Posted on by Oran

Grunge legends Alice In Chains have lifted the veil on a 30th anniversary edition of their 4x multi-platinum EP “Jar Of Flies“.

The announcement of that effort arrives on the same week which the EP was originally released on back in 1994. That effort carries the distinction of being the first EP to ever debut at #1 on the Billboard 200.

Speaking of the release, Sony says;  “In addition to a standard black 12” vinyl release available from all retailers, the band’s official web-store will offer a number of D2C variants of Jar of Flies, including tri-coloured vinyl, cassette, a clear variant with ‘flies’ embedded in the vinyl, and a deluxe box set featuring the EP on tri-coloured vinyl, a logo-embossed jar with touch-activated red LED and faux flies, a 60-page hardcover book, and a double-sided poster, all housed in a screen-printed, UV coated shadowbox.

Additionally, an exclusive merch capsule collection is available now, featuring limited edition apparel, a poker set, a skate deck in collaboration with Welcome Skateboards, and a ‘Whale & Wasp’ plush toy.”

Following an exhausting and transformative tour in support of the group’s sophomore album Dirt (1992), Jar of Flies offered the Seattle grunge icons a chance to record music in a more relaxed environment and intimate, acoustic style. For the first time in the studio, singer Layne Staley, guitarist Jerry Cantrell and drummer Sean Kinney were joined by bassist Mike Inez, who joined Alice in Chains midway through their 1993 tour.

After playing loud music for a year, we’d come home and the last thing we wanted to do was crank up the amps right away,” Kinney later told Guitar World about the sessions that became Jar of Flies. “We just went into the studio with no songs written, to check out the chemistry. It all fell into place…We thought it would be a waste not to put that material out.”

The self-produced EP acted as a spiritual sequel to the group’s last EP Sap (1992), which also featured a more acoustic-driven sound. Tracks like “I Stay Away,” “No Excuses”, and “Don’t Follow” showcased the range of Alice in Chains, further establishing them as one of the most unique and engaging rock bands of the decade.

It garnered the group two Grammy Award nominations for Best Hard Rock Performance (“I Stay Away”) and Best Recording Package. Jar of Flies made retrospective year-end lists from both Rolling Stone and Guitar World, and in 2022 was certified 4x Platinum by the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA).

A tentative March 22nd release date is expected. In addition to the various editions of the EP, a special 30th anniversary merch drop for the EP has also surfaced. You can dig into all of that via this link.

Alice in Chains is set to perform at Sick New World, taking place Saturday, April 27, 2024 at the Las Vegas Festival Grounds in Las Vegas, NV. They’ll share the stage with a murderer’s row of timeless rock and metal acts including System of a Down, Slipknot, A Perfect Circle, Bring Me the Horizon and more. For more information, visit this link for tickets and info.

Oran O’Beirne 2024