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Last Active 07-17-14 9:56 am
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Alice In Chains Ranked

Why the heck not? I'm just looking for an excuse not to get any real work done.
1Alice in Chains
Jar of Flies


Let's start this off with a controversial choice. While most people would probably pick Dirt as the best AiC album, it's basically a tie and my vote goes to JoF because: a). Even given the fact that it's an EP, there are basically zero skippable songs on JoF; 2). The band experiments wildly (by their standards) with Jazz and String sections and harmonicas and instrumentals, and all of their experiments are pretty damn successful. 3). Compositionally speaking, the band is at the height of their powers. This entire album was written and recorded in a week. Most bands can't put out material this strong over the course of their careers.
2Alice in Chains
Dirt


Bleak, yet beautiful. Stifling, yet cathartic. Brutally fatalistic, yet somehow hopeful. The album is thematically and musically coherent and consistent without ever straying in the direction of monotony. A rightful classic.
3Alice in Chains
Facelift


This was the album that was supposed to put grunge on the map because it's not REALLY a grunge album you see. The first half of the album is grungy of course, but the latter half shows traces of a band still semi-attached to its hair/funk-metal roots. This album probably defines the pre-Nirvana early '90s and the shifting musical landscape better than anything else you can think of. Also, most of it is catchy as hell.
4Alice in Chains
Black Gives Way to Blue


This is for all intents and purposes the average Alice in Chains album. Or maybe it's the median AiC album. I'm not sure, my statistics is rusty. But either way, it's incredibly consistent, hooky, heavy and harmony-y. It's everything you'd expect and want an AiC album to be. The fact that so many supposed fans of the band can't look past the fact that the lead singer isn't a dead white-guy makes me sad. All the racist necrophiliacs in the world are missing out.
5Alice in Chains
Sap


There are only 4 songs to choose from here ("Love Song" doesn't count), but this EP is basically a cool breeze on a sweltering day; it's surprising, refreshing, and gone too soon.
6Alice in Chains
Alice in Chains


Look, it's not a terrible album, but...it's sub-standard by AiC's standards. The constituent parts don't gell as well as they once did. Staley is audibly a shadow of his former self. A lot of the songs have good ideas but then kind of meander aimlessly, which is not the sort of thing that Alice in Chains' songs are supposed to do. Sure, there are plenty of good songs here, but the album as a whole lacks the energy of Facelift, the inspiration of Dirt and JoF, or the pinpoint focus of Black Gives Way to Blue, which is why it's at the bottom of this list.
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