29 years ago, Alice in Chains released 'Facelift'

Rock Blog

August 21, 2019

Darrell Westmoreland

There is a longstanding history between Alice in Chains and KISW, and as the band celebrates their debut album's 29th anniversary, it's important for us to turn back the clock to where the relationship began.


Before the album was even released, there was a cassette demo that had been floating around and landed on the desk of one Cathy Faulkner, who promptly put "We Die Young" over the KISW airwaves during Metal Shop. She was the first to play Alice In Chains, and also tasked with taking phone calls from other stations around the U.S. who were initially spooked by the band's name and song titles like "Man in the Box". To quote The Late Kate, "They got over that... didn't they?!" Indeed they did!


The Facelift CD release party took place at the Seattle Aquarium on July 31st, 1990.

Darrell Westmoreland


AIC played the Moore Theatre in December 1990, and Mookie Blaylock (better known as Pearl Jam) opened. Jerry Cantrell's guitar was sporting a classic KISW Rock sticker. That very guitar is on display at the Museum of Pop Culture in Seattle. One of the most memorable performances of the night was "Love, Hate, Love".


The show was turned into a home video and released in July 1991. Get a look at the epic setlist here


Facelift was certified Gold on September 11th, 1991, and was the first grunge album to achieve Gold status.

Darrell Westmoreland

Seattle's grunge movement was truly coming alive at this time, and those who were part of it will tell you that you can't compare the scene to anything else. One of the individuals who knows this best is longtime music and entertainment photographer Darrell Westmoreland, and on Thursday, August 22nd, his new gallery of work opens. SNAP CLICK FLASH will take place at Glazer's Camera from 5:30pm-8:30pm, showcasing his incredible career with visual story telling that would make any music fan's jaw drop.


Thank you, Darrell, for capturing these moments in Alice in Chains and KISW history! We cannot wait to celebrate your work tomorrow night in Seattle.


A very happy birthday to Facelift, and album we celebrate at The Rock of Seattle every single day!


Happy Rocking,


Taryn Daly