I am a huge Alice In Chains fan, and have traveled the country several times in the past few years to see Jerry Cantrell perform live. When I heard they were coming to my home town to play a show, I did everything it took to get tickets, and then had to patiently wait eight weeks to see them live. :( That my friend is hard to do when you love a band as much as I love Alice In Chains, but the eight weeks eventually passed and I got my chance to see them rock out last night!
The band took the stage a little after 10pm, and they started the show with an amazing version of “Again.” Jerry was on fire, William sounded great on lead vocals (he is definitely no Layne Staley, but sounded awesome nonetheless), and Sean and Mike were spot on with drums and bass. After the band finished the song Again, they played incredible versions of “Bleed The Freak,” “Grind,” “It Ain’t Like That,” “Junkhead,” “Nutshell,” (my personal favorite!) “Them Bones,” “Dam That River,” and “Rain When I Die.”
After they finished up Rain When I Die, they left the stage to allow the roadies to setup the stage for their acoustic “unplugged” set. When they eventually reappeared, they had acoustic guitars in hand, and proceeded to play unplugged versions of “Don’t Follow,” “Brother,” “Killer Is Me,” “No Excuses,” “Got me Wrong,” and “Down In A Hole.” The acoustic set they played was f*&^%$# awesome, and it looked and sounded identical to their appearance on MTV unplugged (albeit no Layne).
One they finished playing the songs they wanted to play on acoustic guitar, the roadies once again appeared to clean up the stage, and the band came back out to play “Sludge Factory,” “We Die Young,” “Heaven Beside You,” Angry Chair” and the universal classic “Man In The Box.” The crowd was loving every single minute of the show, and when the band played “Rooster” and “Would?” for their encore, you could clearly see that every person in attendance was there because they loved Alice In Chain’s music.
This was definitely one of the best shows I have ever attended, and it ranks right up there with the time I saw Jerry Cantrell play a Halloween show in Chicago (he dressed up as dead Elvis). Alice In Chains is an incredible band, and getting a chance to see them regroup in honor of Layne made me feel good (they played a bunch of outtakes from when Layne was alive, which almost made me cry). If you get a chance to see these guys, you WILL NOT be disappointed! I had such an awesome time at the show, I am thinking about flying to NY to see them again later this month.