ALICE IN CHAINS — Dirt (review)

ALICE IN CHAINS — Dirt album cover Album · 1992 · Alternative Metal Buy this album from MMA partners
5/5 ·
Going down the steps on a white line straight to nowhere. Those words were repeated over and over in Real Thing, the closer of Facelift, and AIC's second album documents the repercussions. This is one of the heaviest albums I've heard, not necessarily because of the music but the subject matter which is mostly mortality and addiction.

But this is not just a lyrics album. The opener Them Bones comes in with a crushing 7/8 riff and a torching Layne Staley roar, Sickman has one of the most disturbing verse riffs I can think of, Rain When I Die has a great atmospheric build-up, great riffs in this song, great riffs in that song... not to mention such classics as Rooster, Down in a Hole and Would? with its iconic bass riff. And all of the album is crowned by the gloriously haunting vocal harmonies by Staley and Jerry Cantrell.

Almost all of the debut album Facelift was composed by Jerry Cantrell with Layne Staley contributing much of the lyrics, but on this album the composer in Staley really steps up. He's the driving force behind the five song drug saga from Junkhead to Angry Chair (including Cantrell's hidden interlude Iron Gland, featuring the howling of Slayer's Tom Araya), with the addiction escalating from Junkhead's "we are an elite race of our own, the stoners junkies and freaks" to Angry Chair's "saw my reflection and cried, so little hope that I died". Hugely powerful and tragic stuff, delivered with the authority of a genuine dope fiend.

A defining grunge and 90s heavy metal album, essential to say the least.
Share this review

Review Comments

Post a public comment below | Send private message to the reviewer
Please login to post a shout
No shouts posted yet. Be the first member to do so above!


Rating by members, ranked by custom algorithm
Albums with 30 ratings and more
Master of Puppets Thrash Metal
Buy this album from our partners
Paranoid Heavy Metal
Buy this album from our partners
Moving Pictures Hard Rock
Buy this album from our partners
Powerslave NWoBHM
Buy this album from our partners
Led Zeppelin IV Hard Rock
Buy this album from our partners

New Metal Artists

New Metal Releases

The Shape Of Everything Metal Related
Buy this album from MMA partners
Lost Faith Metalcore
Buy this album from MMA partners
Daily Reminders Hardcore Punk
Buy this album from MMA partners
Pike 304 - Rainbow Bridge Heavy Alternative Rock
Buy this album from MMA partners
Hell Deathcore
Buy this album from MMA partners
More new releases

New Metal Online Videos

SOM - Prayers (Official Video)
Tupan· 112 minutes ago
More videos

New MMA Metal Forum Topics

More in the forums

New Site interactions


Latest Metal News


More in the forums

Social Media

Follow us