Alice in Chains are a Seattle-based rock band. They rose to international fame in the early 1990s as part of the ‘grunge’ movement. They are one of the most critically and commercially acclaimed acts of the 90s. Their first 3 studio albums all went multi-platinum and they have received 8 grammy noms for Best Hard Rock performance (sadly, never winning once).
Their unique sound comes from the harmonized vocals of co-founders Layne Staley and Jerry Cantrell, as showcased in some of their biggest songs like No Excuses from Jar of Flies; Angry Chair from Dirt and Again from Alice in Chains. Cantrell also serves as the primary songwriter and guitarist of the band.
The band was never restricted to grunge. Cantrell believes it to be heavy metal; and indeed a lot of modern heavy metal bands cite Alice in Chains as an influence, including Metallica for Death Magnetic.
The band’s frontman, Layne Staley, suffered throughout his life from depression and substance abuse, which eventually took his life in 2002. It was a huge blow to the industry and many prominent bands recorded songs as odes to Staley.
After extended inactivity, the band recruited William DuVall to replace Staley and have released two successful studio albums with him.