Music » Critics' Choices

Alice in Chains

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When early Alice in Chains single "Man in the Box" hit radio some 16 years ago, the box that late singer Layne Staley was trapped in was heroin. His 2002 speedball OD death seemed likely to put the kibosh on the fashion-challenged band that Staley and guitarist Jerry Cantrell co-founded in 1987. But let's get real: The market can handle only so many live and best-of packages, and mortgages don't pay themselves. Cantrell's two solo albums haven't come close to moving units the way Dirt did, so, like Slint and Dinosaur Jr., Alice in Chains is back (with William DuVall, of Comes With the Fall, on hand to channel Staley's addict-diary wailing) to cash in on '90s nostalgia. You game? — Ray Cummings

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