CRADLE OF FILTH's collaboration with Ed Sheeran appears to finally be taking shape.
Earlier today, CRADLE OF FILTH frontman Dani Filth shared a photo of him having a meal with Sheeran and producer Scott Atkins, and he included the following caption: "A little over a week ago I was having lunch with the unlikely lads, having just done something fun."
This past August, Dani told Knotfest that the collaboration with Sheeran hadn't yet been completed. "[Ed's] done some of it, but then he had a baby, and then he got obviously sidetracked with that and doing whatever Ed does, which is play massive shows around the globe," Dani said. "He's not at our beck and call. But he is gonna finish it, he assures me. Actually, I spoke to him quite recently."
As for when CRADLE OF FILTH's collaboration with Sheeran might see the light of day, Dani said: "[It will be released] when it's finished. We don't know when it's coming out."
Filth originally broke the news about potentially working with the 31-year-old singer/songwriter, who is one of the most successful musicians on the planet, during an interview with Kerrang! Radio"Breakfast Show" at last year's Bloodstock Open Air festival in the U.K. At the time, Dani said: "I've actually been e-mailing with [Ed]… He actually touched base with me. I've been invited up to his place. Well, he said he could come down to mine, but I pointed out to him that I don't own my own bar or village, and it'd be better if I went there.
"He said he'd do anything," he added. "Quite literally. He said he's a massive fan. He seems like a genuinely very nice guy actually."
Filth went on to say the prospect of collaborating with someone like Sheeran is not as far fetched as one might think. "We've always been like that," he explained. 'If someone tells us not to do something, then we'll do it. That's been our prerogative the whole time. I did this rap song with this band called TWIZTID in America. It's actually turned out more like RAMMSTEIN and BEASTIE BOYS than full-on rap. So, in that respect, I think it the Ed Sheeran collaboration would be great fun. I think it'd be great if we did it for charity, because at least it would bring a bit of credibility to it. Because obviously to his public, it'd be, like, Oh my god, he's got this weird comical guy,' and to my public it'd be, like, 'Oh my god, this is a bit weird, isn't it? But I think that sort of thing nowadays works."
In July 2021, Sheeran floated the possibility of exploring a more extreme musical path while speaking to The Sun. He said: "I was really into death metal as a kid. I listened to CRADLE OF FILTH and SLIPKNOT and all that stuff. I'm not saying I could ever step into that world. I learnt all those riffs on guitar as a kid. That's something I've never thought about doing — but something I would not be opposed to creating."
Sheeran had previously dabbled in a variety of genres, including rock, dance, rap and reggae.
After The Sun published Sheeran's comments, Filth posted a screenshot of an article headlined "Ed Sheeran is open to recording a death metal album after spending his youth listening to CRADLE OF FILTH" and wrote in an accompanying caption, "I'll believe it when I see it. Fellow Suffolk lad could come good in the end. 'Dracula's Castle On The Hill' anyone?"
Sheeran previously admitted to his love of SLIPKNOT in a 2017 interview with Gist. Speaking about the inspiration for his then-brand new album "Divide", Ed said: “I've had the concept for 'Divide' since 2010. I wanted the whole album to feel a bit schizophrenic. My first sort of music that I got into that wasn't from my parents was rap, metal, punk… I went one day listening to 'lowa' [from] SLIPKNOT and the next day listening to Damien Rice's 'O'. It was quite a switch."
As it turns out, SLIPKNOT singer Corey Taylor is also a Sheeran admirer, as he made clear in a 2017 interview with NME. Speaking about Ed's massive commercial success, Corey said at the time: "I'm stoked for people like Ed Sheeran — that kid worked his ass off, so why shouldn't he get the recognition?"