3 Things You Should Know About Ed Sheeran’s New Album “Subtract”

Ed Sheeran performs at the 2017 Glastonbury Festival
Ed Sheeran performs at the 2017 Glastonbury Festival. Photo by James Gourley/REX/Shutterstock (8879513ej)

Ed Sheeran just announced the release of his upcoming fifth studio album Subtract and shared a deeply personal story that inspired it. This album is coming our way later this spring and here are three things you should know ahead of its release.

Personal Story

Sheeran teased his new album via a lengthy diary entry on social media, where he described the string of harrowing events that inspired this record:

“Within the space of a month, my pregnant wife got told she had a tumor, 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.”

Sheeran went on to explain that he spiraled through fear, depression, and anxiety after everything that happened and that these experiences changed his life, mental health, and the way he viewed music and art.


The tracklist of the standard edition of Subtract will include a total of 14 songs, including “Boat”, “Salt Water”, “Life Goes On”, “End of Youth” and “The Hills of Aberfeldy”. Sheeran also teased a deluxe CD edition with four more tracks and a vinyl edition with a total of nine additional tracks, including four from the CD edition.

The End of an Era?

Subtract (styled as “-“) will hit the shelves on May 5, and Sheeran will perform several concerts across Europe before heading to North America in May. It’s expected this album will conclude Sheeran’s “mathematical” series, which launched in 2011 with the album Plus (+), but the singer is yet to officially confirm these speculations.