The Cranberries Open Up About the 'Painful Process' of Finishing Album Without Dolores O'Riordan
One year after Dolores O’Riordan‘s unexpected death, the remaining members of The Cranberries have spoken out about working on their final album, which the 46-year-old singer had been working on with them before her death.
In a statement on their website, Fergal Lawler, Noel and Mike Hogan spoke to the origins of “In the End” — which will be released on Tuesday, the anniversary of O’Riordan’s death — and the emotional process that came with working on their last project together.
“In early 2017, the four of us got together to rehearse for the ‘Something Else’ Tour,” the band began the statement. “During rehearsals we discussed many times how great it would be to write and work on new material for a new album… the prospect of writing and working on new material for a new album was very exciting.”
Over the next few months, the band began working on “In the End” and had a final demo cut — complete with vocals by Dolores on all eleven songs — by December 2017, with plans to finish the album entirely in early 2018. But things didn’t go as planned after O’Riordan was found dead just 15 days into the new year.
“After Dolores’ devastating and unexpected passing in January 2018, we took some time out and put all plans on hold,” the band explained. “As time passed, we began to think about how we might best honor our close friend and bandmate. This was a very painful process.”
“We remembered how Dolores had been so energized by the prospect of making this record and getting back out on the road to play the songs live, and realized that the most meaningful thing to do was to finish the album we had started with her,” they added. “We felt that this is what she would want. We spoke with Dolores’ family and they agreed.”
Acknowledging that working on the album was a “very emotional process,” the band spoke to grieving O’Riordan’s death, wanting to create an album they — and their former lead singer — would be proud of, as well as coming to terms with their future.
“There were many difficult moments during the recording sessions, particularly the first and last days,” they wrote. “After the first day we all seemed to be thinking the same thing although we didn’t speak about it; if we didn’t try to put our emotions to one side and focus on the work then we were going to do an injustice to Dolores. Knowing that we would never get to play these songs live made it even more difficult.”
“There was also an overwhelming sense of finality knowing that this was the last time that we would be in the same studio together working on a Cranberries album,” the band added. “The last track we recorded in the studio was ‘In the End’ and it was then that it really sunk in; this is it, this is the end.”
On a final note, the Cranberries thanked their families, friends, and fans who have supported them for close to 30 years.
“Without you, none of this would have been possible. It has been an incredible journey,” they wrote, before adding, “We dedicate this album to our dear friend & bandmate Dolores. She will always be with us in her music.”
The Cranberries first announced they were planning to commemorate the 25th anniversary of their debut album “Everybody Else Is Doing it So Why Can’t We” in March 2018.
“We can confirm that since last summer the band had been working with Universal Music on the creation of a very special 25th anniversary edition of the album, a newly remastered version with previously unreleased material of ours as well as other bonus material from the era of our debut album,” the band wrote in a joint statement on their website.
“We had planned to release this special edition this month to coincide with the 25th anniversary. However, given Dolores’ passing in January we put the entire project on hold,” they continued.
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