Thursday, June 29, 2006
Wednesday, June 28, 2006
Tuesday, June 27, 2006
Monday, June 26, 2006
As an esteemed Kisstorian, people stop me on the street constantly and ask me questions about KISS lore. Why just yesterday, a guy came up to me in the supermarket and said "Hey Sweatpants, what's the deal with that Killers album? It seems pretty hard to find on both vinyl and cd and it's not available on ITunes. Are those 4 new songs really worth seeking out?" I thought that was a great question so I'd like to answer it once and for all.
The year was 1982. KISS was at a crossroads. After the colossal, career threatening failure of the concept album known as Music From "The Elder", the Killers album was whipped out as a way of apologizing to the many bewildered KISS fans as if to say "don't worry, the Elder was merely a quick detour. We're still the same crazy rockers that we used to be." It bought them some much needed time to plan their next move (the fantastic yet underappreciated Creatures of the Night.) Killers is basically a German import greatest hits collection that contains 4 exclusive tracks, all with Paul on vocals. You'll notice that the S's on the album cover differ from their normal logo. This is because the similarities between the "S" and the swastika were deemed offensive in Germany. Personally I don't see it. But let's break down the 4 songs, shall we?
1) I'M A LEGEND TONIGHT - Sounds like training montage music for a Rocky movie with Paul singing about how great he is. It's not bad.
2) DOWN ON YOUR KNEES - One of Paul's most vulgar songs as the title implies. The chorus sounds kind of like the Saved by the Bell theme song. Also not bad.
3) NOWHERE TO RUN - This song is the template for all of the half-assed garbage that KISS threw at us in the 80's.
4) PARTNERS IN CRIME - Interesting because it couldn't fit on any KISS album and yet it's unquestionably KISS. Really makes you think.. about KISS.
So to summarize - Q: Is Killers worth the effort and money to try and find a copy? A: Barely.
I should add that the "hits" that were chosen for this compilation are superb. But the "look" from this era was very awkward. Gene's short hair is questionable at best and Paul's bandana is... unnerving.
Thursday, June 22, 2006
Wednesday, June 21, 2006
Tuesday, June 20, 2006
Kiss Pepsi Comercial
A World Without Heros
God Gave Rock N Roll To you
..I love this song. The audio is a little off though.. sorry.
"I know life sometimes can get tough! And I know life sometimes can be a drag! But people, we have been given a gift, we have been given a road And that road's name is... Rock and Roll!"
Paul Stanley guitar solo (Animalize tour 1985)
..is JPX in the auidence?
This is AMAZING!! Watch this.. People in the auidence demand the Elder! ..Gene and Paul don't remember the songs.. HAHAhaha..
Picture it, the year was 1985. A certain Mr. Stallone had not one, but 2 huge films burning up the local cinema (Rambo II and Rocky IV), Frankie Goes to Hollywood was telling everyone to "Relax" and Michael Jackson penned the infectious "We are the World". The Golden Girls premiered and I've been laughing ever since. That's right, damnit, one disgusted eye-raising from Bea Arthur is funnier than anything on television today. The year would also see KISS in full-blown money-making mode. With the success of Animalize, Paul and co. realized, "Heck, we don't really need to try all the hard with the music, the kids will come to our shows no matter what we put out." My friends and I couldn't be more excited. Still reeling from the Animalize tour one year earlier, we eagerly snapped up tickets for the Providence Civic Center (none of this Dunkin' Donuts Center crap). I owned the world's cheapest camera, which I manage to smuggle into the show. I have a series of pictures that all look pretty much like this one. If you squint, you can just make out the rock soldiers.
Monday, June 19, 2006
Pictured here is the "Unholy" sign that I always found hilarious. In the Unholy video, you can see Paul bust this move out at least a couple of times. Arms positioned in a cross formation with the upper hand giving an "a-OK", which I suppose makes him very unholy. Why? What's the significance? I DON'T KNOW!
Friday, June 16, 2006
So for those who are not aware, Paul Stanley has spent a lot of time *sigh* painting original art. This is the fourth in his KISS series focusing on the Catman. I find that the large brush strokes and bright colors really capture the essence of the cat and tend to eccentuate the... oh dear lord.
Thursday, June 15, 2006
Universal in Japan will release a KISS DVD, entitled "Lick It Up", on August 23, 2006. The DVD will contain the following videos:
01. I Love It Loud
02. Rise to It
03. All Hell's Breaking Loose
04. Heaven's On Fire
05. Thrills in The Night
06. Tears are Falling
07. Who Wants to Be Lonely
08. Uh! All Night
09. Reason To Live
10. Turn On The Night
11. Crazy Crazy Nights
12. Let's Put The X in Sex
13. Rock Hard
17. Every Time I Look At You
18. God Gave Rock & Roll to You
Wednesday, June 14, 2006
Every KISS show is as choreographed as a ballet, especially when klassic KISS is performing. As sure as the sun will rise in the morning, there are certain aspects of a KISS show that we’ve come to expect. In fact, you could go to any KISS show with a checklist of performances you are GUARANTEED to see. Gene breathing fire, check. Paul telling that tired intro to Lick it Up, check, Ace firing a rocket from his guitar, check. Gene spitting blood, check. Ace’s guitar “floating” away, check, Gene “flying”, check The one thing that has always amused me is Peter’s performance of Beth.
No, this isn’t about finally getting to see Peter after he’s been buried behind the drum kit all night long. It’s not about the requisite rose that’ll he’ll eventually toss into the audience. It’s not even about getting to hear Peter sing. For me, what’s always been so surreal about Peter singing Beth is that damn white towel that he wears around his neck while professing his love to some long ago girlfriend that probably hates him today. Okay, you might say, “Well he does that because he’s sweaty from playing the drums all night long!” Uh uh, I’m not buying it so you should stop trying to peddle it. Like any KISS show, you know a lot of thought went into Peter’s towel. Come on! It’s this striking white towel wrapped around his neck as if he’s just gotten out of the shower. Why, Peter, why? What was the artistic thinking that went into that? Did Peter suggest during one of their roundtable discussions, “Guys, I have an idea, when I sing Beth what if I wear a white towel around my neck? It’ll be great! It’ll be come my signature move!” When I watch Peter perform Beth, all I can think about is his white towel. It haunts me.
Tuesday, June 13, 2006
..the camera is pretty much off Vinnie for the most part, 'til Vinnie's guitar solo. ..It's worth the wait!
(better visual quallity)
Live in Rio 6-18-83
A Kiss interview over-dubbed in a different language
Lick it up!!!
Vinnie Vincent Invasion - "Boys Are Gonna Rock"
..I believe thats Mark Slaughter on vocals..
I started this as a comment on Johnnysweatpants'Animalize review, however I thought it was better suited as its own post. First, as I stated below, I slammed Animalize by identifying "Burn Bitch Burn" as the exact moment that KISS jumped the shark. My theory is that Animalize reflects a shift from KISS as rock music to KISS as a corporate symbol. With the failure of The Elder, which must’ve been a serious blow to the band’s self esteem, especially Gene’s narcissism, I think the spirit of the band died. KISS had to face the glaring fact that they were largely regarded as a 70s novelty act and nothing more. Creatures was one last attempt at their formal glory and Lick it Up was most likely a pure business move designed to reinvent themselves and create curiosity with the removal of the makeup. At that point however, it was too little and too late. The KISS boat had sailed and would never really recover. I think Animalize/Asylum/Hot in the Shade reflect a move away from the artistry of rock music toward their ultimate place as a corporate symbol. Gene and Paul realized that there was still money to be made with the KISS name, however they had completely lost interest in creating real rock and roll. This trilogy of albums ultimately reflects the band going through the motions. It’s true that Paul can whip a catchy tune out of his ass anytime he wants to, hence Heaven’s on Fire, Tears are Falling, and Forever, but as everyone knows, Gene was literally phoning in his performances while attempting, and ultimately failing, to establish a movie career. Apparently he forgot that his visage is not exactly pinup material for teenage girls. Ace and Peter ultimately lost interest. Revenge and Carnival of Souls have their moments, and I’m fond of Psycho Circus, especially that song, but for me KISS really ended a brilliant career with Lick it Up, the last album that one can listen to from beginning to end without skipping or groaning over the material. "On the 8th Day" is the perfect ending to that album and a nice way for KISS to go out.
Monday, June 12, 2006
I love Ace's guitar in this video!
KISS jams live on "I" from Fridays in late 1981. One of Ace Frehley's last live TV appearances before he "quit" KISS in 1982.
..this is awesome!
KISS performs duece on a t.v show in 1975.
1980 lip-synched performance from German television of the single from the "Unmasked" album released that year. Note the presence of new drummer Eric Carr. (Original drummer Peter Criss is pictured on the cover of the album and Anton Fig plays on the studio track.)
A World Without Heroes
this was one of the rare shows where they do this song, notice Paul doing the solo?...great stuff....
Got to Choose
KISS Got to Choose live from winterland '75. great!!
Their first TV appearence!
live from the Midnight Special 1975
It’s one thing to think about and talk about KISS. Listening to KISS is another thing entirely. I picked up Animalize over the weekend to try and komplete my kollection once and for all. I obviously remember that Animalize isn’t very good, I owned it on vinyl and cassette. What I didn’t realize until listening to it beginning to end this morning is that it’s a dreadful, dreadful album documenting KISS hitting rock bottom. Heavens on Fire is a timeless classic but if you take that song off the album, you’re left with a pile of half-assed forgettable swill. What the hell does I’ve Had Enough (Into the Fire) even mean? No one knows. No one cares. How could the quality drop so much between Lick it Up and Animalize? With Lick it Up, KISS had something to prove – that they could survive without makeup. That album stands the test of time because of its tough-as-nails attitude. No street hustler was gonna keep Paul Stanley down. But by Animalize, Paul and Gene were all but replaced by vacant robots, going through the motions. Maybe it was Gene’s unfocused attention to music. Maybe they got greedy and lazy and lost their identity. Or maybe they just ran out of ideas and decided to phone it in. I don’t know. What I do know is that I never need to hear Murder in High Heels again for the rest of my life. Mark St. John may have been an adequate Vinnie replacement but even his fat hand couldn’t carry Paul and Gene through the dark ages. I challenge anyone to listen to the bland, generic Lonely is the Hunter and then sing the chorus an hour later. It can’t be done.
Friday, June 09, 2006
And while the KISS scents do not contain actual band member sweat – as far as we know - they do contain a heady blend of black cumin, white pepper, dark rum, cypress, moss and honeyed amber blend (pour homme) and crushed red peppercorns, wet fig leaves, wild red poppy, musky bare skin accord, shiny patent leather and vintage mahogany (pour femme). And both the men's and women's scents and ancillary products - Party Shower Gel, Lovin' Body Lotion, Rockin' Bath Splash - also contain pheromones, which are said to increase libido and up one's sexual attraction factor.
The KISS men's fragrance will be packaged in shiny black patent-looking box featuring the band's signature flame red logo ("representing heat and passion," according to a spokesperson), while the ladies' scent is housed in a translucent glass bottle with a black KISS logo. Fans can choose from one of four bottle caps, each depicting a different band member's likeness.
Retailing from $20 for the Bath Splash to $49 for Eau de Parfum Spray, the line is likely to be carried in Federated department stores, Sephora and possibly Tower and Virgin record outlets (distribution negotiations are still underway).
What is certain, according to Neil Katz, the president and CEO of Gemini, the company behind the fragrance, is that the KISS scents will r-o-c-k. And, he's hoping, sell like leather-coated hotcakes. "KISS has sold a billion dollars in merchandise," said Katz. "We really have two target [buyers]: the nostalgia buyers or collectors, and the
younger, 18-to-24 target."
To this end, Gemini is planning a major advertising and marketing campaign - with logo-driven print ads, scented tattoos, car fresheners, stickers, and in-store band appearances, among other things - as well as on-campus promotional events aimed at teaching students how to rock and roll all nite and smell good ev-e-ry day.
As if this weren't enough to make KISS fans spew flames of joy, the band recently launched a premium denim line and announced plans to open the world's first KISS Coffeehouse on Tuesday, June 27th, in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina.
And yes, Gene Simmons and Paul Stanley will be on hand to cut the ribbon on what a press release describes as "the most outrageous coffee and dessert shop ever constructed."
And those itching to join the KISS Army can enroll here, as the café will not only be home to 20-foot-tall smoking KISS boots and rare KISSmemorabilia and costumes, serve "KISS Frozen Rockuccino, the most caffeinated and refreshing coffee beverage on the market, as well as a full array of cookies brownies and cupcakes," but will also function as "an official KISS Army recruiting office."
"Every army needs food and drink and the KISS Army is no exception!" said Gene Simmons. "Even the non-enlisted will find our treats and java rockin' good!"
And actual enlisted men will not be forgotten, either, as the band plans to ship 1,000 bags of KISS Army Blend coffee to the US Armed Forces in Iraq in conjunction with the cafe's grand opening.
Added Stanley, "the KISS Coffeehouse is our way of providing everyone with a buzz of great, quality treats and coffee filled with enough sugar and caffeine to get the party started and keep it going!"
Pheromones not included.
So I'd like the KISS panel to review every KISS album, one at a time, including Killers. But I'd rather not do them in order to keep things interesting.
Hotter Than Hell is one of my personal favorite KISS records and has been for some years now. In my opinion it's as close to a perfect album as KISS gets. One of the many reasons it's so mind-blowing is that part in Watchin' You when the guitar is like "Bum-ba-na-naaah, bum-ba-na-na-naaah, bum-ba-na-naah, bum-ba-na-na-naah" and then the other guitar joins in and they're all like "BUM-BA-NA-NAAAH!!!, BUM-BA-NA-NA-NAAAH!!!". It's one of those moments that makes you sit back and think about just how fantastic KISS really is. In fact, I'm listening to Watchin' You right now and it's at the "And I'm trying baby, trying not to STAAAAAAARE!-AAAAAAAHHHHHHHH!!" part. Helluva song.
But there's more to Hotter Than Hell than that one song. The song Hotter Than Hell is KISS in peak form. The song couldn't be more basic but it works. Going Blind is probably the only excellent Gene ballad in existence. (When You Wish Upon A Star just doesn't do it for me, sorry JPX.) And Strange Ways showcases Peter's cat-like raspiness in all its glory. And I shouldn't even have to mention Parasite but I just did so all I'll add is that Parasite friggin' rules.
Wednesday, June 07, 2006
Classic scene from Kiss Meets the Phantom. Slow motion, 70's sci-fi sound effects, simple, brilliant. After Paul smashes the 2 wolfmen's heads together, Peter quips "Dey awl lose dere 'eads ova you Pawl" followed by a well placed "ack!" from Ace.
Tuesday, June 06, 2006
I still get fired up when I see this. ...Every time
Rob Zombie, Tommy Lee, Scott Ian, Gilby Clarke, Slash, and Ace Frehley perform "God of Thunder" at the VH1 Rock Honors and blew the doors off Kiss. Gene Simmon's Kiss is a major disappointment these days. There is no need to go on without Peter Criss and Ace. Hang it up Gene. You're an embarrassment.
"Talk To Me"
..Talk to mee heee ...Talk to Mee heeeee.
"2000 Man unplugged"
Houton '77 "Shock Me"
I've often stated that horror movies jumped the shark when Freddy put on sunglasses during the opening scene of A Nightmare on Elm Street 4. At that precise moment a little piece of me died. I mean, it’s the iconic Freddy Kruger, the guy who was so terrifying in the original film – what the hell was he doing putting on those sunglasses and cracking stupid jokes??? He was somewhat redeemed with the better-than-it-should’ve-been Freddy vs. Jason. What does this have to do with KISS? - Not very much actually. I was going somewhere with this point. Oh yeah, I remember now. Until Animalize, KISS had been making some nifty musical efforts. Creatures of the Night is one of their best albums and track for track Lick it Up was even better, but what did they follow these chestnuts up with? Animalize! We knew we were in trouble from the cover. I suspect that they gave us this ugly cover when they sadly concluded that they weren’t GQ models without their makeup. Anyway, KISS jumped the shark with this album. Yes, there are a few standout tracks, but Gene’s offerings are abysmal. For me, KISS jumped the shark the moment I heard “Burn Bitch Burn”. There I was, sitting in my parents’ house with nobody home. I eagerly peeled back the cellophane of what I anticipated to be another KISS gem and what I heard instead was the worst song Gene ever wrote, “Burn Bitch, Burn”. Don't believe me, read the lyrics for yourself:
"Well it's out of the fryin' pan and into the fire
You bent over, baby, and let me be the driver
Just a cut of pink, wouldn't believe me if I told you
But this time you bit off more than you can chew
My my, yeah, just listen to this, babe
I got nasty habits, it's a fine line,
so many girls and so little time
When love rears its head, I wanna get on your case
Ooh baby, wanna put my log in your fireplace,
maybe baby, you wanna get played
Burn bitch burn, oooh, burn bitch burn, oooh
Burn bitch burn, oooh, burn bitch burn
Well it's an act of thrust and anyway you slice it
No sticks and stones, no kicks and groans can hide it
So why kid yourself, it's so cut and dry
Your body's condemned, and figures don't lie
Gonna cover my class, won't sit up and beg
Gotta keep my tail between my legs
You're cuttin' off your nose to spite your face
Ooh babe, gonna put you in your place
So burn bitch burn, oooh - well the heels are stacked now
Burn bitch burn, oooh - and there's nothin' you can do
Burn bitch burn, oooh - so don't burn your bridges
Burn bitch burn - we're all through,
we are all through baby, so just burn
Well the heels are stacked against you
Don't burn your bridges, we're all through
Hey babe and there's nothin' you can do
Burn bitch burn, oooh - and there's nothin' you can do babe
Burn bitch burn, oooh - we're all through
Burn bitch burn, oooh - ooh burn, burn my baby
Burn bitch burn, oooh - yeah
Monday, June 05, 2006
This is an interview with gene from Kissonline. After years of trying to decipher the truth out of Gene and Paul's contradictory interviews, I've become very good at interpreting his lies.
QUESTION: Hi Gene!! You guys ruled Rock Honors. The show was awesome! Question for you...Though you've made it quite clear your not concerned with being inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, are you excited about being one of the first inductees in VH1 ROCK HONORS? --- Donald Evans, Fargo, ND
ANSWER (Gene): Rock Honors and the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame are OK...but honestly, they just don't mean as much as playing live and seeing the faces of the KISS Army. Everything begins and ends there. Awards are fine, but they're awarded by "The People Who Decide" those things. I like democracies. I like the fans voting. Either way, not an issue.
WHM: I would kill my family to be inducted in the rock and roll hall of fame.
QUESTION: The ROCK HONORS report! s and photos on KISSONLINE were great! Looked like everyone was having a ball. How was it backstage with the other bands and also seeing ACE? --- Jill Hunt, Austin, TX
ANSWER (Gene): Backstage at Rock Honors was a fascinating time to see big stars, comfortable in their own skin and actually acting civil and cordial to each other. A very professional affair. Egos could have taken over but they did not. There was a lot of patting on the backs and people complimenting each other. Ace was in great spirits and we shared some time together and wished each other well.
WHM: It was a party and I dressed up and mingled with people I hate. I was mortified that they would let Ace in but I did my best to pretend to get along.
QUESTION: In Paul's recently KOL interview he mentions he is willing to record a new KISS album if it could be done to his expectations. Do you think we will see a new KISS album in the future? --- Marcus Jergens, Dortmund, Germany
ANSWER (Gene): Everyone always asks about a new KISS album, and Paul is right...when we do one, i! f we do one, it has to have a reason to exist. We all have to be in the same frame of mind and we all have to figure out how to do a quality album. Quite honestly, I don't feel we have anything to prove to anyone and the only time to do a new album is when we feel it. Until then, all the emails in the world will not change that.
WHM: If there’s money to be had, we’ll make another album. But it’s not worth spending the money recording a new album when only the core KISS fans buy it in the first week. And Ace and Peter aren’t gonna fall for it again.
QUESTION: Gene, I love KISS but I have yet to go to a show with Tommy and Eric. My mind may be changed after watching Rock Honors, the band really was so tight and energetic. How do you say feel about fans like me who, until now, have refused to see KISS if it's not the original lineup? --- Tom Crowley, Lexington, KY
ANSWER (Gene): To fans who don't want to see this lineup - no problem. We're having a great time and are proud of the professionalism within the band. Everyone shows up on time. There are no excuses. No chemicals in anyone's system and after decades of personal torture, it's a pleasure to share the stage with this lineup.
WHM: I don’t care about anybody but myself.
Sunday, June 04, 2006
Saturday, June 03, 2006
On this day in KISStory, a hungry young group of rock misfits try to find their sound. It wasn't until Ace Frehley walked into their lives wearing two different colored sneakers when they finally found what we were all searching for. Ace called everybody "Curly" back then and I like to think that he still does...
I thought we'd start out with an ultra-rare photograph of Mark St. John's legendary swollen hand. Legend has it, he was set to kick off the worldwide Animalize tour when his chapter in KISStory was tragically cut short due to a rare hand disease known as Handtoobiggism. The band have successfully hidden photographic evidence of this era... until now!