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  • I don’t even want to know how many times I’ve listened to this album, all the way through, and then when it was over played it again. This was the first I ever heard Alice in Chains (thanks to my cousin playing “Rooster” for me) and I immediately put the album on my NEED TO BUY list back in early 1994. Being forbidden MTV by my parents and really having no previous interest in radio this album sparked my love of music into a virtual inferno! This was the first cd I ever bought, and for that alone I love it. But all the songs are a powerful offspring of potent lyrics and chillingly talented musicians. Jerry Cantrell’s playing is surreal and Layne Staley’s singing is startling enough to puncture the soul. The first song “Them Bones” is one of my favorites, highly introspective. The second, “Dam That River” is an excellent play on words. “Rain When I Die” is haunting enough to put on repeat itself. “Down In A Hole” is a sad, self-aware song that screams for the memorization of its lyrics and pertinence when just a little bit down. “Sickman” took me awhile to like, (maybe 3 seconds as opposed to the instantaneous reaction I had to the previous 4 songs) but is now a staple of my music listening experience. “Rooster” well, this is what started it all for me. I don’t think I’ll ever get sick of listening to this song and I’ve even been known to tell people to shut the hell up while it’s playing on the radio. “Junk Head” is blatantly about drug use and about criticising things and people alike without bothering to find out both sides. “Dirt” the song for which the album is named has a really crazy sound to it and is like a mid-album spike into a harder tone. “God Smack” is another song that took me a while to get used to but which I now love. The untitled screams and shouts on the tenth track always seemed to me like a short eavesdropping on the denizens of hell. “Hate To Feel” is a great anti-depressant when you feel alone, because it’s quite obvious that Layne Staley has felt the futility of depression. “Angry Chair” is another dark song, presumably dealing with apathy. Last, but not least, is “Would?” which has had fans of Alice in Chains asking themselves “what the hell is this about?” ever since it first got airtime on the radio, but not without them latching onto it as a fan favorite. Now of course no music album is worth anything if it doesn’t entertain, and whether you receive any message from the lyrics or not Dirt will definitely do that. An essential album for any child of the 1990’s from one of the best bands to come on the scene during that decade. One of, if not the best band out of Seattle. If you like this check out their other albums “Facelift” (their first album), “Sap” (really short), “Jar of Flies”, “Alice in Chains” (three-legged dog on the album cover), and their “Unplugged” album.

    Posted on December 3, 2009