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on October 24, 2001
As huge fan of "Everybody Else..." and "No Need to Argue", it's tough for me to say that "To the Faithful Departed" was under par and as a result, I never really gave "Bury the Hatchet" a chance. I didn't let their latest CD "Wake Up & Smell the Coffee" go past and I'm really glad that I didn't. Despite the review that blasted this album's lack of creative lyrics, I've never bought a Cranberries album for the lyrics. I've always been more interested in the music and Dolores' sweet voice. My initial reaction (having listened to this album for about four days now) is that this album is most like "No Need to Argue" with its mix of fast & hard songs with slow & melodic ones. My favorite songs are "Analyse" (which sort of reminds me of "Dreams"), "Never Grow Old", "This is the Day" and the title track. If you are able to listen to at least those four, I think you'll be convinced that this is an album definitely worth buying.
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on October 29, 2001
My expectations for the new Cranberries album, were high, to say the least. Usually when expectations are that high, one ends up being disappointed with the final result. When I popped "Wake Up And Smell The Coffee" into my cd player and listened to it for the first time, all of my prior expectations were blown out of the water, it was 100 times better then I could ever hope for!
The music haunts me, I find myself humming the tunes that I can't get out of my head. From the absolute beauty of songs like "Never Grow Old", "Chocolate Brown", and "Dying Inside", in which Dolores sings: "The lady loved her gold, the lady lost her soul.", It's lyrics like that that give me chills down my spine.
Of course the true rocker in me has worn out tracks like "I Really Hope", "Wake Up And Smell The Coffee", and "This Is The Day", the song that in my opinion has surpassed the previously untouchable "Zombie" as the best rock song ever!
All in all, this album is a must have! I only hope that The Cranberries will be making music for many years to come.
--Richard Ortiz
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on March 4, 2002
... While most fans of the Cranberries will tell you that they like the band for their unique rock sound and crystalline vocals, Dolores O'Riordan's lyrics are indeed some of the most refreshingly sublime lines around today. Listen to them closely and you will discover that they are simply human, approachable verses that reflect a close examination of life itself.
In addition to O'Riordan's lyrics, listeners will find that all four members of the band have grown in maturity and musical range. After a bit of a break since "Bury the Hatchet," in which Dolores and bandmate Noel Hogan welcomed new children into their separate families, the band returns with a renewed, optimistic approach to the album. You won't find anything as intense as "Zombie" here (WUASTC comes closest), but the disc does provide an assortment of the styles that Cran fans have come to love.
If you like the band's lighter songs, like "Dreams," and "Linger," you'll like the new songs, "Analyze," and "Every Morning" (not to be confused w/ the Sugar Ray song), among others. If you like their harder stuff, like "Zombie," and "Salvation," you'll find some new anthemic rockers, like "WUASTC," and "This is the Day." And I don't know anybody who wouldn't like the U.S. bonus track, the upbeat, exotic "Cape Town."
Listening to the Cranberries is the musical equivalent of standing under a cool, clear waterfall in a lush Irish forest - Refreshing! Don't Analyze, just let the music wash over you.
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on November 13, 2001
Even thought they never went away, the Cranberries are back with another strong effort. This album certainly has the feel of their first two releases, but yet has a fresh and updated sound. Alright, so Shakespare or Hemingway might find the lyrics a little on the simple side, but the songs themselves are so easy to listen to with the catchy melodies and of course Dolores' voice. Some real nice guitar work, kind of like how George Harrison's non-flashy but oh so effective style just seemed to fit and fill where needed on those great Beatles songs. A couple of experimental sounds and effects are kept to a minimum, but just enought to make it interesting.
"Wake Up And Smell The Coffee" and "This Is The Day" show that the band can rock. "Never Grow Old" and "The Concept" display the band's softer side. "Analyse" is the obvious choice for the first single with it's clever and overall "pop" sound.
I really like this album a lot and I think that Cranberries fans will like it too. I thought "Bury The Hatchet" was a very good album too, but this release should put the bad memories of "Faithfully Departed" behind us.
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on October 27, 2001
On their latest album, Irish supergroup the Cranberries, urge their fans to "Wake Up and Smell the Coffee". And if you haven't tasted this incredible Irish Coffee yet, you're missing out! One taste and you'll be hooked. But all puns aside, this album will blow you away -- the combination of the Cranberries' tight musical arrangements and the gorgeous, ethereal voice of Dolores O'Riordan is guaranteed to hypnotize you into a trance. And while I've enjoyed all of their albums, if you're looking for that classic Cranberries sound, this album marks the band's spectacular return to form (with a little help from Stephen Street -- producer of Everybody Else... & No Need to Argue). This album has got something for everyone: Harder-edged songs like "This is the Day" and the title track; up-tempo songs like "I Really Hope" and "Analyse"; soft and mellow songs like "Never Grow Old" and "The Concept". It's tough to pick stand-out tracks, because ALL 14 tracks (including the bonus track 'Capetown') are stand-outs. But, don't take my word for it -- take a listen to the sample tracks and 'hear for yourself'.
Dolores writes purely and simply, and from the heart. So if you're looking for incomprehensible psychobabble, look elsewhere; if you're looking for honest, heartfelt and beautiful music, sung with a conviction unlike any other, look no further than "Wake Up and Smell the Coffee".
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on November 2, 2001
After over a decade of experience, The Cranberries once and for all, refine and reaffirm their musical identity with the fifth album release, "Wake Up And Smell The Coffee." Getting back together with producer Stephen Street (album 1&2) allowed them to recapture that special sound so easily recognizable. The release of their first single off the new album, "Analyse", reminiscing the guitar sounds of their 1993's hit, Dreams, was an instant hit and a promising glimpse into "Wake Up And Smell The Coffee." Lead singer, Dolores O'Riordan's vocal delivery in 'Dying Inside', 'Carry On' and 'This Is The Day' are extremely powerful, and is the most distinctive element of the band's sound. 'This Is The Day' is the heavier track on the new album, taking us back to the style of 'Zombie'- one of the band's biggest hit to the day. The Cranberries show much diversity in their new masterpieces, using creative introductions exemplified in the title track, 'Wake Up And Smell The Coffee' and an exciting beat in the beautiful love song, 'The Concept.' Dolores' concern about the future of the world is portrayed very artistly in 'Time Is Ticking Out' with lyrics that leave you pondering about what we've done to our precious planet. Even after ten years of writing music, four previous albums under their belt, and 3 different producers, The Cranberries have not added nor detracted anything from their original formula, creating an outstanding fifth album that no one should let themselves miss out on.
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on October 30, 2001
Obviously the critics writing reviews for the Cranberries are not die hard fans of the group. They have absolutely no respect for this group. Dolores' style has always remained the same: repetitive, simple lyrics, and a great melody. Why does music today have to provide a deeper meaning? I don't know about you, but music to me is a relaxing tool that sets me free of the restraints of everyday life. It's supposed to be fun. So the lyrics aren't metaphysical and controversial - who cares? I've been listening to the Cranberries for almost nine years and I've never been disappointed. Dolores' possesses one of the most incredible and distinctive voices I have ever heard. Who are you comparing the Cranberries with? The Backstreet boys and Britney Spears? Get real. The Cranberries' music comes from their hearts and wants it to provide enjoyment. Their last album to come out, Bury the Hatchet, received poor reviews also. I'm disgusted with critics today. Find someone else to pick on. I will remain faithfully the Cranberries' biggest fan.
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on October 28, 2001
The magic is still there: that's the first impression I got when I first heard the new album "Wake Up and Smell the Coffee". If you didn't heard it yet, I'm really sorry for you, my friend, but tough words ain't enough to describe music I'll try my best, ok? :o)
The first track, "Never Grow Old", reminds me of one of the very first songs of the band ("Nothing left at all"), tough this one is full of hope (instead of that other song wich was sort of a last desperate cry before the abism), it's a ballad to remain always young in spirit. It is the call to feel the breeze of today, because today may be the perfect day if we try.
Folowing this first advice of what would be a change of attitude to full positive feelings (in Dolores own words "...guess the lows make the highs far superior.") comes their first single "Analyse", this time you don't just have to feel the breeze but completly breath the air and enjoy the beauty that's around us, close your eyes, shut your analysing device a.k.a brain and let your heart do the work, of course the song is a great way to achieve that state of mind.
If you like Noel Hogan's guitar style, then you are in full emotion when you hear the chords of "Time is Ticking Out" wich sound delicious troughout the song and with the company of a smooth bass guitar texture of his brother Mike to build a persistent ecological protest against human stupidity. The musical world of "politicaly correct" artists may have forgotten about Chernobyl, a difuse radiation incident on the past (in a world when yesterday news seem ancient history), but not the cranberries, they still have something to say about it, in hopes of not repeating the errors of the past for the good of our children.
On "Dying Inside", I could apreciate that dolores voice remains angelical, it's really like she's came down from heaven just to whisper you on the ears.The Cranberries are a strong rock band, without week points on their formation, want to check their drummers strenght? Then you have full proof on "This is the day", a song that's for sure to become one of the hit singles of this album. I can imagine how comfortable may Fergal Lawler (their drummer) feel when playing this song wich is an ode for ethernal friendship trough faith.
The Cranberries always find place to experimentation and this album is for no exception, take "The Concept" as an example of this statement, for sure a personal song from Dolores to her husband Don Burton, this song demonstrates the influence of ambient music on doloroes that she likes to hear from time to time, transpolated to a cranberry language, it has also some "synth-oriental" feeling, if you know what I mean.
In the folowing years (I guess), will be possible to find in the dictionary this: "wuastc: acronym for Wake Up And Smell The Coffee", that's the importance I give for the song that gave this #5 album of the band his title. If "Go your own way", was the song they choosed as a tribute for Fleetwood Mac on the Rumours album (together with many artists like for example Sonic Youth), w.u.a.s.t.c is an evolution on a scheme where power is not oposite to armony.On this song dolores is critic on some of her negative attitudes from the past and she's ready to wake up to life.
"Pretty Eyes" is a sweet song I would like to hear every time I'm together with my gilrfriend. One upbeat song, wich in a way remains me of the 80's, is "I really hope", sort of a warning to your lover to remain always with you, I really like the catchy beat of this song and I hope it becames one of the singles of this album as well.Talking about decades feelings, this time we can trip to the 60's and listen to "Every Morning", you can't deny this is an optimistic album and this is certainly a tune to prove it. Dolores finally burys the past ( a process that began on the previous "Bury the Hatchet" album ) and she no longer cares about it, she's really enjoying her life today and it's an invitation to do the same with your life: don't let the years pass you by.
Back to our days and with a psychodelic breeze ( something that is in syncrony with the artwork of the album, for the second time left on the hands of Mr. Storm Thorgerson ) is the song "Do you know", next to this one is "Carry On" wich reflects a connection with their first two megasuccesfull albums: "Take destiny by the hand and lead it far away, Take it to another land, we will all decay". It's a blink to all loyal fans of the band trough the years.
This album doesn't resist the advances in musical recording technology and Stephen Street is always a guarante of good taste when it's about to "Play with the buttons around".But a good musician always depends on the basics, and that is to make good music. "Chocolate Brown" let's you enjoy the cranberries and their lead singer on their very own, without intervention of heavy production, her voice is unique; once again is like your special friends are playing on your living room, it's magic, the magic of real music!
Depending on the region you bought the album, you will enjoy extra tracks, like the "In the Ghetto" song (made popular by Elvis Presley, one of the musical influences Dolores admits) or "Capetown" a song written back from their first tour in southafrica. Or even also some live tracks from the famous Bercy (Paris) show from 1999.
But this album never lacks of surprises and if you have it, then head to [their website] for details on how to enjoy yeat another great song: "Many Days".
Would like to write more about the album, but I'm sorry, I have to go... to push random play at my cd player ;o)!!!!!!!
Matias[...]
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on October 29, 2001
The question: What would it be like if the Cranberries created a collection of music that somehow combined two of their surprisingly incongruent albums, `Everybody Else Is Doing It, So Why Can't We?' and `To the Faithful Departed'? The answer: They'd call it `Wake Up And Smell The Coffee'...an album that re-defines the rock music genre to create a collection of music that you'll definitely want to own.
The Cranberries' new MCA release, `Wake Up And Smell The Coffee' not only marks the return of producer Stephen Street, but also the return of the sound that introduced audiences to the band in 1993. Still, the Cranberries' new album also reflects a distinct level of intensity that fans will remember from 1996's `To The Faithful Departed'.
The album opens with the apprehensive yet soft song "Never Grow Old". Dolores's lyrics sing of the optimism that comes with a newfound revelation vis-à-vis life's wonder. Still, underneath the obvious, her voice suppresses a fragment of sadness as the lyrics timidly explore the notion of maturity. The song's acoustic guitars, soft piano, and gentle vocals make "Never Grow Old" a haunting opening track to a salient album full of mystique and passion.
Though `Wake Up And Smell The Coffee' as a whole, is generally soft and melodic, (think the Cranberries debut album, `Everybody Else Is Doing it, So Why Can't We?') the band didn't ignore the power of a good rock song or two. "This Is The Day" is an absolutely incredible song founded on guitar and drums. The spiritual undertones of the song's lyrics have the ability to evoke concentrated emotions; while corroborating the feel, drummer Fergal Lawler creates a steady, unfettered rock beat on drums. Bassist Mike Hogan demonstrates, as is represented within the entire album, an increased strength on bass guitar.
Correspondingly, the album's title track "Wake Up And Smell The Coffee" is a song that will likely start the set at live performances for The Cranberries in 2001. The percolating mood sounds of the intro disguise the song's overall (excuse the pun) flavor. It takes listeners over a minute to hear the striking guitar chords that will continue to pound through the harder, yet still leisurely-performed song. Lyrically, "Wake Up And Smell The Coffee" explores what fans might expect: the idea of recognizing self-worth while ignoring the fickle expectations of the world. Still, the song goes deeper to become more specific to vocalist Dolores O'Riordan herself, as she exposes personal experiences in overcoming feelings of inadequacies.
Another highlight on the album, is the upbeat pop-like tune "Every Morning" picks up the melody of the album and creates a blissful song that's incomparable in style to any other Cranberries song to date. The theme of "Every Morning" hinges again on the notion of time...or in this case, the notion of growing older and losing track of time. But if you think all of that sounds like a downer, it's actually quite the opposite. The message speaks of personal contentment; and the music backs it up with a fun, simple chorus.
Perhaps the biggest departure for the band thus far can be heard within the `Wake Up..." song entitled "The Concept". With its unexpected drum-loop opening with phonographic static, it isn't until the song's close that fans can detect the hint of a familiar sound. "The Concept" is a slower, beat-driven song encouraging the continued belief in (not to quote Celine Dion, but) the power of love.
Similar in lyrical message, is the love song "I Really Hope"- a rocking song that speaks of a persistent desire to maintain the zeal in a romantic relationship. Musically, "I Really Hope" is another up-tempo song that creates a lush blend within the overall sound of The Cranberries' `Wake Up And Smell The Coffee'.
The two new songs that most reflect the feel and sound of the band's debut album and earlier works, are "Dying Inside", and "Do You Know". The link to the band's earlier modus operandi is musical in "Do You Know" and vocal in "Dying Inside".
"Do You Know" is a somewhat confrontational piece about perspective, while the music is reminiscent of 1993's "Wanted". "Dying Inside" probes deeper to expose the soul corruption that can occur as prosperity leads to the love of money. Vocally, this song clearly captures Dolores O'Riordan's wraithlike voice as it peacefully soars and descends the breadth of the music, creating a rhythmical opus that steadily mollifies as it unabashedly absorbs the listener's attention.
From the hit single, "Analyse", to the bonus track, "Cape Town" (found only on US versions of the album), `Wake Up And Smell The Coffee' is not only the strongest, best-written and performed album of the Cranberries career; but also an irresistible album for any music collection.
If you're ready for an album where every track from open to close is a song with which you can easily identify and appreciate, `Wake Up And Smell The Coffee' is undeniably for you.
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on November 30, 2001
I've been wanting to write a review on this CD ever since it was released. I knew that if I were to write a review right away that my review would be biased. I wouldn't have given enough time for the art to settle and I would of given a higher rating or a better review than I should have.
Anyway...
The Cranberries find themselves once again with their old friend Steven Street. Steven Street produced The Cranberries first two beautiful albums, "Everyone Else is Doing it so Why Can't We?" and "No Need To Argue". On this album like all of their albums the music is crisp and clear. The songs are never drowned out by overdubbed guitars or miscellaneous sounds. Dolores O'Riordan's Vocals are as prestine as ever. What I like about her vocals is that it gets stronger on every album. She sings with clarity and her guys back her up with their music.
On the opening track, "Never Grow Old" her breathy vocals floats and touches you in the most perfect ways...
On "Dying Inside" her clear vocals expresses the meaning of the song in the most powerful way. Her change of pitch in this song is done in a way that runs smoothes and is nothing short of breathtaking.
On the fast pace "I Really Hope" Dolores has to use different vocal muscles to sing the song. She again does this with no problem. Beautiful...
On the Played and Record Live "Chocolate Brown" Dolores's vocals recorded on one mic reminds me of Sinead O'Connor. Beautiful Song.
On the American version bonus track "Cape Town". The main and backup vocals are amazing and VERY fun to sing to.
The Guitars are vibrant. Throughout the album, Noel Hogan's soft picks at the guitar really adds character to the songs.
On the opening Track "Never Grow Old" his soft lullable like picks at the guitar help make the song float.
On "This is the Day" his heavy guitar helps make this song one of the best Rock songs by the Cranberries to date. His artistic influence in the middle of the song definitely help take the Cranberries to a different level.
On the do whop 60's feel "Every Morning", again soft picks at the guitar help set the mood. Exquisite...
Even on the cover song "In the Ghetto"(not available on the North American Version) the guitars are simple yet beautiful. I get great joy just by listening to the guitar.
The upbeat older song "Do You Know" has acoustic guitars as their older songs. Refreshing...
When this album came out I went back and listened to their old albums. Mike Hogan the bassist has always been in the background. He seems to be always at the back burner... On each new album, the bass guitar seems to be more and more noticable.
On the title track, that opening guitar riffs that merge into the beatings of the drums JUST WOULDN'T BE the same without the clever use of the bass.
The soft "Carry On" the melody is carried by the soft touch of Mike's Bass.
The political "Time is Ticking Out" the ska influence skip of a beat is transformed by the different sounds that Mike picks out. Every major change is made by the bass. Great song. The Club Remix of the song is pretty good as well.
And Fergal Lawler who adds percussion to the whole mix. His influence on the songs have always been noticable. He has always had great ideas ad again on WUASTC he proves himself again.
The poppy "The Concept" he uses a drum loop. It says that the Cranberries are still in the game. They know that the influence on today's music is pop stars. But, don't get me wrong. This song by far is better than any pop song on the radio.
On the first single "Analyse" the song begin with Fergal showing off this talent on the drums. This "Dreams" like song has similar percussion as their first single "Dreams".
On "Pretty Eyes" the snare drum used by fergal is one of the main focuses of the song. Far from distracting. Only Improvising.
All and all, the Cranberries music have always been good and on this album they prove to be great at what they do. But, from listening to their older albums, the first three. I notice one thing missing... The Irish/Celtic Influence in their music that made us fall in love with them in the first place. It is absent in "Bury The Hatchet" as well as on this album. It's Unfortunate. Though the music is good, the lack of their roots make them sound like just a Rock band. And though Dolores' vocal are as strong as ever and she does different things with her voice as in softer, breathier, etc, her back up vocals on this album fails to impress me. I miss the beautiful back up vocals she had on the first and third album. On this album some songs have beautiful back up vocals but nothing new. I hope that on the next Cranberries Album, they will somehow find a way to return to their roots. If not, I will still buy their albums and enjoy them as I always have. Great job on your fifth effort!
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