Wednesday, 3 August 2011

Real Music: Ed Sheeran

Ed Sheeran, it seems, is 'the next big thing'. And well done to him for this, because to earn that status he's plugged away incessantly from the age of about 5 (or something), and that's somewhat laudable. On the other hand he needs a slap, because his new single is possibly the worst piece of sanctimonious drivel put to record this year. 'You Need Me, I Don't Need You' is its name, and the arrogance of that title perfectly encapsulates the level of sheer wankery in the lyrics. Nearly every word Sheeran raps is dedicated to attempting to reinforce a pathetic notion of 'authenticity' with a level of desperation that suggests a man that's not only rather too eager to make some kind of point but one that also knows he's unlikely to be believed.

See, I’m true, my songs are where my heart is
I’m like glue, I stick to other artists

Those are some groundbreaking metaphors and similes for you right there. Although if Ed really craves respect, at least by "sticking to other artists" he's going the right way about it. Right, Geri?

See, I’m real, I do it all, it’s all me
I’m not fake, don’t ever call me lazy

It would obviously be unfair to call someone who has gigged relentlessly over the past few years lazy, but still, piss off.

I sing and write my own tune
And write my own verse, Hell
Don't need another wordsmith to make my tune sell
Call yourself a singer-writer, you’re just bluffing
Your name’s on the credits and you didn’t write nothing
I sing fast, I know that all my shit’s cool
I will blast and I didn’t go to Brit School

So you write your own songs? Well we've established that, but it doesn't stop this one being shit. ('Props' for acknowledging that it is shit though.) And if 'not going to Brit School' is now a way of proving your supposed worthiness, then 99% of the world are Bob Dylan.

And I won’t be a product of my genre
My mind will always be stronger than my songs are
Never believe the bullshit that fake guys feed to ya
Always read the stories that you hear on Wikipedia

For such a fantastic lyricist, this bit (and it's not the only bit) makes very little sense. How can someone be a product of their genre? What does that mean? If the 'fake guys'' stories are at least a bit more coherent than Ed's then they're going to be a lot easier to believe, to be honest. And since when did Wikipedia have stories on it? Especially ones that you can both read and hear. The bit about the songs not being very strong is refreshingly honest, though.

‘A young singer-writer like a Gabriella Cilmi’

I’ve done around about a thousand shows
But I haven’t got a house plus I live on the couch

Have you mentioned this before Ed? Because that sounds familiar. Not sure that the fact that you haven't got a house and you live on a couch is particularly relevant to the previous line (perhaps he's stocking up on indie points), but let's not let something like that mar an absolutely appalling song.

Plus I keep my last name forever keep the genre pretty basic
Gonna be breaking into other people’s tunes when I chase it
And replace it with the elephant in the room with a facelift
Into another rapper's shoes using new laces

Presumably not understanding this bit makes you a philistine, because it's so deep, man. (Or it could just be nonsense.)

According to the MySpace and YouTube videos

When Cher Lloyd talked about people 'tweeting' and 'YouTubing' her it was cringeworthy, but at least those lyrics were probably taken from some committee's flipchart, attempting to play to her intended audience. When you do it you just sound like an idiot, especially if you wrote it yourself.

I’m always doing shows, if I’m not I’m in the studio

Alright, we believe you Ed!

These, of course, are only an editorialised selection of the lyrics. There is plenty more self-aggrandising (yet still unremittingly self-conscious), illogical, badly written nonsense elsewhere in the song, too.

In summary, Ed Sheeran: a grade A tosspot, though probably lovely in real life. He goes here.

Here is the video. It was probably made on a budget of 50p and bag of twigs, it's just so darn Real.

 (Actually this might all be a bit harsh, and he is quite talented too. Oh well.)

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