Zombie (song)

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"Zombie"
The Cranberries - Zombie.jpg
Standard artwork (CD and vinyl edition pictured)
Single by The Cranberries
from the album No Need to Argue
Released 19 September 1994
Format
Recorded 1993 at Windmill Lane Studios
Genre
Length
  • 5:06 (LP version)
  • 4:11 (international edit)
  • 3.52 (U.S. radio edit)
Label Island
Songwriter(s) Dolores O'Riordan
Producer(s) Stephen Street
The Cranberries singles chronology
"Linger"
(1993)
"Zombie"
(1994)
"Ode to My Family"
(1994)

"Linger"
(1993)
"Zombie"
(1994)
"Ode to My Family"
(1994)
Music video
"Zombie" on YouTube
Audio sample

"Zombie" is a protest song by Irish rock band The Cranberries, written about the 1993 IRA bombing in Warrington, and in memory of two young victims, Johnathan Ball and Tim Parry.[1] It was released in September 1994 as the lead single from their second studio album, No Need to Argue (1994). It preceded the release of No Need to Argue by two weeks. The song was written by the band's lead singer Dolores O'Riordan, and reached No. 1 on the charts in Australia, Belgium, France, Denmark and Germany.

It won the "Best Song" award at the 1995 MTV Europe Music Awards.[2]

In 2017, the song was released as an acoustic, stripped down version on the band's Something Else album.[3]

Composition[edit]

The lyrics and chords of "Zombie" were written by Dolores O'Riordan during the Cranberries' English Tour in 1993. The song was written in response to the death of Johnathan Ball and Tim Parry, who had been killed in the IRA bombing in Warrington earlier that year.[4]

The lyrics also reference the Irish Easter Rising with the lines: It’s the same old theme / Since nineteen-sixteen / In your head, in your head, they’re still fightin' / With their tanks, and their bombs / And their bombs, and their guns / In your head, in your head, they are dying'.

Reception[edit]

The Rough Guide to Rock identified the album No Need to Argue as "more of the same" as the Cranberries' debut album, except for the song "Zombie", which had an "angry grunge" sound and "aggressive" lyrics.[5] The Cranberries played the song on their appearance on the U.S. show Saturday Night Live in 1995 in a performance that British author Dave Thompson calls "one of the most powerful performances that the show has ever seen".[6]

AllMusic said the song "trivialized" the events of the Troubles, and that the "heavy rock trudge" of the song did not play to the band's strengths.[7]

Music video[edit]

"Zombie" was released with a music video in October 1994. The video was directed by Samuel Bayer, and produced by Doug Friedman and H.S.I. Productions.

In the video, Dolores O'Riordan is covered in gold makeup and appears in front of a cross with a group of boys also covered in gold makeup. The video also includes clips of children playing war games, and of British soldiers from the Argyll and Sutherland Highlanders (as evident from their thin red line tactical recognition flashes) on patrol in Northern Ireland during the Troubles.

The unsuspecting troops were told that their footage was to be included in a documentary about the day-to-day operations of various peace-keeping forces.[citation needed] The video was filmed in Belfast, Northern Ireland.

As of July 2018, the video has over 740 million views on YouTube.

Track listings[edit]

UK and European CD1 single

No.TitleWriter(s)Length
1."Zombie" (Album version)Dolores O'Riordan5:06
2."Away" (Previously unreleased; later included on the soundtrack of the 1995 film Clueless)Dolores O'Riordan2:39
3."I Don't Need" (Previously unreleased)
3:31

UK and European CD2 single

No.TitleLength
1."Zombie" (Album version)5:06
2."Waltzing Back" (Live at the Fleadh Festival, 11 June 1994)3:45
3."Linger" (Live at the Fleadh Festival, 11 June 1994)5:25

UK and European 7" single

No.TitleLength
1."Zombie" (Radio edit)4:10
2."Away" (Previously unreleased)2:39

US two-track promo CD (PRCD 6857-2)

No.TitleLength
1."Zombie" (Edit)3:52
2."Zombie"5:06

UK VHS single (PRCD 6857-2)

No.TitleLength
1."Zombie" (Video version)5:11

Charts and sales[edit]

Cover versions[edit]

  • In late 1994, a cover version by Spanish mákina group Ororo was released in conjunction with the original version. This version reached No. 1 in Spain and No. 16 in Austria.[55]
  • In 1995, a Eurodance cover version by Italian quartet A.D.A.M. featuring Amy reached No. 16 in the UK Singles Chart,[56] No. 65 in Australia,[57] No. 20 in France, No. 9 in Italy, and No. 35 in Belgium.[58]
  • In 2011, Christina Parie covered the song on The X Factor Australia. After her performance, the song re-entered the ARIA Charts Top 100 at No. 69.
  • Bad Wolves released a version on January 19, 2018.[59][60] O'Riordan had been scheduled to record vocals with the heavy metal group at the time of her death. The cover was released without her vocals as a tribute. Bad Wolves altered the lyrics, inserting a reference to drones and replacing "since 1916" with "in 2018".[60] The band's cover topped the US Billboard Mainstream Rock chart in May 2018 for three weeks. It peaked at No. 54 on the Hot 100.[61] In June 2018, at a concert in New York City, Bad Wolves donated $250,000 to O'Riordan's children.[62]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Dendle, Peter (2012). 2000-2010. McFarland. pp. 30–. ISBN 9780786492886. Retrieved 23 December 2012. 
  2. ^ "MTV Europe Music Award Winners 1994–2000". Billboard (November 10, 2001): 50. Retrieved 24 August 2013. 
  3. ^ "The Cranberries Announce New Acoustic Album Something Else, Share "Linger": Listen". Pitchfork. March 14, 2017. Retrieved March 23, 2017. 
  4. ^ "The tragedy that inspired Zombie - The Cranberries' biggest hit". BBC. Jan 16, 2016. Retrieved January 16, 2018. 
  5. ^ Buckley, Peter (2003-11-01). The Rough Guide to Rock: the definitive guide to more than 1200 artists and bands. Rough Guides. pp. 248–. ISBN 9781843531050. Retrieved 23 December 2012. 
  6. ^ Thompson, Dave (2000-11-01). Alternative Rock: The Best Musicians and Recordings. Hal Leonard Corporation. pp. 294–. ISBN 9780879306076. Retrieved 23 December 2012. 
  7. ^ Bogdanov, Vladimir; Woodstra, Chris; Erlewine, Stephen Thomas (2002). All Music Guide to Rock: The Definitive Guide to Rock, Pop, and Soul. Hal Leonard Corporation. pp. 263–. ISBN 9780879306533. Retrieved 23 December 2012. 
  8. ^ "Australian-charts.com – The Cranberries – Zombie". ARIA Top 50 Singles.
  9. ^ a b c d "Austriancharts.at – The Cranberries – Zombie" (in German). Ö3 Austria Top 40.
  10. ^ "Ultratop.be – The Cranberries – Zombie" (in Dutch). Ultratop 50.
  11. ^ "Ultratop.be – The Cranberries – Zombie" (in French). Ultratop 50.
  12. ^ "Top RPM Singles: Issue 2676." RPM. Library and Archives Canada.
  13. ^ "Hits of the World: Denmark (IFPI/Nielsen Marketing Research)". Billboard. Nielsen Business Media. 107 (6): 55. 11 February 1995. ISSN 0006-2510. 
  14. ^ "Hits of the World: Denmark (IFPI/Nielsen Marketing Research)". Billboard. Nielsen Business Media. 107 (7): 43. 18 February 1995. ISSN 0006-2510. 
  15. ^ a b c d e f g "Lescharts.com – The Cranberries – Zombie" (in French). Les classement single.
  16. ^ "Musicline.de – The Cranberries Single-Chartverfolgung" (in German). Media Control Charts. PhonoNet GmbH.
  17. ^ "Íslenski Listinn Topp 40 (03.11.1994-09.11.1994)" (PDF). Dagblaðið Vísir - Tónlist. Retrieved 2018-03-13. 
  18. ^ "The Irish Charts – Search Results – Zombie". Irish Singles Chart.
  19. ^ "Nederlandse Top 40 – week 52, 1994" (in Dutch). Dutch Top 40
  20. ^ "Dutchcharts.nl – The Cranberries – Zombie" (in Dutch). Single Top 100.
  21. ^ "Charts.org.nz – The Cranberries – Zombie". Top 40 Singles.
  22. ^ "Norwegiancharts.com – The Cranberries – Zombie". VG-lista.
  23. ^ "Official Scottish Singles Sales Chart Top 100". Official Charts Company.
  24. ^ "Swedishcharts.com – The Cranberries – Zombie". Singles Top 100.
  25. ^ "Swisscharts.com – The Cranberries – Zombie". Swiss Singles Chart.
  26. ^ "Official Singles Chart Top 100". Official Charts Company.
  27. ^ "The Cranberries Chart History (Radio Songs)". Billboard. Retrieved 16 May 2017.
  28. ^ "The Cranberries Chart History (Alternative Songs)". Billboard. Retrieved 16 May 2017.
  29. ^ "The Cranberries Chart History (Mainstream Rock)". Billboard. Retrieved 16 May 2017.
  30. ^ "The Cranberries Chart History (Pop Songs)". Billboard. Retrieved 16 May 2017.
  31. ^ "Archívum – Slágerlisták – MAHASZ" (in Hungarian). Single (track) Top 40 lista. Magyar Hanglemezkiadók Szövetsége. Retrieved 25 January 2018.
  32. ^ "Official Irish Singles Chart Top 50". Official Charts Company.
  33. ^ "Italiancharts.com – The Cranberries – Zombie". Top Digital Download.
  34. ^ "Official Scottish Singles Sales Chart Top 100". Official Charts Company.
  35. ^ "Spanishcharts.com – The Cranberries – Zombie" Canciones Top 50.
  36. ^ "Swisscharts.com – The Cranberries – Zombie". Swiss Singles Chart.
  37. ^ "Official Singles Chart Top 100". Official Charts Company.
  38. ^ "The Cranberries Chart History (Digital Songs)". Billboard. Retrieved 24 January 2018.
  39. ^ "The Cranberries Chart History (Hot Rock Songs)". Billboard. Retrieved 26 June 2018.
  40. ^ "The ARIA Australian Top 100 Singles 1994". Imgur.com (original document published by ARIA). Retrieved 17 July 2017. 
  41. ^ a b "The ARIA Australian Top 100 Singles 1995". Imgur.com (original document published by ARIA). Retrieved 17 July 2017. 
  42. ^ 1995 Austrian Singles Chart Austriancharts.at (Retrieved 20 April 2008)
  43. ^ 1995 Belgian (Flanders) Singles Chart Ultratop.be Archived 30 March 2014 at the Wayback Machine. (Retrieved 20 April 2008)
  44. ^ 1995 Belgian (Wallonia) Singles Chart Ultratop.be Archived 14 April 2014 at the Wayback Machine. (Retrieved 20 April 2008)
  45. ^ 1995 French Singles Chart Disqueenfrance.com Archived 7 March 2012 at the Wayback Machine. (Retrieved 30 January 2009)
  46. ^ "Single top 100 over 1995" (pdf) (in Dutch). Top40. Retrieved 19 April 2010. 
  47. ^ "End of Year Charts 1995". Recorded Music NZ. Retrieved December 3, 2017. 
  48. ^ 1995 Swiss Singles Chart Hitparade.ch Archived 23 March 2012 at the Wayback Machine. (Retrieved 20 April 2008)
  49. ^ "Austrian single certifications – Cranberries – Zombie" (in German). IFPI Austria.  Enter Cranberries in the field Interpret. Enter Zombie in the field Titel. Select single in the field Format. Click Suchen
  50. ^ "Canadian single certifications – Bad Wolves – Zombie". Music Canada. 
  51. ^ "Gold-/Platin-Datenbank (Cranberries; 'Zombie')" (in German). Bundesverband Musikindustrie. 
  52. ^ "Italian single certifications – Cranberries – Zombie" (in Italian). Federazione Industria Musicale Italiana. 
  53. ^ "British single certifications – Cranberries – Zombie". British Phonographic Industry.  Select singles in the Format field. Select Gold in the Certification field. Enter Zombie in the search field and then press Enter.
  54. ^ "American single certifications – Bad Wolves – Zombie". Recording Industry Association of America.  If necessary, click Advanced, then click Format, then select Single, then click SEARCH
  55. ^ "Hits of the World: Spain (IFPI/Nielsen Marketing Research)". Billboard. Nielsen Business Media. 107 (13): 48. 1 April 1995. ISSN 0006-2510. 
  56. ^ "Official Charts > A.D.A.M. feat. Amy". The Official UK Charts Company. Retrieved 17 July 2017. 
  57. ^ "The ARIA Australian Top 100 Singles Chart – Week Ending 03 Dec 1995". Imgur.com (original document published by ARIA). Retrieved 17 July 2017.  N.B. The HP column displays the highest peak reached.
  58. ^ "A.D.A.M. feat. Amy – Zombie (song)". Australian-charts.com. Retrieved 22 June 2010. 
  59. ^ Hill, John. "Bad Wolves release their cover of the Cranberries' "Zombie"". Loudwire. Retrieved 2018-01-19. 
  60. ^ a b "Hear BAD WOLVES' 'Zombie' Cover DOLORES O'RIORDAN Was Set To Appear On Before Death". Blabbermouth. Retrieved 2018-01-19. 
  61. ^ Rutherford, Kevin (2 May 2018). "Bad Wolves' Cover of The Cranberries' 'Zombie' Hits No. 1 on Mainstream Rock Songs Chart". Billboard. Retrieved 26 May 2018. 
  62. ^ https://www.billboard.com/biz/articles/8462004/bad-wolves-donate-250000-to-dolores-oriordans-children-after-zombie-cover

Bibliography[edit]

  • Fonseca A. J. «Zombie» (song) // Encyclopedia of the Zombie: The Walking Dead in Popular Culture and Myth: The Walking Dead in Popular Culture and Myth / eds. J. Pulliam, A. J. Fonseca. — ABC-CLIO, 2014. — 381 p. — ISBN 9781440803895. — ISBN 1440803897.