Alice In Chains guitarist and vocalist Jerry Cantrell was recently asked by Lazer 103.3 if he writing for AIC and a side project like his new solo album are different.
“No, there really isn’t a difference. I’ve developed a style and a way that I write and that I sound, and that is pretty intact in either venue. I’m always kind of collecting ideas, and before I ever get together with Alice to record stuff, I just feel better knowing that I’m walking into the room with the guys with a whole group of really good songs — complete songs or really worked up, almost-together songs — to be able to throw at the guys and see what they dig. The process for me is the same. The only difference is the players that I’m playing and recording with. In the case of Alice, those guys I can always count, they’re gonna take any idea that I have and they’re gonna make it that much better; they’re gonna inject themselves into it and elevate it.
And when you’re working outside of the band — I’ve been fortunate enough on ‘Boggy Depot’, ‘Degradation Trip’ and this record to play with some amazing musicians who are heroes of mine and also friends of mine, and you can count on that as well — they’re gonna inject themselves into it and elevate the piece of music further than you could on your own. So, it’s really just who you’re playing with. If Alice had recorded any of these songs, it would be an Alice In Chains song, but I recorded it with other folks, and so it’s under my banner. Luckily, we haven’t run out of ideas and we are a creative bunch of guys and we can always rely on the fact that we’re gonna make records.”
Cantrell then discussed Mad Season and other side projects, “I think that making records outside of the band that you’re kind of associated and known with is a healthy thing; we’ve all done it. Layne [Staley] did Mad Season with [Mike] McCready and [Mark] Lanegan and others. Sean [Kinney] and Mike [Inez] both did a [Spys4Darwin] record with Vinnie [Dombroski] from Sponge and Chris DeGarmo [Queensryche]. Mike’s done work with Heart and Zakk Wylde.
I’ve done records on my own with a bunch of really cool people, from Fishbone to Primus to Paul McCartney to The Dillinger Escape Plan. [Robert] Trujillo and [Mike] Bordin as well on ‘Degradation Trip’. It’s a healthy thing. There’s nothing wrong with it. And William DuVall — William has put out a couple of records in this time too, with GTO [Giraffe Tongue Orchestra] and a solo record that he put out before the pandemic as well.”