(Photo Credit - Big Hassle Media)
The Cranberries are the first band that I can consciously remember listening to as a wee lad in my musically formative years. My parents blared “Zombie” on full blast on the home hi-fi system during Sunday morning weekly cleanings. I jammed out on my fake electric guitar, as a sort of precursor to my journey into the world of music and musical instruments. I would be lying if I said this album didn’t start this journey, and I will forever be grateful to Dolores O'Riordan’s beautiful Irish voice and the long drawn out tones of Noel Hogan’s signature guitar playing style.
The most well known track off of the album is "Zombie"; and hard driving song dripped in heavy guitar riffs and loud drums. The song itself is a protest song about the 1993 IRA bombing in Warrington, Ireland, and is dedicated to the memory of two young gentlemen who tragically lost their live in the attack. It’s the heaviest song on the album, but that doesn’t mean the rest of the album doesn’t carry the sentiment. The heaviness of the song is perfectly balanced by the slow and sometimes ethereal feel of the rest of the album. Not to say that there aren’t other distortion laden sounds in the rest of the album, such as “Daffodil’s Lament”, but these songs have a much different feel to them; certainly none of the heavier rock feelings.
At the risk of rambling too much, I’ll end with this; this album, while maybe not my all time favorite, it is definitely up there, and definitely a close second. It was the first full album I learned to play on guitar, and “Zombie” was the first song I ever played on drum set when I was cutting my teeth in the percussion world. It truly is what ignited my passion for music, and I will always love it.