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A 7-track EP released in 1994 by Alice in Chains. Like the Sap EP, the overall feel of the record was much softer than AiC's full-length LPs, although the depression and self-loathing of Dirt was still apparent. It was written and recorded in the space of a week, yet debuted at number one in the US album charts, the first EP to do so. It was also the first release with new bassist, Mike Inez, who co-wrote some of the songs.

Tracklist:

  1. Rotten Apple - 6:56
  2. Nutshell - 4:16
  3. I Stay Away - 4:13
  4. No Excuses 4:15
  5. Whale and Wasp [instrumental] - 2:35
  6. Don't Follow - 4:21
  7. Swing on This - 4:01

Two singles were released -- No Excuses and I Stay Away -- the latter having an excellent claymation video which unexpectedly manages to capture the feel of the song. I rate Jar of Flies as AiC's most consistent work - the only weak track for me is Swing on This. The success of the EP was undoubtedly a major reason for the band's later appearance on MTV Unplugged (mysteriously though, only two songs from Jar of Flies were played in the Unplugged set).

As for the name? Well, rumour has it that the origin is a high school science lab experiment performed by Jerry: two jars of flies, one with food and one without. The flies without food ate each other.

Sources:
http://www.allmusic.com
http://www.aliceinchains.net

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