Never an artist to stand still, Ed recorded X
at various locations around the globe (all the while drawing on experiences and influences encountered on his over three years of unrelenting touring) with such luminary producers as Rick Rubin (Eminem, Jay-Z, Red Hot Chilli Peppers), Pharrell Williams (Daft Punk, Robin Thicke, N.E.R.D), Benny Blanco (Rhianna, Wiz Khalifa) and Jeff Bhasker (Alicia Keys, Jay-Z) adding new flavours to the classy work of key collaborators Johnny McDaid (Snow Patrol) and Jake Gosling (who produced +
The new set showcases the exponential growth (both vocally and musically) of an incredible artist, who at 23 exhibits the poise of a seasoned veteran. The songs for x
came together whilst touring +
and, in the same way as the latter was a snapshot of his life and relationship to-date, x
charts his loves and life since. Only "One", the perfect album opener and first song written for the record (in 2011 whilst on tour in Australia) looks back to that time and is the link between the two records. With "One" under his belt, almost before he noticed he was writing, Ed had ten new songs and counting.
The album-closer "Afire Love" was written about his grandfather who passed away last Christmas. “Always the hero of the family - such a cool guy - he'd been suffering with Alzheimer’s for some time and I actually started writing that song two weeks before he passed away," Ed says. "I was thinking 'What if?' and then he did…” Then there is the timeless ballad "Photograph" written in May 2012 in a hotel room in Kansas whilst on tour with Snow Patrol. McDaid had a piano loop playing on his laptop while Ed was making a Lego X-wing Fighter to give to a charity auction. He just started singing as he put the pieces together and the song grew from there. "Don’t" started life as a riff on his phone and grew into another of x
’s massive moments.
However it’s the Pharrell-produced lead single "Sing", that pushed the envelope for Ed. #Sing was the number one trend on twitter globally ahead of launch with the track immediately tearing up airwaves nationwide.
“I’m really proud of my new album and can’t wait for people to hear it.” Ed says.