On September 29th, Alice in Chains will release Black Gives Way to Blue, its first album of new material in 14 years and the band’s first recording sans late vocalist Layne Staley. In 2005, after a three-year hiatus following Staley’s tragic death, surviving Alice members Jerry Cantrell, Mike Inez, and Sean Kinney recruited Comes with the Fall vocalist William DuVall to front the band on a reunion tour. Despite a series of kick ass shows, there were mixed emotions when word leaked out in 2008 that Alice was returning to the studio. While some fans felt a new disc was long overdue, others were unsure of how the band would fare after so many years away, particularly without Staley’s inimitable voice at the forefront.
Well, as of this morning, fans can finally get a taste of what to expect from this incarnation of Alice in Chains on its upcoming album. The band’s official site is offering a free download of “A Looking In View”, a track off Black Gives Way to Blue, as well as an accompanying music video. And judging by this song, Alice fans have little to worry about and much reason to be enthused. The dead-slow rock, crunching guitars, and harmonies that once proved that metal could be melodic are all there.
So, what do you think?