Salvation (The Cranberries song)

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Salvation single.jpg
Single by The Cranberries
from the album To the Faithful Departed
B-side"I'm Still Remembering", "I Just Shot John Lennon (live)", "Go Your Own Way"
Released6 April 1996 (UK)
RecordedNovember - December 1995
Windmill Lane Studios, Dublin
The Cranberries singles chronology
"Ridiculous Thoughts"
"Free to Decide"
Audio sample
Cranberries - "Salvation"

"Salvation" is the lead single for The Cranberries third studio album To the Faithful Departed. The single had some success in the United States, where it reached number one on Billboard's Modern Rock Tracks chart for four weeks, and reached number five in Italy, number seven in New Zealand, and number eight in Australia and the band's native Ireland. It also reached the top 20 in Walloon Belgium, Finland, France and the United Kingdom.


"Salvation" talks about drug abuse, and how one should refrain from falling into it. The directness of the song was regarded as bland and too preachy by the media and critics, but Dolores O'Riordan said that it wasn't supposed to be an anti-drug song per se, but "kind of anti the idea of becoming totally controlled by anything, any substance at all", O'Riordan stated to Kurt Loder, adding that she knew what it was like and that "it wasn’t a nice experience and it didn’t get me anywhere. It just confused me more."[1] She explained that the meaning behind the song was "reality [being] reality, and unfortunately, no how much you go away, you come back, and it's always here."[2]

Music video[edit]

The music video for "Salvation" was directed in March 1996 by Olivier Dahan in France, for the company Bandits Productions. It features French comedy duo Éric and Ramzy.

The video was the last video for the band to gain heavy rotation on MTV, as later singles failed to gain traction on the network. The video featured a crazed clown (a hybrid of horror monsters Freddy Krueger, Pennywise, and Pinhead) floating around a castle and its surroundings and driving around in a car a group of young girls, implied to be in the thralls of drug addiction. The video cuts between images of Dolores O'Riordan singing the song and a pair of adults, who alternate between trying to wake a comatose daughter from her slumber, and the evil clown tying up and terrorizing the couple (who are now in latex catsuits) while the now awake daughter kissing the clown.

Track listing[edit]

  • Note: "I Just Shot John Lennon" (Live Version) was recorded live at The Point, Dublin on 2nd June 1995 for Radio Telefis Eireann.

Charts and certifications[edit]

Cover versions[edit]

Earthsuit, a Christian group, performed a live cover of this song during their last few tours.

Senses Fail covered this song as a bonus track on their album Still Searching.[28]

Prayer for Cleansing, a vegan straight edge hardcore band, covered the song on their EP The Tragedy released in 2004.

Silent Majority recorded and released a cover version on the obscure Dynamite Rose comp 7".

Dylan Sizemore, an indie artist from Mt. Sterling, Kentucky, recorded and released a cover of the song on his album released 19 March 2011.


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  2. ^ "Cranberries "Departed"". MTV News. Retrieved 2018-02-08.
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  4. ^ " – The Cranberries – Salvation" (in German). Ö3 Austria Top 40.
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  6. ^ " – The Cranberries – Salvation" (in French). Ultratop 50.
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  8. ^ "Top RPM Rock/Alternative Tracks: Issue 2967." RPM. Library and Archives Canada. Retrieved 23 February 2019.
  9. ^ "Hits of the World: Eurochart (IFPI/Nielsen Marketing Research) 05/18/96". Billboard. Nielsen Business Media. 108 (20): 46. 18 May 1996. ISSN 0006-2510.
  10. ^ "The Cranberries: Salvation" (in Finnish). Musiikkituottajat – IFPI Finland.
  11. ^ " – The Cranberries – Salvation" (in French). Les classement single.
  12. ^ " – The Cranberries – Salvation". GfK Entertainment Charts. Retrieved 23 February 2019.
  13. ^ "The Irish Charts – Search Results – Salvation". Irish Singles Chart. Retrieved 23 February 2019.
  14. ^ a b "I singoli più venduti del 1996" (in Italian). Hit Parade Italia. Retrieved 23 February 2019.
  15. ^ "Nederlandse Top 40 – week 19, 1996" (in Dutch). Dutch Top 40 Retrieved 23 February 2019.
  16. ^ " – The Cranberries – Salvation" (in Dutch). Single Top 100. Retrieved 23 February 2019.
  17. ^ " – The Cranberries – Salvation". Top 40 Singles.
  18. ^ "Notowanie nr751" (in Polish). LP3. 21 June 1996. Retrieved 23 February 2019.
  19. ^ "Official Scottish Singles Sales Chart Top 100". Official Charts Company.
  20. ^ " – The Cranberries – Salvation". Singles Top 100.
  21. ^ " – The Cranberries – Salvation". Swiss Singles Chart.
  22. ^ "Official Singles Chart Top 100". Official Charts Company.
  23. ^ a b c "The Cranberries > Charts & Awards > Billboard Singles". allmusic. Retrieved 13 August 2009.
  24. ^ "The ARIA Australian Top 100 Singles 1996". The Australian Record Industry Association Ltd. Archived from the original on 2 November 2015. Retrieved 23 February 2019.
  25. ^ "Rapports annuels 1996" (in French). Ultratop. Retrieved 23 February 2019.
  26. ^ "RPM Year End Alternative Top 50". RPM. Library and Archives Canada. Retrieved 23 February 2019.
  27. ^ "New Zealand single certifications – The Cranberries – Salvation". Recorded Music NZ. Retrieved 23 February 2019.
  28. ^ "Senses Fail announce new release, tour dates". Alternative Press. Alternative Press Magazine, Inc. September 20, 2007. Retrieved March 19, 2017.