Ed Sheeran has opened up about plans for his next album, revealing that it won't be a pop record similar to his recent efforts.
Speaking on the first episode of George Ezra's new podcast George Ezra and Friends, Ed explained that he wants to manage the expectations of fans and his record label on his next project.
"The next record that I’m making is not a pop album. I feel like it’s dangerous to have a career that goes bigger and bigger, because at some point it’s gonna drop. If the next album does, like, 2 or 1 [million], or 500,000, it’s not a failure because I’ve made an album where I’m not trying to get there. No one’s going to be like, ‘that’s a flop’."
"The label hate that. The label really f***ing hate that. They want a big pop album again but I think that s**t’s dangerous."
The record-breaking success of Ed's Number 1 single Shape of You is one of the reasons why his next album will be a change in direction for him. Trying to compete with a 14-week Official Singles Chart Number 1 hit and the most streamed song of all time would be a pretty big challenge. Look back at his complete Official Chart history here.
"The reason it’s not a pop album is people expect you to come and the next album they’re going to be like ‘it has to be bigger than ‘Shape of You’ and it has to sell more than this’, but if I control it and go ‘here’s a lo-fi record that I really f**ing love,’ my fans are gonna be like ‘Yay!’, and the pop world are gonna be like ‘oh well, maybe the next one.’"
This is not the first time Ed has shared details of his yet-titled fourth studio album. Ed confirmed to The Sun last year that he has been working on this next record since 2010, way back when he was also writing his debut LP.
"I’ve been working on this one since the same time as +. Every year I write a song that will go on it. So I have about six, seven at the moment. I don’t think there’ll be any hot radio songs on it this time. It’s a very acoustic record."
Should Ed have a change of heart and want to better the success of his third album ÷, he'll have a tough time on his hands. The album is the fastest-selling ever by a male artist, features more Top 10 singles on it than any other studio album in UK chart history, had all 16 of its tracks chart concurrently in the Official Singles Chart Top 20, and achieved 20 non-consecutive weeks at Number 1.