Salvation

Artist: The Cranberries
Released on: To The Faithful Departed (Track #2)
Song Length: 2:24

Credit information

Music by N. Hogan & D. O’Riordan.
Lyrics by D. O’Riordan.
Produced by Bruce Fairbairn and The Cranberries.
Engineered and Mixed by Mike Plotnikoff.
Recorded in November, December 1995 in Dublin, Ireland at Windmill Lane Studios.
Orchestration written and arranged by Michael Kamen.
Horn section performed by Richie Buckley (Tenor Sax), Michael Buckley (Baritone Sax) and Bruce Fairbairn (Trumpet), additional percussion by Randy Raine-Reusche.
Published by Island Music Ltd.

Lyrics

To all those people doing lines, don’t do it, don’t do it
Inject your soul with liberty, it’s free, it’s free
To all the kids with heroin eyes, don’t do it, don’t do it
Cause it’s not not what it seems
No no it’s not not what it seems

Salvation, salvation, salvation is free
Salvation, salvation, salvation is free
Ha-a-a, ha-a-a, ha-a-a, ha-a-a
Ha-a-a, ha-a-a, ha-a-a, ha-a-a
Ha-a-a, ha-a-a, ha-a-a, ha-a-a
Ha-a-a, ha-a-a, ha-a

Tu lu lu lu lu lu lu lu
Lu lu lu lu
Tu lu lu lu lu lu lu lu lu lu lu lu-u

To all the parents with sleepless nights (sleepless nights)
Tie your kids on to their beds, clean their heads
To all the kids with heroin eyes (heroin eyes), don’t do it (heroin eyes), don’t do it (no no)
Because it’s not not what it seems
No no it’s not not what it seems

Salvation, salvation, salvation is free
Salvation, salvation, salvation is free

Salvation, salvation, salvation is free
Salvation, salvation, salvation is free
Ha-a-a, ha-a-a, ha-a-a, ha-a-a
Ha-a-a, ha-a-a, ha-a-a, ha-a-a
Ha-a-a, ha-a-a, ha-a-a, ha-a-a
Ha-a-a, ha-a-a, ha-a

Meaning

In 1996, in an article written by Jayne Margetts, Fergal said about Salvation: “The song Salvation is a glance at drug addiction. […] If you look around you see so much of it going on day-to-day, even in Limerick, which is quite a small town. You walk around the place and go to pubs at night and you see people drinking water because they’re on ecstacy or whatever. It’s quite scary to see that. I mean no matter how much you travel, and how much you see, nothing can prepare you for that kind of thing. You see your brother’s friends who are 16-year-old and they’re totally out of it. It’s scary to see how it’s taken over the whole world. “I dunno, […] you meet so many people who have been through all that and they look back and they say ‘what’s the point’? […] People learn the hard way I suppose. It’s just unfortunate that some people don’t survive it.

In November 2002, Fergal explained: “(It was an anti-drug song) when Ecstasy was talking over the world. Some people picked it up wrong as a preachy thing: ‘Don’t do it, don’t do it’, like ‘Who’s she to tell me don’t do it’, and it wasn’t like that, she was kinda talking to herself really. ‘Cos we’d been on tour with lots of different bands and you see different things and hear the stories of people fucking themselves up. It’s something we’ve always been wary of and kept an eye on, and we just kind of steer away from that, ‘cos it’s the old cliché of you and up in Betty Ford at the end of it – What’s the point?” (Hot Press, 2002)

Dolores: “It’s not so much like an anti-drug song. It’s kind of anti- the idea of becoming totally controlled by anything, any substance at all, because I know what’s it’s like. And it wasn’t a nice experience and it didn’t get me anywhere. It just confused me more.
[…] Oh no, I didn’t try heroin. I was just trying to find the answer in getting out of it, whether it was drinking or whatever. I’m not going to elaborate. But it just, basically, any substances don’t really help. Reality is reality, and unfortunately, no how much you go away, you come back, and it’s always here.” (MTV, 1996)

Notes

Other releases

  • Salvation (live at Milton Keynes, UK, 1995)
    • Free To Decide CD single (Australia, France, Japan & UK), 1996
    • Free To Decide Promo single (UK), 1996
  • Salvation (live at Grosse Freiheit, Germany, 1999) [2:38], Animal Instinct CD single (Canada, Germany, Japan & UK), 1999
  • Salvation (live in Stockholm, Sweden, 2002), Stars The Best Of 1992-2002, 2002
  • Salvation (live at The Point, Dublin, Ireland, 1995) [2:22], Analyse Free CD packed with the Italian magazine Tutto (Italy), 2001
  • Salvation (live in Nantes, 2010), Live 2010, 2010
  • Salvation (live in Madrid, 2010)
    • Live 2010
    • Roses 2 CD Deluxe Edition, 2012
  • Salvation (live in Barcelona, 2010), Live 2010, 2010
  • Salvation (live in Milano, 2010), Live 2010, 2010
  • Salvation (live in Lyon, 2010), Live 2010, 2010
  • Salvation (live in Paris, 2010), Live 2010, 2010
  • Salvation (live in Amsterdam, 2010), Live 2010, 2010
  • Salvation (live in Berlin, 2010), Live 2010, 2010
  • Salvation (live in London, 2010), Live 2010, 2010
  • Salvation (live at The Hammersmith Apollo, London, UK, 2012) [3:01], Live 2012, 2012
  • Salvation (live at Zénith, Caen, France, 2012) [2:46], Live 2012, 2012

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