan about the acoustic popstar, but I just can’t seem to enjoy his new album at all.

I picked up a copy of the deluxe edition of ÷, with an extra four tracks…unfortunately they didn’t even manage to sway me.

The album seems to draw a lot of inspiration from Sheeran’s younger life, like with a lot of musicians, but he seems to forcefully remind people he never went to university, had a tough time going through a break up, went on family holidays and doesn’t like your current boyfriend.

To me, the album seems a bit teenage-angsty so for a 25-year-old to be singing about these things just seems a bit….old hat.

For example, the song New Man which sits awkwardly as the eighth song on the album, sings:

Ain’t nobody hurt like you like I hurt you,

But ain’t nobody love you like I do

Promise that I will not take it personal baby

If you’re moving on with someone new.”

If I can say anything more about the album it would be that it will please the majority of Ed’s fans who have been consistent enough to enjoy the past two albums, but I just find it incredibly dull.

It isn’t even that it isn’t put together well, because it is, but I just really can’t make myself sit through the same song two or three times in an attempt to make it catch in my head. But this is just my opinion, and with Ed headlining Glasto on the Sunday this year, and the album pretty much falling off the shelves and into the hands of millions around the world, who am I to say he is shite?

NME and Rolling Stone have given ÷ rave reviews, as have a number of different music critics, whilst this may be sort of understandable, I am not going to follow suit.

He is obviously doing something right, but I just can’t seem to spot it.

Track variation
Copies sold
Discussion feed

Up next in music