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Ed Sheeran Releases Two New Songs 'Shape Of You' & 'Castle on the Hill'

by Ryan Middleton   Jan 6, 2017 10:41 AM EST

Ed Sheeran performs at Mt Smart Stadium on December 12, 2015 in Auckland, New Zealand (Photo : Phil Walter/Getty Images)

Ed Sheeran has broken his silence in a big way with two brand new songs "Shape Of You" and "Castle on the Hill." Both are the first singles to emerge from his upcoming album that some speculate to be titled ÷ (Divide).

Ed Sheeran has been pretty much silent on social media and in the music world in 2016. He did a few interviews and made a few somewhat of public appearances that got headlines, but never released any new music.

Once the clock flipped to 2017, he teased new music would be coming on today, and throughout the week has been sharing small teasers of his new songs "Castle on the Hill" and "Shape of You."

Both of these songs, especially "Shape of You" deviates from the soft, acoustic sound that he wooed so many fans with on x.

"Shape of You" is a more overtly sexual song and clearly designed for the radio. It has a very danceable, dancehall-influenced underbelly with a simple synth melody. This one should be everywhere shortly and may be 2017's first big pop smash.

When he wrote the song with Steve Mac Johnny McDaid, Sheeran was considering giving it Rihanna, but instead decided to keep it after looking at a few choice lyrics and talking to the label.

"['Shape of You'] is actually a really random one because I went in to write songs for other people with a guy called Steve Mac and Johnny McDaid, and we were writing this song and I was like 'this would really work for Rihanna,'" he explained to BBC Radio 1. "And then I started singing lyrics like 'putting Van The Man on the jukebox' and I was like 'well she's not really going to sing that, is she?' And then we sort of decided halfway through that we were just going to make it for me."

"Castle on the Hill" is a bit more familiar for Sheeran fans, though it is still quite energetic. As Sheeran has grown into a pop superstar - something he has come to reluctantly embrace, the 25-year-old on "Castle on the Hill" returns to his roots and his friends and sings about his upbringing in Framlingham.

He tells stories of broken bones, found and lost love and the normal things that have happened to people in his small country town.

"Found my heart and broke it here / Made friends and lost them through the years / And I've not seen the roaring fields in so long, I know I've grown / But I can't wait to go home," Sheeran sings.

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