Better watch out Kayne, Drake and Jay, because you have some new hip-hop competition on your hands, and his name is Ed Sheeran.
Yes, Sheeran showed off his (pretty impressive) rapping skills on Tuesday at London’s Royal Albert Hall during his Teenage Cancer Trust show. While performing a brand-new track, “Take It Back Now,” presumably off his upcoming sophomore album, Ed rapped some verses.
He previously rhymed a little on “You Need Me, I Don’t Need You,” off his debut album, but clearly he’s been working on his technique since then. The British singer rapped at lightning speed at the London show, spitting out imaginative lyrics and delighting his fans.
Over an acoustic beat, Sheeran paints a picture of what his rise to fame has been like, claiming he “didn’t listen to any criticism,” and thanks his fans for “keeping him going through the tough times.” He also revealed some possible insecurities.
“I don’t ever want to be perfect because I’m the singer that you never want to see shirtless/ I accept the fact that someone has to win worst-dressed/ Taking my first steps into the scene, giving me focus/ Putting on a brave face like Timothy Dalton/ Considering a name change/ Thinking it was hopeless,” he raps as he references the famed “James Bond” actor.
While Sheerios may disagree with the shirtless line and remind him that he was named one of People’s Sexiest Men Alive, it seems Sheeran has been more concerned with staying grounded, between the Grammy nominations and super successful tours.
“I’m never having a stylist, giving me tight jeans/ Madison Square Garden is where I might be/ But more likely, you’ll find me in the back room of a dive bar with my mates/ Having a pint with McDaid/ Discussing records we made,” he raps, referencing friend and Snow Patrol member Johnny McDaid.
The “Give Me Love” singer has been keeping fans guessing on when he’ll officially drop new music, but some think it could be next month. Sheeran is slated to perform on “Saturday Night Live” on April 12 and he recently tweeted “7/4/14,” which translates to April 7, 2014, Stateside.