The Cranberries are an alternative rock band from Limerick, Ireland. They formed in 1990 when singer Dolores O’Riordan responded to an advertisement put out by guitarist Noel Hogan, bassist Mike Hogan, and drummer Fergal Lawler after their singer, Niall Quinn, left their band, The Cranberry Saw Us. The group was convinced to hire her when she brought them a rough version of the song “Linger,” which consisted of lyrics and melodies she had written to one of their existing demos.
After O’Riordan joined, the band changed their name to The Cranberries and began recording demo tapes. One of these demo tapes, which included the songs “Linger” and “Dreams,” began a bidding war between several major British record labels, and the group ended up signing with Island Records. In late 1992 and early 1993, they released their first album, Everybody Else Is Doing It, So Why Can’t We?, and two singles, “Linger” and “Dreams.” Though the album and singles were relatively unsuccessful at first, “Linger” and “Dreams” were re-released in 1994, reaching numbers 14 and 27 on the charts, respectively. These re-releases helped the album reach number 1 on the UK Album Charts.
Their second album, No Need to Argue, debuted at number 6 on the US charts when it was released in late 1994. This album included the songs “Zombie” and “Ode to My Family,” which reached numbers 1 and 11 on the Modern Rock Charts, respectively. “Zombie,” a protest song, was written during their English tour the previous year, in memory of two children, Jonathan Ball and Tim Parry, who had been killed in the Warrington bombings. The following year, they released two additional singles, “I Can’t Be With You” and “Ridiculous Thoughts.” In 1996, their third album, To the Faithful Departed, was released, reaching number 2 on the UK Album Chart and 4 on the Billboard 200. The first single of the album, “Salvation,” reached number 1 on t the Modern Rock Tracks chart. Two other singles from the album, “Free to Decide” and “When You’re Gone,” made the Billboard Hot 100.
In 1999, they released their next album, Bury the Hatchet. Only one single from this album, “Promises,” charted in the US, though some of the other singles were popular in other countries, such as France and Austria. Two years later, in 2001, they released a fifth album, Wake Up and Smell the Coffee. None of the singles from this album charted. This was the last album that the group released before announcing in 2003 that they would be going on hiatus to pursue solo careers.
In 2009, The Cranberries reunited for a North American and European tour. In 2012, they released their latest album, Roses. This album was originally planned to be released in 2004, but the recordings they had made were scrapped after the band announced that they would be going on hiatus.