The Cranberries In the End

The Cranberries In the End
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The Cranberries have always possessed the musical gravitas to tug at even the most tightly wound heartstrings. Still, In the End is an especially emotional listen. Just over a year since the death of frontwoman Dolores O'Riordan, the Irish rock band released their eighth and final album, a collection of soulful, stirring songs.
 
On "The Pressure," the album's slow burning penultimate track, O'Riordan sings of disconnect and confusion. "Sometimes I wake up in a bedroom," she croons, "sometimes I just stare into space." The song is brooding and pensive but cathartic nonetheless.
 
Meanwhile, "All Over Now" approaches power ballad status in the very best way. The song's accompanying animated music video finds its protagonist, dressed in a bright yellow rain coat, wandering the rainy Irish countryside. She travels sadly down a lush, sprawling bluff before arriving at her final destination: a lighthouse with an old friend inside.
 
Tinged as they are by recent tragedy, each songs on In the End assumes a mournful, melancholic quality. Fittingly, "All Over Now" ruminates on themes of memory and regret. "Do you remember?" wails O'Riordan, "'Cause I remember it all."
 
Even in its darkest moments, however, the trebly, bright noise and earnest lyricism that pervades the album allow the songs to radiate with hope and emotion. In the End is a fitting last hurrah for an artist of great talent and consequence. (BMG)