Gig review: Ed Sheeran Divide Tour Manchester

Sunday 23rd April, St George’s Day for the rest of England, but for me, it was about hunting for last minute Ed Sheeran tickets. After selling out on launch day in 10 minutes, I don’t know for the life of me how I managed to bag two tickets from eventim literally hours before the show was due to start!

I’ve never had the chance to see Ed perform live before and I was excited to see how one man and an acoustic guitar would entertain a 21,000 capacity arena, and my god, did he impress!

Unfortunately, we missed out on the opening act, Ryan McMullan, but we managed to catch Ciao Adios singer, Anne-Marie, who absolutely killed it.

I won’t describe the setlist in detail for those who have yet to see him on his Divide tour, but once that blackout happened, I’ve never heard a crowd like Sheeran’s. Seconds later, Castle on the Hill broke out and the whole of Manchester Arena was singing it back.

One highlight for me was the sheer intensity during Bloodstream – the way Ed controlled his loop station was overwhelming and I actually had goosebumps. If you haven’t heard the track live, I suggest you get it on YouTube NOW and you’ll understand what I mean. The same feeling came up again during the encore with You Need Me. Trust me, you’ll need to have a look to get where I’m coming from on that one.

Although Ed only took short breaks between tracks, his engagement with the crowd was amazing; congratulating a couple who got engaged during Thinking Out Loud and also encouraging everybody to get up and sing – ‘If you don’t know the words, make them up’.

Finishing the show with Shape of You and You Need Me, Ed Sheeran ended on ‘See you next year’ which means I’ll have to sort out my ticket-buying tactics.

I can honestly say that Ed Sheeran is up there on my top five gigs. One man, a guitar, and an incredible loop station really can make a huge impact on a crowd and I left with next to no voice and an incredible adrenaline rush.

A huge thanks to eventim for releasing those tickets, it made for a very happy younger brother who gave me the title of a ‘legend sister’.

Remember, ticket touts will always buy bulk tickets, so it’s becoming harder and harder to get tickets on launch day. I would highly advise to not give up and ALWAYS search on the day of the gig, as promoters will release any spares they have. I managed to get STANDING Green Day tickets on the day of the gig through this company- well worth trying!
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