“Turn it up, this is my attitude, take it or leave it”
OK, this is the third time I’ve tried writing this introduction. The first 1,000 word draft will now go towards a politics in music blog I’ll try and publish this weekend. The second was 500 words that took the quote above and harped on and on about the underlining simplicity in Rock n Roll and the destruction caused by ego’s and money. Those words have now been deleted and it’s time to talk about the hottest band in the world, KISS.
I first discovered them while watching a wee film called Detroit Rock City in 1999. I had heard of the seven foot icons from magazines and seen pictures but didn’t actually know what they sounded like until I’d seen the movie. Ninety minutes later I was on the phone to the Record Room in Sligo asking them to order in KISS and Destroyer. When I picked up the albums I could hardly contain myself. Fortunately I had taped DRC and spent a week watching it over and over again, thanking god for opening my eyes to one of the greatest bands I’d heard in years. Everything about KISS became appealing. They weren’t pushing politics, they weren’t preaching about charities and they weren’t Radiohead. They dressed up in black costumes, make-up and blew their stages to pieces during live shows. On top of that they played bad ass, catchy as hell rock n roll, sold almost everything in the world as a KISS product and had a bass player who is so full of himself and honest about his views on the world, you’d be foolish not to admire him.
So how should one go about starting their love for the America’s greatest rock n roll band? By buying their debut album off course.
KISS is without a shadow of a doubt one of the bands strongest albums. Opening with the dirty styled Strutter, the band display their talent for catchy hooks, duel guitar leads and riffs, high piercing vocals and lyrics that only grow as the album progresses. Nothin’ to Lose and Firehouse are great little numbers that carry their own little iconic place in KISS’s history and live in Firehouse’s case. The mighty Cold Gin is one of the bands masterpieces. Pure rock n roll that personifies the bands characters and gives them their true sound. Let me know chirps things up abit while the anathematic Kissin’ Time might act as a deterrent for those of you who don’t already love KISS..so skip that one. Fortunately the best is still to come.
The incredible Deuce brings to a high very few bands can keep going but 100,00 Years and the enormous Black Diamond manage to keep them on a high to close the album with a balanced mix of heavy guitars, perfectly suited solo’s, theatrics in the lyrics and more control over song writing and melody than most bands can only wet-dream about.
KISS are more than a band, they’re a life-style. Get into them quick is my advice and ‘baby get ready, because they’ll be KISSin’ you’ next year!