The devil put Alice In Chains here, and he did two times. First time, when the hard rock of the eighties reached the point of no return, imploding on itself under layers of hairspray, processed sounds and studio gimmicks; Alice In Chains, and their pals from Seattle, arrived on the scene with organic guitar sounds that were nowhere to be heard but on those old seventies, rock and punk records, forgotten on some dusty shelves, and, above all, with a true hunger and the sense of danger that rock ’n’ roll had totally lost. Second time, reborn in the actual millennium, with the general situation for mainstream rock being so desperate that we would kill for some new Trixter record; Alice In Chains appear like uncorrupted saviours.
The secret is all in the ‘we do what we like’ attitude of Jerry Cantrell, the great rock survivor, the riff maker extraordinaire, the leader of a band that sold millions, and now the outsider of a show biz reigned by Snooki and Jwoww, but, still the winner in the end. The fact that ‘The Devil Put Dinosaurs Here’ (what a great title!) did so incredibly well, going straight to number two of the Billboard Charts, on the wings of a leading single, ‘Stone’, which is as stoner and heavy as the title suggests, well, it adds kudos to the legacy of a band treasured by millions of fans worldwide.
Their second, still successful coming proves that real rock is still a force to reckon with; and this is even more important than the fact that the album is made of superb music, in the evolving groove of old school AIC. What really makes this collection of new tunes worth to stand alongside its illustrious predecessors, like ‘Facelift’ or ‘Dirt’, it’s the palpable will of the band to explore new sides of their musical spectrum; this translates in an added heaviness, rivalling the intensity of Black Sabbath, and an even more amplified sensibility for memorable tunes. As Townshend wrote, long live rock!
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