Black Gives Way To Blue - Alice in Chains
User Score
8.8

Universal acclaim- based on 114 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Negative: 0 out of 114

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  1. Jan 16, 2011
    9
    Incredible return by one of the kings of grunge music. The 14 year layoff was worth the wait with this original bone jarring album that will hit you right in the gut. The late rock legend Layne staley is replaced with William Duvall who brings his own edge to the band. Cantrell is back with his intense sincere solos and rhythm guitar. Cantrell sings as much in this album as any Alice in Chains album as Duvall is eased into the role of the new lead singer for fans. Highlights include private hell, acid bubble, and a looking in view. The feel of the band has evolved from the heroin addiction they faced in the 90's to a more developed controlled sound that unleashes its fiery on you like a tornado. Expand
  2. Jan 3, 2012
    10
    You can't judge the Jerry. He wanna make some music and sell some records. He used the "Alice in Chains" name for selling records. OK, I know, it's not Alice in Chains anymore, but that doesn't mean this album is sh*t. It's a very good album, out of my expectations..
  3. Sep 4, 2010
    5
    I LOVE Alice in Chains, but this is a pretty mediocre record. It's not just the absence of Layne's great voice. It's that the album feels incoherent. Some songs are the gloomy sludge metal dirges Alice are famous for, others are the softer ballads present on their between album EP's. Jerry's songwriting chops also aren't as sharp as they used to be.
  4. Dec 1, 2010
    8
    Alice In Chains. One of the greatest bands i know.

    With the death of Layne Staley, the band haven't done a album in years.

    I personally think this was a definitely this was a great comeback album and show they still got their talented Jerry Cantrell as song writer and I think this album is great with their new singer William Duvall.

    Rip Layne
  5. Jan 5, 2011
    7
    The revival of one of the greatest bands of the grunge era returns with more ringing harmonies and guitar solos this time with new headman William Duvall. Although without the limitless and ultra-talented late-Layne Staley, the band continues to make great music with hits such as "Your Decision," "Lesson Learned," "Private Hell," "Acid Bubble," and many more. Guitar and vocalist Jerry Cantrell, as well as Sean Kinney and Mike Inez also return to continue the legacy and continuation of grunge in modern music. Expand
  6. May 23, 2011
    9
    A great album for someone waiting for grunge to come back (Pearl Jam reissues don't count). William Duvall is a worthy addition to the band. "Check My Brain," "Your Decision," and "Black Gives Way to Blue" are all highlights.
  7. Dec 8, 2011
    10
    Surprisingly for some, this is probably the best AIC album. Every track has that special touch which makes every bridge or chorus irresistible, even for the non-fan, and positively not turning it into a cheap work in exchange. Jerry Cantrell shows again - and better than ever - why he's the most gifted songwriter and guitar hero from that rainy, unbelievable hometown. William DuVall is a blessing from the heavens and his strong presence in each required situation grants him nothing but admiration. There's no such "roller coaster" feeling as you travel through the record, what I believe was some kind of "regular irregularity" present in the previous releases. Expand
  8. Jun 21, 2012
    10
    Great album, great band. Enough said.
  9. Jun 19, 2013
    10
    Incredible return by AIC. William DuVall is wonderful. Great music and production. Was very skeptical upon team returning after Layne Staley passed, but this group is here to stay. My album of the year in rock for 2009.
  10. Mar 26, 2013
    10
    Other than the replacement of the junkie Layne Staley with William Duval (whose vocals are almost always overshadowed by Jerry Cantrell), this is classic AIC. No complaints here.
  11. Sep 12, 2013
    10
    A terrific comeback album by the best grunge band of the 90s, Black Gives Way To Blue is heavier and has greater sludge influences than the earlier albums, but that just adds to the allure. It is the perfect mix of heavy tracks such as "Check My Brain" and "A Looking In View", and mellow ones such as "Your Decision" and "When The Sun Rose Again". The title track is a heart-warming tribute to Layne Staley, who will remain in our hearts forever. Will DuVall is a fitting replacement and ensures that there is no decline in quality as far as the music is concerned. All in all, an amazing return. Grunge is back. Expand
Metascore
69

Generally favorable reviews - based on 15 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 9 out of 15
  2. Negative: 0 out of 15
  1. While there are a few lulls, none are glaringly offensive, and the band builds up so much good will with the stronger material that it’s easy to surrender again to these Chains.
  2. There’s still something oddly admirable about Alice In Chains’ stubborn refusal to change.
  3. What Black lacks are great tunes and a sense of can't-look-away drama.