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Monday, November 1, 2021 2:00pm ET by  
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Ed Sheeran’s New Album ‘=’ On Course to Be U.K. No. 1

Ed Sheeran’s = is on course to be Number 1 in the U.K. on this week’s Official Albums Chart, with impressive numbers at the halfway stage of the chart week.

The multiple-Grammy Award winning superstar released his long-awaited 4th studio album last Friday on October 29. Check it out now here.

Already shifting 84,000 chart sales across the weekend, Sheeran's album is so far outperforming the rest of the Top 40 combined. Comfortably leading the charge on all fronts – physical sales, downloads and streams - at its current pace, = could overtake Coldplay’s Music of the Spheres to claim the biggest opening week of 2021 so far (101,000 chart sales).

The acclaimed British singer-songwriter and musician previously scored Number 1 on the Official Albums Chart with all three of his studio albums; + (2011), x (2014), ÷ (2017), as well as his No 6 Collaborations Project (2019).  

Elsewhere this week, a further eight new releases could land inside the Top 10. Behind Sheeran is former Verve frontman Richard Ashcroft with Acoustic Hymns - Vol. 1 at Number 2, while the 25th anniversary re-release of Spice Girls’ iconic debut album Spice could be on track to return to the UK Top 10 at Number 3. It previously topped the Official Albums Chart for 15 weeks. 

At Number 5 are The War on Drugs with I Don’t Live Here Anymore, while US blues-rock guitarist Joe Bonamassa could gain his sixth UK Top 10 with Time Clocks at Number 6. Heavy metal band Mastodon are looking for a new entry at Number 8 with Hushed and Grim, while a remixed and updated version of Pink Floyd’s A Momentary Relapse of Reason is at Number 9. Motorhead’s greatest hits collection, Everything Louder Forever, could earn the band their fifth UK Top 10 album at Number 10. 

To celebrate the release of =, Sheeran is set to return this week to the famed Saturday Night Live stage on November 6, marking his 3rd time serving as musical guest for the legendary show. Sheeran will be performing his hit singles “Bad Habits” and “Shivers,” both of which are simultaneously sitting in the top 10 of Billboard’s Hot 100 chart.

The tracks were also featured in his recent NPR “Tiny Desk Concert,” streaming online now (watch below).

Today on November 1, Sheeran also wraps up a three-night stand as this season’s Mega-Mentor on The Voice.

Listen/stream = and check out more awesome Ed Sheeran music here

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