Ed Sheeran has announced his new album "-", pronounced "Subtract", will be released on 5th May 2023, and it looks like it's gonna be his darkest one yet.
Ed shared that the album contains his "deepest darkest thoughts" after finding out his wife Cherry Seaborn had a tumour while pregnant with their second child.
The pop star has just unveiled his LP 'Subtract', the final in his decade-long mathematical series - which follows 2021's 'Equals', 2017's 'Divide', 2014's 'Multiply' and 2011's 'Plus' - accompanied by his diary entry from February 2022, in which he wrote about his spouse having to delay getting treatment for a tumour because she was pregnant with the couple's daughter, Jupiter, who they secretly welcomed into the world in May 2022.
The 'Bad Habits' hitmaker - who also has Lyra Antarctica, two, with childhood sweetheart Cherry - admitted writing the record acted as therapy for him through the extremely dark period in his life, which also saw his late friend Jamal Edwards pass away suddenly and his mental health spiral.
Ed also found himself having to fight for his "integrity and career as a songwriter" at court during a lengthy copyright trial over 'Shape of You'.
In the candid statement, he said:
I had been working on Subtract for a decade, trying to sculpt the perfect acoustic album, writing and recording hundreds of songs with a clear vision of what I thought it should be. Then at the start of 2022, a series of events changed my life, my mental health, and ultimately the way I viewed music and art.
"Writing songs is my therapy. It helps me make sense of my feelings. I wrote without thought of what the songs would be, I just wrote whatever tumbled out. And in just over a week, I replaced a decade’s worth of work with my deepest darkest thoughts.
"Within the space of a month, my pregnant wife got told she had a tumour, with no route to treatment until after the birth. My best friend Jamal, a brother to me, died suddenly and I found myself standing in court defending my integrity and career as a songwriter. I was spiralling through fear, depression and anxiety.
"I felt like I was drowning, head below the surface, looking up but not being able to break through for air."
The 'Thinking Out Loud' hitmaker, 32, says the album is him "opening the trapdoor into my soul" and he warned fans that they might not "like" what they hear.
He continued: "As an artist I didn’t feel like I could credibly put a body of work into the world that didn’t accurately represent where I am and how I need to express myself at this point in my life. This album is purely that. It’s opening the trapdoor into my soul. For the first time I’m not trying to craft an album people will like, I’m merely putting something out that’s honest and true to where I am in my adult life."
Ed concluded: "This is last February’s diary entry and my way of making sense of it. This is Subtract.”
The father-of-two also shared a moving video of himself walking along the beach as the song titles were shown written in the sand. At one point, he's seen climbing an unsteady ladder that falls apart on him.
'Subtract' is released on May 5.
The track-listing is:
2. 'Salt Water'
3. 'Eyes Closed'
4. 'Life Goes On'
6. 'End Of Youth'
13. 'No Strings'
14. 'The Hills of Aberfeldy'