The Cranberries
Stars: The Best of 1992–2002


4.0
excellent

Review

by rasputin USER (196 Reviews)
September 10th, 2008 | 25 replies


Release Date: 2002 | Tracklist

Review Summary: Picking the tracks to appear on Stars could have perhaps been likened to picking between amazing chocolate and even more amazing chocolate, but a very decent selection of songs has been chosen to showcase the career of one of alternative rock’s greats.

As cringe-worthy as some of their music might be, The Cranberries are possibly one of my all time favourite bands. This is due in part to such a large number of amazing songs, but what make the band for me, and probably for most others, is Dolores O’Riordan. Her voice was what the Cranberries were all about; it was even able to make beautiful songs from some of the shoddiest lyrics I’ve ever come across. Nonetheless, a greatest hits from one of the greatest alternative rock bands is bound to be fantastic, and The Cranberries were full aware of this fact. In that respect, they gave their loyal fans a huge double album featuring the best of their career, as well as both previously unreleased and live tracks. It’s no surprise that the band’s strength lay in their singles, and that’s obviously what you’ll find on this compilation; a collection of what is considered the band’s best songs which would no doubt please long time fans, and be a great pick up for the casual listener. The one possible criticism I can have about the compilation is not what is on it, rather what is missed out. A number of tracks that I would consider some of the best are mysteriously absent from Stars, ultimately for the album’s disadvantage.

Stars does well to capture the moods of each Cranberries album, from Everybody Else Is Doing It, So Why Can't We? through to Wake Up and Smell the Coffee. The dreamy feel of Everybody Else Is Doing It… can be found in the first two tracks, ‘Dreams’ and ‘Linger’, the latter being the one that threw the band into the limelight. Although having already labeled them as a singles band, there were a number of forgotten tracks across their albums (and EP) which would have done very well on Stars. In the case of Everybody Else Is Doing It, So Why Can't We?, take your pick from ‘Pretty’, ‘Not Sorry’, or ‘How’, all three being just as good as the two tracks displayed on Stars. What was unfortunate was that The Cranberries completely ignored their first ever release, the Uncertain EP, which contains one of the Cranberries’ best songs in ‘Pathetic Senses’.

The band did well in exploiting No Need to Argue for Stars, taking no less than 5 tracks from what is considered by many as their best album. The rocking ‘Zombie’ comes with no surprise, being the single track which is most associated with the band. Even after so many years of listening to the band, hearing O’Riordan blare In your head will never get old. You can also find ‘Ode to My Family’, ‘I Can’t Be With You’, ‘Ridiculous Thoughts’ and the haunting ‘Daffodil Lament’ on Stars, a rather decent selection. However, why ‘Yeat’s Grave’ was missed out is beyond me, easily one of the top tracks of No Need to Argue.

In terms of whole albums, the Cranberries went downhill after No Need to Argue. The strength of the singles found on To the Faithful Departed, Bury the Hatchet and to a lesser extent, Wake Up and Smell the Coffee was no less than the ones found on the band’s first two albums, but as a complete collection of songs they did not match the early days. Fortunately for Stars, this has little effect, seeing as it’s only the singles which are displayed. A good range of songs were chosen from these three albums, ranging from the heaviest Cranberries song ‘Hollywood’, to favourites such as ‘Animal Instinct’ and ‘Promises’. It is at this point I will ask you, reader, if the song ‘Cordell’ rings a bell. The second last track on To the Faithful Departed, ‘Cordell’ is an absolutely beautiful piece which does well to show off the fragility that can be found in O’Riordan’s voice. As with ‘Yeat’s Grave’, I cannot think of a reason why this was left out in favour of lesser tracks, but maybe it’s just me.

To finish off the album, The Cranberries give us two previously unreleased songs (‘New New York’ and ‘Stars’) and 5 live tracks. This was a nice touch and gave the album that little bit more worth to those who already have most if not all of the tracks. Listening to O’Riordan live is just as good as hearing her on record; her voice is truly remarkable. In that respect, the live tracks are fantastic to listen to. ‘New New York’ and ‘Stars’ are not on par with a lot of the other tracks on Stars, but the fact that they’re here gives the compilation all the more value. So what have I achieved with this review? Probably only that my version of Stars would include most of the songs The Cranberries have released. Nonetheless, the more down to earth version of Stars does a fine job in capturing the best work from over the Cranberries’ illustrious career. Certain tracks which have every right of being on the album have been excluded, more specifically ‘Yeat’s Grave’, ‘Cordell’ and a number of earlier tracks, but you can be sure that ‘Zombie’ is on here, which should keep most of you happy.

Note: The live tracks are unfortunately only available on the limited edition of Stars. As they're not on the above tracklisting, I'll put them here for reference.

# Zombie
# Ode to My Family
# Animal Instinct
# Salvation
# Daffodil Lament



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user ratings (54)
Chart.
4
excellent

Comments:Add a Comment 
sadmafioso
September 11th 2008


318 Comments


what is it with metalheads and the goddamn cranberries?

rasputin
September 11th 2008


14550 Comments


The only Cranberries release Mike left for anyone else to review, I thought 'why not'.

what is it with metalheads and the goddamn cranberries?

Cranberries are fucking brutal manThis Message Edited On 09.10.08

AtavanHalen
September 11th 2008


17927 Comments


I think everyone in the history of ever has tried to sing Zombie's chorus and failed.

rasputin
September 11th 2008


14550 Comments


my girlfriend sings it rather well actually, but she's Irish so that doesn't count

DaveyBoy
Staff Reviewer
September 11th 2008


20857 Comments


I am hungry for chocolate now... I'd pick the "even more amazing chocolates" myself.
Seriously, this was a good review Rasputin. Well summed up as a 'Best Of' album, while also giving little tidbits of info about their studio albums along the way.

rasputin
September 11th 2008


14550 Comments


Cheers, I tried to make it a sort general review of the band and their career as well as briefly explaining the songs and such.

Altmer
September 11th 2008


5652 Comments


It's Ode to My Family, not Ode to Joy, get it right rasputin

rasputin
September 11th 2008


14550 Comments


rofl, my bad. Don't know how that slipped. Will fix now.

Willie
Moderator
September 11th 2008


16051 Comments


I don't have any of their stuff anymore. I think you've convinced me to just buy this and be done with it. Good review too.
That other guy is right about metalheads and this album though.

jrowa001
September 11th 2008


8750 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

this album def helped me get into the band. now since ive acquired their first two albums, i tend to listen to those more

BallsToTheWall
September 11th 2008


44669 Comments


68? Damnit. Kidding, nice review though. I don't have this but appears to have plenty of awesome songs. My only complaint would be a lack of Dying In The Sun but Ode To My Family is in my opinion one of the greatest songs ever written.

I have an excuse as for the metalhead association. I'm a mick who grew up listening to this album when I was just a young lad. Band hasn't aged over the years. This Message Edited On 09.11.08

Digging: Mare Cognitum - Phobos Monolith

TheGreatD17
September 11th 2008


1141 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Weird, I just bought this on iTunes. It is a fine compilation.

rasputin
September 11th 2008


14550 Comments


[quote=Balls]. Band hasn't aged over the years. [/quote]
Yeah, their music is just as awesome.

kitsch
September 11th 2008


5107 Comments


I think everyone in the history of ever has tried to sing Zombie's chorus and failed.


epitomized by andy in the office. the episode traveling salesman/the return i believe?

rasputin
September 13th 2008


14550 Comments


oh dolores, is there anything you can't do

sadmafioso
September 13th 2008


318 Comments


not be annoying

rasputin
September 16th 2008


14550 Comments


i love it when she's annoying, = the cranberries

bach
May 27th 2014


12913 Comments


rules

Digging: Breathless - Chasing Promises

Green Baron
May 27th 2014


20014 Comments


zombeheheheheheheh

Digging: Kayo Dot - Coffins On Io

bach
May 27th 2014


12913 Comments


SHE SUCKED MY DICK
NIIIIGUH
SHE SUCKED MY DICK



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