The Cranberries – In The End
The Cranberries' final album is a remarkable tribute to Dolores O'Riordan
Releasing an album posthumously is a risky affair. Attempting to preserve the integrity of an artist and lead singer, and do the things you reckon they would have done were they there to do it. Of course, we can never know for certain, but In the End feels like it does so successfully. Masterfully produced by the band’s long-time producer Stephen Street, In the End does all it can to provide the closure that fans, family and bandmates are desperately seeking after the untimely death of icon Dolores O’Riordan.
It opens emphatically with All Over Now, a track that has everything we’ve come to expect and adore from The Cranberries: rock undertones, catchy poppy melodic lines, and soaring, beautiful vocals. Although O’Riordan had only recorded demos of the tracks, with the band building the rest from there, the distance is untraceable. It feels so alive, so emphatic, and so together that it’s hard to imagine that she didn’t actually participate in the full process.
'I feel the storm is coming in / I wonder where should I begin?' she muses on second track Lost. Alongside The Cranberries’ typical passion and frenzy, this sense of introspection hangs over the entirety of album, coming to the fore in A Place I Know, and final titular track. With the context of the album in mind, it’s hard not to feel this final track on that extra level.
In the End exemplifies the defiance that The Cranberries, and O’Riordan herself have shown throughout their career. Defiance of the status quo, defiance of violence, and ultimately defiance of death. It’s unmissable, unquestionable and unforgettable.
Listen to: Lost, A Place I Know, In the End