Release Date: Apr 26, 2019
Record label: BMG
Genre(s): Pop/Rock, Alternative/Indie Rock
The Lowdown: The 2018 death of Cranberries singer Dolores O’Riordan triggered an international outpouring of grief as fans around the world mourned the loss of the singular voice behind inescapable ’90s hits including “Dreams”, “Linger”, and “Zombie”. The loss of O’Riordan also set off a new round of critical reappraisals as a new generation of listeners rediscovered the subtle artistic depth underpinning commercial smashes like Everybody Else Is Doing It, So Why Can’t We? (which we praised for its “romantic confessionalism” and “atmospheric dream-pop brooding”). Into that conversation now comes In the End, The Cranberries’ eighth and final studio album.
In the months following the unexpected passing of Dolores O'Riordan, the surviving members of the Cranberries decided to complete the album they had been recording together before her accidental death in January 2018. The resulting eighth and final effort, In the End, served as both a goodbye to their inimitable vocalist and the band itself. Along with longtime producer Stephen Street, Fergal Lawler and Mike and Noel Hogan returned the group's sound to the '90s, evoking the spirits of 1994's No Need to Argue and 1996's To the Faithful Departed.
Dolores O'Riordan's 2018 death casts a long shadow over her band's final album, completed posthumously. Many of the titles - Lost, All Over Now and such - seem to unwittingly allude to it. Then there is the chilling poignancy of her opening line: "Remember the night in a hotel in London …", which conjures up a tragic reminder of the location of her passing.
There's a definite sense of ending to The Cranberries latest and final album. As foreshadowed by its title, 'In The End' has strong themes of loss, finality, closure, and retrospect. It is at times, a challenging listen - after all, The Cranberries always take you on a bittersweet journey. Like pouring salt in a wound, they somehow manage to tear open scars that you thought were closed and expose you to your vulnerabilities, time and time again.