Adele almost wrecked Ed Sheeran's album launch by block-booking vinyl factories

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Adele almost wrecked Ed Sheeran's album launch by booking up most of the world's vinyl factories to press copies of her own new record.

The Shape of You hitmaker released his latest LP, = (equals), on Friday, and revealed fans of the non-digital format were almost forced to do without as his fellow Brit had commandeered many of the world's vinyl pressing plants ahead of the release of her own long-awaited record, 30, next month.

"There's like three vinyl factories in the world so you have to do it like really upfront and Adele had basically booked up all the vinyl factories so we had to get a slot and get our album in there," he told Australian radio hosts Kyle and Jackie O. "Me, Coldplay, Adele, Taylor (Swift), ABBA, Elton (John), all of us were trying to get our vinyls printed at the same time."

Adele also bemoaned the difficulty she had in booking vinyl plants in an interview with BBC Radio 1's Greg James earlier this month.

"I'm printing CDs and vinyl but there is a 25-week lead time," she told him. "So many CD and vinyl factories bl**dy closed down even before Covid so I can't print them anywhere."

The format has become increasingly popular among music fans who want a different experience to streaming, and U.K. vinyl sales soared by 30 per cent last year. In addition to Covid-19, vinyl plants were also hit by a shortage of PVC, the compound used to make vinyl, after extreme weather in Texas earlier this year forced chemical plants to close.

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