Editors’ Notes British tunesmith Ed Sheeran finally drops his debut album, + (pronounced “plus”). He jumps right into his lead single, “The A Team,” a catchy and melancholy narrative about a junkie prostitute on a downward spiral. Sheeran soulfully coos her sad story over minimal piano parts, ambient electric six-string effects, and muted acoustic guitar rhythms. He cleverly imports hip-hop beats and handclaps into the following “Drunk” before balancing smoothly sung verses with choruses rapidly phrased to match the rhythm track. In “Wake Me Up,” his lyrics take on a rhetorically conversational approach, earning the adoration of his muse with pop culture references and witty confessionals; it's sung like a handwritten letter signed and sealed over spare piano notes. There's live beatbox accompaniment in the pitter-patter backdrop of the harmonious “Small Bump” and the Justin Timberlake–inspired “You Need Me, I Don't Need You” (which boasts more a cappella rhythm tracks than a Bobby McFerrin album).

SONG
The a Team
1
4:18
 
Drunk
2
3:20
 
U.N.I.
3
3:48
 
Grade 8
4
2:59
 
Wake Me Up
5
3:49
 
Small Bump
6
4:19
 
This
7
3:15
 
The City
8
3:54
 
Lego House
9
3:05
 
You Need Me, I Don't Need You
10
3:40
 
Kiss Me
11
4:40
 
Give Me Love
12
8:46
 

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