Celebrating Alice in Chains Self-Titled Album On Its Anniversary
Alice in Chains’ self-titled, third studio album was also known as the “tripod” or “three-legged dog” album (due to a three-legged dog on the album cover).
The band released it on this day, November 7, back in 1995, via Columbia Records. Toby Wright produced Alice in Chains. This would be the band’s first full-length studio album to feature bassist Mike Inez and their last to feature original lead vocalist Layne Staley. The album debuted at number one on the Billboard 200 chart with first-week sales of 189,000 copies. The album has since become certified double platinum by the RIAA. It sold over three million copies worldwide.
Alice in Chains was the follow-up to the band’s highly successful sophomore album Dirt (1992). It continued the band’s exploration of dark and introspective themes such as drug addiction, depression, broken relationships, and internal tensions within the band. The music on the album is more melodic and textured than their previous work with emphasis on acoustic guitars.
Alice in Chains – “Heaven Beside You” (Official Video)
After the release of their previous album Jar of Flies (1994), AIC vocalist Layne Staley entered rehab for heroin addiction. The band was scheduled to tour during the summer of 1994 with Metallica, Suicidal Tendencies, Danzig and Fight, but while in rehearsal for the tour, Staley began using again.
The remaining band members canceled all scheduled dates one day before the tour was supposed to start. The band went on hiatus, and Candlebox replaced them on the tour.
While on hiatus, Staley joined the group Mad Season with Mike McCready & Barrett Martin. AIC guitarist Jerry Cantrell began working on material that was originally intended for a solo album.
However, in early 1995, Cantrell, Inez, and drummer Sean Kinney started jamming on the material and started to develop it into an Alice in Chains record. They eventually brought Layne Staley back into the fold by the spring of ’95.
Alice in Chains – “Grind” (Official Video)
The album’s lead single, “Grind,” was a Top 10 hit on the Billboard Mainstream Rock chart. The album also spawned the hit singles “Heaven Beside You” and “Again.” It received two Grammy Award nominaions, including Best Hard Rock Performance for “Grind” and “Again.”
Alice in Chains is one of the more influential grunge albums of all time. It is a powerful and moving album that showcases the band’s unique blend of heavy riffs, dark lyrics, and soaring melodies.
I will be playing selections from the album on my show today between 3p & 7p on WMMR! Hope you can tune in! Happy Anniversary Alice in Chains!