Alice in Chains

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Jerry Cantrell, William DuVall, Mike Inez and Sean Kinney of Alice in Chains

Alice in Chains (often abbreviated as AIC) is an American rock band from Seattle, Washington, formed in 1987 by guitarist and vocalist Jerry Cantrell and drummer Sean Kinney, who later recruited bassist Mike Starr and lead vocalist Layne Staley. Starr was replaced by Mike Inez in 1993. William DuVall joined the band in 2006 as co-lead vocalist and rhythm guitarist, replacing Staley, who died in 2002. The band took its name from Staley's previous group, the glam metal band Alice N' Chains.

Often associated with grunge music, Alice in Chains' sound incorporates heavy metal elements. The band is known for its distinctive vocal style, which often included the harmonized vocals between Staley and Cantrell



"We Die Young"[edit]

  • "Down, down, down you're rollin'/Watch the blood float in the muddy sewer/Take another hit/And bury your brother"
  • "Another alley trip/Bullet seek the place to bend you over/Then you got hit/And you should of known better/Faster we run/And we die young"

"Man in the Box"[edit]

  • "I'm the man in the box/Buried in my shit/Won't you come and save me?/Save me"
  • "Fear in my eyes (can you sow them shut?)/Jesus Christ (deny your maker)/He who tries (will be wasted)/Fear in my eyes (now you told me)"
  • "I'm the dog who gets beat/Shove my nose in shit"

"Sea of Sorrow"[edit]

  • "Mind, of destructive taste/I stroll amongst the waste/That was your heart/Lost in the dark/Call off the chase"
  • "Walls of thought, strong and high/As my castle crumbles with time/I think of you/Oh, yes I do/Such a crime"
  • "I live tomorrow/You I'll not follow/As you wallow/In a sea of sorrow"

"Bleed the Freak"[edit]

  • "These stand for me/Name your god and bleed the freak/I'd like to see/How you all would bleed for me"


"Got Me Wrong"[edit]

  • "Yeah, it goes away/All of this and more of nothing in my life/No colored clay/Individuality not safe"
  • "As of now I bet you've got me wrong/So unsure you run from something strong"


"Them Bones"[edit]

  • "I believe them bones are me/Some say we're born into the grave/I feel so alone, gonna end up a/Big ol' pile a them bones"
  • "Dust rise right on over my time/Empty fossil of the new scene/I feel so alone, gonna end up a/Big hole pile a them bones"

"Dam that River"[edit]

  • "I broke you in the canyon/I drowned you in the lake/You a snake that I would trample/Only thing I'd not embrace"
  • "Oh, you couldn't dam that river/And maybe I don't give a damn anyway/So you couldn't dam that river/And it washed me so far away"
  • "I pushed and then you stumbled/I kicked you in the face/You stare at me so hollow/Got to keep that killin' pace"

"Down in a Hole"[edit]

  • "Bury me softly in this womb/I give this part of me for you/Sand rains down and here I sit/Holding rare flowers/In a tomb... in Bloom"
  • "Down in a hole and I don't know if I can be saved/I sing my heart out decorated like a grave/You don't understand who they thought I was supposed to be/Look at me now I'm a man who won't let himself be"
  • "Down in a hole, losing my soul/Down in a hole, losing control/I'd like to fly,/But my wings have been so denied"


  • "Ain't found a way to kill me yet/Eyes burn with stinging sweat/Seems every path leads me to nowhere/Wife and kids, household pet/Army green was no safe bet/The bullets scream to me from somewhere"
  • "Here they come to snuff the rooster/Ah yeah, yeah/Yeah, here come the rooster, yeah/You know he ain't gonna die/No, no, no, you know he ain't gonna die"
  • "Walkin' tall machine gun man/They spit on me in my home land/Gloria sent me pictures of my boy/Got my pills 'gainst mosquito death/My buddy's breathin' his dyin' breath/Oh god please won't you help me make it through"

"Hate to Feel"[edit]

  • "Stare at me with empty eyes and/Point your words at me/Mirror on the wall will show you/What you're scared to see"

"Angry Chair"[edit]

  • "Sitting on an angry chair/Angry walls that steal the air/Stomach hurts and I don't care/What do I see across the way, hey/See myself molded in clay, oh/Stares at me, yeah I'm afraid, hey/Changing the shape of his face, oh yeah"
  • "I don't mind, yeah/I don't mind, I-I-I/I don't mind, yeah/I don't mind, I-I-I/Lost my mind, yeah/But I don't mind, I-I-I/Can't find it anywhere/I don't mind"


  • "Into the flood again/Same old trip it was back then/So I made a big mistake/Try to see it once my way"
  • "Drifting body, its sole exertion/Flying, not yet quite the notion"
  • "Am I wrong?/Have I run too far to get home/Have I gone?/Left you here alone/If I would, could you?"

Jar of Flies[edit]


  • "We chase misprinted lies/We face the path of time/And yet I fight/And yet I fight/This battle all alone/No one to cry to/No place to call home"

"I Stay Away"[edit]

  • "Why you act crazy/Not an act maybe/So close a lady/Shifty eyes shady"
  • "Why you act frightened/I am enlightened/Your weakness builds me/So someday you'll see"

"No Excuses"[edit]

  • "It's alright/There comes a time/Got no patience to search/For peace of mind/Layin' low/Want to take it slow/No more hiding or/Disguising truths I've sold"
  • "Everyday it's something/Hits me all so cold/Find me sittin' by myself/No excuses, then I know"
  • "It's okay/Had a bad day/Hands are bruised from/Breaking rocks all day/Drained and blue/I bleed for you/You think it's funny, well/You're drowning in it too"
  • "Yeah, it's fine/We'll walk down the line/Leave our rain, a cold/Trade for warm sunshine/You my friend/I will defend/And if we change, well I love you anyway"

"Don't Follow"[edit]

  • "Hey, I ain't never coming home/Hey, I'll just wander my own road/Hey-hey, I can't meet you here tomorrow - no, no/Say goodbye don't follow/Misery so hollow"
  • "Well I forgot my woman, lost my friends/Things I've done and where I've been/Sleep in sweat - the mirror's cold/Seen my face? It's growin' old/Scared to death, no reason why/Do whatever to get me by/Think about the things I've said/Read the page its cold and dead"

Alice in Chains[edit]


  • "Come the morning light/It's a see-through show/What you may have heard and/What you think you know"

"Heaven Beside You"[edit]

  • "Be what you wanna be/See what you came to see/Been what you wanna be/I don't like what I see"
  • "Like the coldest winter will/Heaven beside you... Hell within/And you think you have it still, heaven inside you"


  • "Hey, let them do it again, yeah/Hey, you said you were my friend/Hey, turn me upside down, Oh/Hey, feelin' so down"

"Over Now"[edit]

  • "You know its been on my mind/Could you stand right there/Look me straight in the eye and say/That it's over now"

Black Gives Way to Blue[edit]

"Check My Brain"[edit]

  • "So I found myself in the sun, oh yeah/A hell of a place to end a run, oh yeah/California, I'm fine/Somebody check my brain/California's all right/Somebody check my brain"
  • "I walk these streets, I creep and I fall, oh yeah/When she sang I answered the call, oh yeah"

"Your Decision"[edit]

  • "Time to change has come and gone/Watched your fears become your god/It's your decision"
  • "You feed the fire that burned us all/When you lie/To feel the pain that spurs you on/Black inside"

"A Looking in View"[edit]

  • "Hear footsteps creak the floor/The shadows give away/Someone outside the door/Won't let 'em in"
  • "These things I hate in you/Also reflect it seems/Distortion laced with spite/Takes you out of me"
  • "A looking in view too long on the outside/Desperate plans make sense in a low life/Lie/A looking in view too long on the outside/Desperate plans make sense in a low life/Lie/It's why you never tell me/Whatever's on your mind"

"Lesson Learned"[edit]

  • "Just another lesson learned/Wear a scar, abhore repeating/Take a simple fateful turn/Opened up to stop the bleeding"
  • "Nowhere to buy in/Most of us hiding/Others are shining"

"Black Gives Way to Blue"[edit]

  • "I don't wanna feel no more/It's easier to keep falling/Imitations are pale/Emptiness of tomorrows/Haunted by your ghost"
  • "Lay down, black gives way to blue/Lay down, I'll remember you"

The Devil Put Dinosaurs Here[edit]


  • "Hollow as a mountain/All tunneled and drilled below/Hollow as a mountain/Crowned with a cold, blue sky"
  • "Silence! So loud! Silence!/I can't tell my up from down"


  • "What makes you want to carve your initials in me?"
  • "Find me distant/Outwardly rough/Obscene"
  • "Cold/Dry/Stone"


  • "Every time I listen/Voices in my head/Everybody listen/Does yours say what mine says"
  • "Calling out their names/Faces, uniforms I've worn/And all that is gone/Always climbing/To fall down again"

"Phantom Limb"[edit]

  • "...this ain't over/My regrets are many, true/Still so much worse lies ahead for you"
  • "Gonna wear you like a second skin/I'll haunt you like a phantom limb"

"The Devil Put Dinosaurs Here"[edit]

  • "The devil put dinosaurs here/Jesus don't like a queer/The devil put dinosaurs here/No problem with faith just fear"

Rainier Fog[edit]

"The One You Know"[edit]

  • "Tell me, does it matter/If I'm still here, or I'm gone?/Shifting to the after/An impostor, so disowned"
  • "Are you surprised black water flows/From wells run dry?/I'm not the one you know"

"So Far Under"[edit]

  • "The trap is time and no one gets off of this ride alive"
  • "So far under/Far I've never fell/Now forever dwell/So far under"
  • "So far under/Too much pain to tell/And now I'm ripped asunder/"So far under"

"Never Fade"[edit]

  • "My inner voice/Seems to want me dead/Only choice/Manage down the trail I’ve lead"
  • "Never far away away I always see you/When it all goes dark you light my way through"


  • "Friends Don't Let Friends Get Friends Haircuts" - This was written on Mike Inez's bass during the band's set on Unplugged. It was in reference to the members of Metallica, who were sitting in the audience. Metallica had recently gotten haircuts to coincide with the release of their album Load and many saw this as the band "selling out."