It’s been eleven years since we’ve seen an album from The Cranberries. The Irish alternative rock band parted ways back in 2004 during work on the followup to their 2001 album Wake Up and Smell the Coffee.
The hiatus ended in 2009 during a celebration for singer Dolores O’Riordan. Just like that, the group was back in the game. This past February, they released the much anticipated album Roses, and subsequently began a world tour to promote the the offering.
Roses is an 11-track stroll through some truly Cranberries material. For the most part, it’s a slow and melodic pace with only a few really standout songs. This isn’t to say that the album doesn’t bring enough to the table to stand on its own, mind you. It’s just that it lends itself well to use as music at a summer cocktail party.
The album’s first single, “Show Me”, is a powerful song reminicient of “Dreams” in its quick lead-in and epic delivery. Meanwhile, the second single, “Tomorrow”, is an upbeat romp about overcoming the nagging tendency to overthink things. The other tracks are a mixture of alternative rock fare that explore themes of love and relationships. And hey, for an album that was recorded over only two sessions, it’s damn nice sounding.
Roses incorporates lots of vocal harmonies, easy percussion, strings, and clean guitar riffs in order to craft a very listenable album. While it doesn’t break down any barriers or explore any mind-blowing territory, it’s still an enjoyable experience, and not one that we’ve heard for quite some time. It’s like seeing an estranged friend after a decade of silence.
While it’s too early to tell, and the band hasn’t spoken about any new projects, one can only hope that this isn’t the last we hear about the Irish wondergroup. This was a good Cranberries album, but it left me wanting something more.