Arts, Music

Sheeran’s ‘Divide’ Stuns Listeners with Heartfelt Storytelling

Already the No. 1 album on the iTunes store, Divide is taking the world by storm. In his latest album, Ed Sheeran displays his talent through his writing and musicianship within each song on the album. Exploring different techniques and some rapping, the singer puts a new spin on the style so many fans adore. Using an interesting mix of fast, slow, playful, serious, and heartfelt beats, he narrows in on the perfect tone to communicate his stories.

Beginning with “Eraser,” Sheeran sets a cool, effortless tone with his rapping and matter-of-fact lyrics. He raps about everything from his experience with religion in the past to his current relationship with fame and how he has been managing it. Fans will love to hear a further insight into the life of the singer and how he grapples with success and struggle.

Following the song of personal discovery is Sheeran’s nostalgic take on his home and the people that shaped him. “Castle on the Hill” has been out for quite a while, but still holds a special place in the hearts of fans. As the singer is departing for home he recounts the tales this place held for him and the impact the place and the people had on his life. “These people raised me and I can’t wait to go home.”  

The album takes a jaunty “Dive” as it embraces slow drums and electric guitar. Articulating Sheeran’s love for someone special, he wants to be sure that he will have a future with the person before diving in right away. He displays a hesitation because he knows once things start down this road, he will always have these feelings.

“Shape of You” is another hit that came before the album’s release. Sitting at No. 1 on iTunes charts, the song has left an impression on listeners. Featuring a fast-paced beat with an electric feel, it is no surprise how the single has resonated with so many. Its simple fusion of dance house and tropical music surely lends to its success.

Originally an older Irish tune, “Galway Girl” is one of Sheeran’s best on the album. The singer-songwriter decided to spice it up a bit adding his own flair, diverting from the older, slower interpretation, unique lyrics, and excitement to the classic. The song already has quite a following and the track has even brought on a stream of memes since its release.

Opening with a slow guitar and somber voice, “Happier” takes the album on a much more serious tone. Seeing a lost love with another, Sheeran grapples with the idea of her life and happiness without him, creating one of the most touching pieces on the album. He sings, “Cause baby you look happier, you do/My friends told me one day I’ll feel it too.”

“What Do I Know?” reflects on the voice and influence of the singer. While other people are focused on exponential growth and the stock market, he focuses on filling the world with what he knows. “Love can change the world in a moment / But what do I know?” This pensive track shows Sheeran’s attempts to grasp at larger ideas pertaining to love.

Holding the second to last spot album, “Nancy Mulligan” picks the pace back up. Sheeran tells the love story of his grandparents and the challenges they faced when they wanted to be together. The love story has a timeless element that will resonate with listeners of all ages. This kind of interjection with personal elements is a common theme throughout much of Sheeran’s music and allows for him to connect with fans more than through the superficial enjoyment of his sound, but with tales from his own life.

Every song he plays has its own individual story and could stand alone as a single apart from the album. He displays a fearlessness in his storytelling and it comes across to the audience. His rapping sets him apart by giving his words a certain directness and vulnerability. Just as powerful are his longing notes in “Dive” as he pleads, “Don’t call me baby unless you mean it.” Sheeran is a master lyricist and vocalist, and his latest album puts his talent and creativity on display.

Featured Image By Asylum Records

March 15, 2017