Alice in Chains launched their third full-length album on Nov. 7, 1995. The self-titled effort marks the band’s closing album with vocalist Layne Staley, who handed away in 2002.
The LP debuted at No. 1 on the Billboard album chart and has offered greater than 3 million copies, spawning the singles “Grind,” “Heaven Beside You,” “Over Now” and “Once more.”
The hassle expands on the signature sound Alice in Chains captured on their 1992 album Dust, together with down-tuned heavy guitars, chilling vocal harmonies and lyrics specializing in despair, isolation and loss of life. It’s runs the gamut from tremendous heavy songs like “Grind” and “Head Creeps” to epic compositions like “Frogs” and fan favourite “Sludge Manufacturing facility,” to the hauntingly stunning tune “Over Now.” The album continues the band’s evolution with extra melodic and moody acoustic sounds they tapped into on their Jar of Flies EP, which is blended with a ton of dissonance with tremendous heavy guitar riffs from Jerry Cantrell.
Alice in Chains, “Grind” Music Video
Alice in Chains had been on a self-imposed hiatus in late 1994, as Layne Staley’s heroin use was sporting on the band. Staley used the downtime to crew up with the supergroup Mad Season, with Pearl Jam guitarist Mike McCready, late-bassist John Baker Saunders and Screaming Tress drummer Barrett Martin. They launched their lone effort, Above, in March of 1995.
The subsequent month Alice in Chains started recording in Unhealthy Animals Studio in Seattle with producer Toby Wright. Staley’s heroin use continued by the periods. In Greg Prado’s guide Grunge Is Dead, Jerry Cantrell mentioned, “It was a very painful session as a result of it took so lengthy. It was horrifying to see Layne in that situation. But when he was cognizant, he was the sweetest, bright-eyed man you’d ever need to meet. To be in a gathering with him and have him go to sleep in entrance of you was guy-wrenching.”
Consequently, Jerry Cantrell took on massive portion of the songwriting and vocals on the trouble on tracks like “Heaven Beside You,” “Grind” — which options the chilling opening line, “Within the darkest gap, you would be nicely suggested / To not plan my funeral ‘fore the physique dies, yeah” — and “Over Now.” “Heaven Beside You” addresses Cantrell’s break-up of his girlfriend of seven years. Within the liners notes to the band’s 1999 field set Music Financial institution, Canrtell mentioned the tune is “one other try to reconcile the truth that my life and paths are tearing me aside from the particular person I like.”
Alice in Chains, “Heaven Beside You” Music Video
Alice in Chains by no means absolutely toured behind their self-titled album. They carried out on MTV Unplugged in April of 1996 and opened for Kiss for 4 reveals that summer time earlier than Staley overdosed on heroin. He recovered however the band was as soon as once more compelled to take a break. Sadly, Staley privately battled his heroin addition for the remainder of his life till he handed away in 2002.
The group acquired Grammy nominations in 1996 and 1997 for “Grind” and “Once more,” however misplaced each occasions to Pearl Jam’s “Spin the Black Circle” and Smashing Pumpkins “Bullet With Butterfly Wings,” respectively. The band was additionally nominated for the MTV Video Music Award for Greatest Laborious Rock Video for “Once more” in 1996, dropping to Metallica’s clip for “Till It Sleeps.”
Alice in Chains’ self-titled album is somber and brooding work that captures their mid-90s grunge sound and went on to affect a technology of followers and musicians. The hassle marks an finish to an period and is the final time album to function Layne Staley’s distinctive and highly effective voice.
It could be 14 years earlier than followers would get a brand new Alice in Chains album. The band launched Black Offers Method to Blue in 2009 with new singer William DuVall.