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"Jar of Flies" Album ReviewAlpha101 Most consider "Dirt" to be Alice in Chains' best record. While it is undeniable that it is one of Grunge's best albums, it's still a long shot from being "Jar of Flies." This album showed that Layne had a softer side. They went from hard rockers to soft, tear jerking,experimental, and beautiful songs. Time to review probably my second favorite album in history.
"Rotten Apple" is the second best song on the album. Soon as I heard this song, I knew that I would love this album. I was definitely not wrong! Like I said before, most of these songs were very emotional and magnificent, unlike most of their other songs, even though most are still exceptional. "Eat of the apple, so young. I'm crawling back to start." "I repent tomorrow; I suspend my sorrow." These are lyrics that really just hit me like a truck. It starts tearing away at my heart, but, at the same time, makes me so happy for an unknown reason.
"Nutshell" is my favorite song off of the album, my favorite Alice in Chains song, and my favorite Grunge song. That should tell you something. It's a very slow song, like "Rotten Apple," which is pretty uncommon for the band. I could tell that Layne had trouble writing this song, because it really rips his emotions from within him, and is shoved in our faces. "My privacy is raked," further adds to it. "If I can't be my own, I'd feel better dead."
"I Stay Away" starts off very strong, and gets even better as the song trudges on. It has one of the best climaxes I've ever heard in a song. Whenever I finished listening to it for the first time, I had to just sit there and think of what I had just experienced. "Your weakness builds me. So someday you'll see."
"No Excuses" is another marvelous track. It's chorus is exceptional, and the lyrics to this song are simplistic, yet complex at the same time. One of my favorites off the album, and by the band in general. "Everyday something hits me, I'm so cold. I'm finally sitting by myself, no excuses that I know."
"Whale and Wasp" is just an instrumental track. It's very fun to listen to, but probably the weakest on the album. It's a nice change of pace, but it doesn't really contribute to the album as much as others.
"Don't Follow" is great as well. It kind of has a folk feel to it, with harmonicas added. Like "No Excuses," it's beauty is in it's simplicity. "Say goodbye, don't follow. Misery so hollow."
"Swing on This" is a great track, but my only qualm with it is that it doesn't belong at the end of the album. I mean, the album started off with a bang, so it deserves to be sent off with an even bigger bang. "Swing on This" isn't it, sadly. I mean, it's one of my favorite songs of all time, but it's a more upbeat song than the others, and that's not necessarily the theme of the album. Yes, it is about rehab, but it's an upbeat song about rehab. I'm not against it because it's happy-sounding, I'm just against it because it's out of place. Still, it is a great song.
Overall, this album is one of the finest of not only it's time, but the history of music. I know I say that a lot, but I really mean it. Almost every song is perfect. My only complain is that they should have found a better spot for it's closing track, somewhere in the middle possibly, but that's about it. It's an exemplary piece of art that deserves to be heard of every person on the planet.
9.8/10 - Great album.