CLASSIC ALBUMS REVISITED: Alice In Chains’ Self-Titled Album Turns 25

In 1995, Alice In Chains had been feeling good on the success of their first #1 album on the charts, 1994’s Jar of Flies EP, the first EP to ever debut at #1. At the same time, they were in peril as a band, with issues stemming from Layne Staley’s addiction to heroin and other band turmoil. The band did not tour to support Jar of Flies as Layne was in rehab and they took part of 1995 off. The lost opportunities from this period, including a massive Metallica/Danzig/Suicidal Tendencies tour and a near-top-of-the bill split at Woodstock 1994 (which I am still mad about) almost killed the band. They broke up briefly too, according to Sean Kinney. Little did we know they were crafting a great album, Alice in Chains (Columbia), to wash all that pain and disappointment away for a brief moment in time.

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Watch a Vocal Coach Analyze Layne Staley Singing “Love, Hate, Love” with Alice In Chains

 

Voice teacher and YouTuber Beth Roars is back reacting to another video breaking down the singing techniques of rock and metal singers. In today’s episode, Beth is watching Alice In Chains live, and their late original frontman and all-time great singer Layne Staley singing “Love, Hate, Love”. Beth does several videos per week and they are all awesome! Check out her channel and subscribe to see all of her awesome videos. Continue reading

Alice In Chains Chill Masterpiece “Jar of Flies” Turns 25 Years Old

Alice In Chains was on top of the world in 1993, or so they thought. Behind the success of 1992’s Rock chart-topping Dirt (Columbia) album, the band toured the world, played Lollapalooza, had songs on major movie soundtracks and more. But there were some issues arising in their camp that would shape their immediate future. The bands came off a raucous summer of touring in 1993 to find themselves evicted from their communal house in Seattle. The band had recently fired bassist Mike Starr (RIP)who co-founded the band. After recruiting bassist Mike Inez (Ozzy Osbourne) the band had toured some with him, and recorded a few of those soundtrack pieces with him, but nothing more/ The band moved into London Bridge Studios, where countless huge rock and metal albums were made, and AIC had created all of their albums at that point. The band was going to spend a few days just jamming with acoustic guitars and see what stuck. What they came up with was so much more. When they finished writing, they had the bones of their epic EP Jar of Flies (Columbia) in the can. Continue reading

Static Tension – Ashes To Animation

There are some great ideas and passages on Static Tension’s Ashes To Animation (Buried By Sky). A marriage of Grunge, Alternative Rock, elements of Prog and a smattering of Stoner and Trouble’d Doom, the bands’ first full-length is an interesting proposition; a hotchpotch of ideas pulled in from The Doors to Metallica, but mainly operating a Progressive Grunge arena. Continue reading

GUEST POST: Greg and Rob Of Static Tension – Best Albums of 2018

With 2018 coming to a close, Greg Blachman and Rob Rom of Static Tension took some time to collectively reflect on their Top 10 releases of the year. The below are their picks, listed in no particular order. Continue reading

Spaceslug – Eye The Tide

If you want prolific, look no further than Polish psych fiends Spaceslug. This is their third album in four years, all graced by the greatest sleeve covers since Coheed & Cambria found the Milky Way and a monstrous roar that never gets tired. Continue reading

Alice In Chains Live At Hammerstein Ballroom

Opening the evening was Seattle band Walking Papers. Known more because of their regular members Duff McKagan and Barrett Martin, this is an act too good to miss. Even down a few guys and playing with some fill-in musicians, the band won over the anxious crowd with incredibly soulful rock music. No BS, no self-depreciation: just rock and proud to be rock. Amazing songs and performances, especially by frontman Jeff Angell, who is incredible. They have a recent EP out from 2018, and you should all go get it now.

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Cane Hill – Too Far Gone

Nu-Metal doesn’t half get some stick, to the point where it has become the laughing stock sub-genre within the metal scene. Riding the crest of a new (nu? – Ed) wave of this beaten, bloody pulp style of metal is Cane Hill, whose 2016 debut record Smile (Rise) proved to be very divisive – not dissimilar to the way Korn and Limp Bizkit were treated back in the early Nineties, and look how that turned out in the end. Continue reading

Alice In Chains’ Masterpiece ‘Dirt’ Turns 25

With the exception of Metallica, Pearl Jam, and Nirvana, no other band helped shape the tenor of mainstream 1990s rock and metal in terms of influence than Alice In Chains. Twenty-five years ago today the landmark album, Dirt was born via Columbia Records. Not only was it the bands commercial breakthrough, but it was their creative zenith in many ways, establishing them as a leader in the genre. Ghost Cult Magazine takes a look back at the album on the anniversary of its release. Continue reading

Invidia – As The Sun Sleeps

Invidia (the brainchild of In This Moment’s Travis Johnson and former Skinlab guitarist Brian Jackson) aims to be the sonic version of Sylvester Stallone’s Rocky, and makes no bones about it. The track ‘Step Up’ from their début As the Sun Sleeps (Steamhammer/Oblivion/SPV) spells this out quite literally, even lifting a line from the film that encompasses everything the band stands for: “It’s not about how hard you can hit; it’s about how hard you can get hit and keep moving forward.” Continue reading