Cranes are a shoegaze/dream pop group fronted by Alison Shaw and formed in 1986. They were originally based on the south coast of England in Portsmouth.
The band released their first album on vinyl, Self Non Self in July 1989. The intensity of that album garnered very good reviews and caught the attention of John Peel, who picked up on the album right away, with the group recording a session for him in the album's first week of release. Shortly afterwards they signed to the label Dedicated (which also became home to Spiritualized and Beth Orton) and went on to record their EP "Espero" in 1990, with the album "Wings of Joy" following a year later. The release of "Wings of Joy" caught the attention of Robert Smith of The Cure who picked the Cranes to open for them on their world tour in 1992. They then went on to record the albums "Forever" (1993), "Loved" (1994), "La Tragedie d'Oreste et Electre" (1995), and "Population Four" (1997).
After a 4 year break, Cranes re-emerged on their own independent label Dadaphonic to release "Future Songs" (2001) and "Particles & Waves" (2004), which saw the band heading in a more electronic direction while retaining the trademark sound of previous releases. In January 2007 the band released a download only album, "Live at Amsterdam Paradiso," originally recorded in 1991. The show captures the darker, heavier days of the early Cranes and is available only via www.dadaphonic.co.uk.
In 2008 Cranes albums "Wings of Joy', 'Forever' and 'Loved' were re-issued by Cherry Red Records, www.cherryred.co.uk as part of their series of 'influential artists' re-releases.
In October 2008 Cranes released their self titled album 'Cranes'.