Robert Christgau: Dean of American Rock Critics

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Alice in Chains

  • Dirt [Columbia, 1992] B
  • Jar of Flies [Columbia, 1994] Neither

Consumer Guide Reviews:

Dirt [Columbia, 1992]
A heroin album, take it or leave it--"Junkhead" certainly isn't "ironic" and probably isn't "fictional" either. Crunch crunch crunch, riff riff riff--way harder, louder, and more metallic than Soundgarden ever will be. But the price of this power is that it's also uglier and stupider--the sound of hopeless craving. Sitting here with my "books and degrees" (well, degree), I very much doubt that if I "opened my mind," as resident sickman Layne Staley suggests, I'd be "doing" like him (er, the narrator of the song). I'll wait for my own man, thank you. B

Jar of Flies [Columbia, 1994] Neither