During a year in which live shows came to a halt, Alice in Chains was fortunate to not have any touring plans for 2020. In fact, as bassist Mike Inez tells ABC Audio, the grunge icons had specifically marked 2020 as a “break” year following the long touring cycle behind their most recent album, 2018’s Rainier Fog.
“We went on the road for about 18 months solid,” Inez says. “I mean, we’ve been all over this planet. So it’s nice to take a breather after all that, from each other, from the road.”
“After a while you start just feeling like a trail mule,” he laughs. “You get up, eat something, go to soundcheck, do your press, eat something, play the gig.”
With Alice set to the side for a bit, the band members had hoped to pursue different, personal projects in 2020. Vocalist William DuVall planned to continue touring in support of his debut solo album, 2019’s One Alone, but that, of course, also ended up set to the side as the COVID-19 pandemic swept the world.
“Having been forced to be at home and not doing anything and not traveling it has, at least for me, it’s forced me to get creative in different ways,” DuVall says. “I’ve been doing livestream shows.”
DuVall adds that he’s spent some time this year thinking of “riffs and things” for possible new Alice material, but he cautions that no concrete work on another album has yet begun.
“We haven’t gotten together or exchanged any ideas or anything remotely,” he says.
Alice in Chains did get together for a performance earlier in December when they were honored with the Seattle Museum of Pop Culture’s Founders Award. Playback of the event is streaming now on YouTube.
By Josh Johnson
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