Genre: Alternative rock
The Cranberries are back! Dolores O’Riordan and the boys released their first studio album for eleven years, called Roses, in February of this year and they’ll be in Spain for two nights of the European leg of their tour.
The band from Limerick hit the big time with their first ever album Everybody Else Is Doing It, So Why Can’t We? in 1993, although it was not an instant success. But as luck would have it, Suede were touring at the time, and when the Cranberries became their support band, people went home talking as much about the support act as the headliners – MTV picked up on this, Linger was an overnight hit, so was the re-released Dreams and their album flew back into the charts in the top position.
People instantly fell in love with Dolores and her plaintive whine, one of the most distinctive voices in music, with her very Irish pronunciation (“moy modher, moy fadher”) and fantastic way of putting emotion into the songs – while the Celtic-folk tinge to the music made the Cranberries the perfect tonic for the Guinness sponsored Irish theme bars that were springing up all over the planet. People just couldn’t get enough of Ireland in the nineties – and there was nothing like a bit of Cranberry juice to quench that thirst for all things Paddy.
It just got better when No Need To Argue came out. Zombie and Ode to My Family were two of the biggest songs not just of 1995, but of the decade and The Cranberries were now one of the hottest properties in music.
They always say that the third album is the hardest, and although To the Faithful Departed had great songs of the calibre of Salvation, Free to Decide and When You’re Gone, sales were in decline. Album four, Bury the Hatchet, also failed to match the successes of the first two efforts. All this comes as something of a surprise. Surely songs like Promises, Animal Instinct and Just My Imagination were just as massive as some of the earlier stuff? Apparently not, but this view has probably been distorted by living in Spain, one country where the Cranberries remained as popular as ever.
In 2003 the band was put on the shelf, and the members drifted off to work on solo projects. These things never last though, and in 2010 they were back for a reunion tour, but came in for some criticism for what turned out to be more of a shameless marketing ploy for Dolores’ new solo album. There are fears that this new tour is more about promoting their new album, which has failed to attract much media or critical attention, than what most fans really want, which is the chance to relive all their favourite hits from the nineties. But the Spanish press singling out the poor Cranberries out for criticism in this department seems unfair. Surely tours to promote new albums are the kind of thing that bands have always done, so why is what the Cranberries are doing so different? Why can’t they play some of their new stuff if they want? I bet Bruce and Madonna are as well…
Did you know: It seems hard to believe, but despite being one of the mega bands of the nineties, The Cranberries never had a number one single in the UK, the USA or even in Ireland!
Monday July 9, 2012 Barcelona El Poble Espanyol
Tuesday July 10, 2012 Madrid Palacio Vistalegre
2. Animal Instinct
4. Dreaming My Dreams
6. Never Grow Old
7. Ode to My Family
8. Just My Imagination
10. When You’re Gone
11. I Can’t Be With You
12. Waltzing Back
13. Schizophrenic Playboy
14. Free to Decide
16. Ridiculous Thoughts
Encore: 18. Shattered
19. Dying in the Sun