Archive for 100 000 Years

KISS – ALIVE IV (PART 4 OF 4)

Posted in Album Review, Music with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , on October 1, 2009 by Tickets There

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Ah, I can’t believe this is the last one already. The sound of the classic ‘You Wanted the Best, You Got the best’ intro is a welcome, welcome return. So, this album was recorded seven years after the Alive III and in that time, the band reformed with their original line-up, played a massive two year world tour and released a studio album entitled Psycho Circus. Oh, and they put the fucking makeup and suits back on!! The legends returned to their thrones and revived one of Rock N Rolls greatest bands. KISS are kings, KISS are Gods, KISS are KISS!!

So, after the intro booms over the PA, the opening chords of Psycho Circus blare out and the band fire things up in rocketing style. Psycho Circus is an absolute gem of a track and without a doubt the best thing to come of their last studio album. Even the mighty Shout It Out Loud doesn’t undermine its impact, despite the fact that the version here is a heaving monster of a thing. Shout It Out Loud is one of about eighty KISS tracks that could take the title for ultimate party anthem. You may notice several repeats on this record from the previous three but I’ll try and keep it interesting J, so come on, ‘Shout It, Shout, It, Shout it out loud! Turn it up Louder baby!’

As always, the amazing Deuce makes an appearance and honestly, a KISS live record or show wouldn’t be the same without this song. In fact, if you ever do go to one of their gigs and they don’t play it, stage a protest and sing songs of freedom….until Gene tells you to stop, then you obey the master and be on your way. I love this song! I meant to write more about the stage theatrics when I was doing the first Alive article and one of the things I wanted to describe was the routine Ace, Gene and Paul do towards the end. You cant really describe it properly though so pop over to this location on YouTube and see if for yourself. Well worth it.

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 Next up, their eighties classic Heavens on Fire, which just doesn’t get old. Kind of a slow start on the recording but they pull through. Next track, Into the Void is another great track from Psycho Circus and legendary guitarist, Mr. Space Ace Frehley himself make it what it is. Ace should do more lead vocals. It may not be the strongest voice in the universe but it’s perfect. Great upbeat rock number and its successor, Firehouse is just as good or else a lot better, I always get those confused :p. I think this is Firehouses first appearance on a Live record so I’ll fill ye in. When the band play this live, the stage lights up with siren flashing lights and at the end, Gene Simmons breaths fire (think it’s this one). The fire breathing is fun, especially since uses a flaming sword to do it. Fuck the haters; Gene Simmons rocks your balls off (wide open TT – Ed).

Do You Love Me is another classic KISS number that really doesn’t need too much explanation. Pretty good job of it done here. Let Me Go Rock N Roll is a brilliant riff/solo filled belter. Ace’s guitar work is incredible here and it’s good to know that, no matter how much time those guys spend apart from one another, that still got it! Tickets There’s beloved I Love It Loud’s up next. You can never get sick of this song. Not really bothered about details for this last one, just enjoying it. Personally I’d recommend just going out and buying these albums rather than reading my reviews, but whatever. Lick It Up, god I love that song. I wonder what Ace and Peter thought about playing it since they weren’t involved on the original. Ah well, it all sounds good.

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Ah, the Stanley penned 100,000 Years. Does it get any better than this? Now the show is in overdrive and the next six (five songs, fuck Beth, we’re not mentioning it – Ed) songs will have you rolling around in your seat. Mental track and possibly the closest thing the band have done to metal or at the very least, it’s a damn fine attempt at it. Love Gun’s next and this is possibly my favorite live recording, even better that the Alive II one. Paul’s voice is shockingly good and the band sound on top form. At the start you can hear Paul mention he’s coming out to the crowd. During their reunion tour, they set up a rig that allows Paul to fly over the audiences heads and land on a small stage towards the back of the arena, stadium..etc.

Black Diamond, Beth (ugh) and Rock N Roll All Night finish the shows off as pyro’s explode away in the back ground and make any listener wish for their chance to stand in one of KISS’s crowds. Amazing stuff, good auld KISS.

Well, I’ve tried. Not sure I succeeded but at least I tried to write something about the magic of this band. They are incredible and with a new album on the way in a few days, you can guarantee KISS will be around for a long time to come.

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KISS – ALIVE! (PART 1 OF 4)

Posted in Album Review, Music with tags , , , , , , , , , , on September 29, 2009 by Tickets There

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Ok, Tickets There is continuing it’s celebrations in preparation for the release of KISS’s new album, Sonic Boom on October 6th. First we had the KISS-LECTION and now it’s time to take a good, hard look at KISS’s four Live albums, Alive! I – IV.

Before we get into it, I should point out that none of the albums come close to capturing KISS’s impossibly amazing live shows. Tickets There has been fortunate enough to be in one of their crowds and let me tell you one thing, no album could ever capture exactly how amazing they are in real life….but these albums do a damn fine job of trying.

So let’s start at the beginning with 1975’s Alive!, recorded between March and June 1975 on KISS’s Dressed to Kill tour. Upon it’s release, KISS were suddenly lunged from almost broke, make-up wearing guys in a rock n roll band to world famous, gigantic megastars. This is the album that really broke KISS into the main, main, main stream and it ended up becoming one of rock n roll’s most legendary live albums. None of the bands proceeding live records match its unbelievable raw energy, power and force and that’s saying something considering how good II, III and IV are.

“You Wanted the Best, you got the best, The hottest band in the world, KISS!”.

When you buy tickets to a KISS concert, you spend the next few days, weeks and months just waiting to hear those infamous words. The intro to the best concert you will ever see in your life. Those words are unbelievably exciting at one of their shows and when that curtain drops and the four massive figures sprawl out across the stage to entertain you with two hours of hard hitting, riff driven, theatrical rock n roll with a stage show that could match the Olympics, you’ll swear you died and this is your reward for all the good things you’ve done in your life.

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The only thing that tops those words is the first bars of the very first song the band play. On Alive, that song was Deuce. Deuce as an opening song couldn’t be any more perfect. They’re currently playing it as the opener on the current tour and really you can’t go wrong. Starts off with a little guitars riff before the drums crash into action, the curtain drops and four heaving monsters start their quest of ensuring you have the greatest night in the history of the world. That magic is well captured on Alive and its set the perfect tone for the rest of the record. Strutter follows and the pace is kept up. Filled with all the swank, swagger and traits of any hard rock n fucking roll classic. Except it’s sung by monsters. People, this band have some of hard rock’s greatest hits under their belt and they dress up like demons, space men, cats and superstars. How can you not love that?? Got to Choose follows and admittedly this wouldn’t be one of Tickets There’s favorite KISS tunes…but damn it that doesn’t mean much when everything thing they touch turns to gold. KISS are gods, learn that fact now because they don’t teach it in school.

Hotter than Hell is a truly deserved, bonafide KISS anthem classic (yep, anthem classic. It makes sense in our word baby). The version on Alive is as good as this song gets….until you see it live and it rules all!! Nothing to Lose follows and surprise, surprise…..It’s another fucking savage track. Gene sings on this one and when Gene sings, you don’t want to miss it. It brings a totally different flow to the bands tracks. C’mon and Love Me is yet another riff filled, exploited teen of a song. Paul takes the mike back and drives this baby into your ears like a doctor during an invasive medical exam with some sort of blunt yet thick object….with spikes. But before we go using all our unfunny witticisms, we have to discuss Parasite. Why the pause and dramatics? Because Parasite is one of those tracks God wrote and handed to mortals as a gift. Unfortunately for that mortal, KISS stole it and recorded it themselves. God was pleased by this, Led Zeppelin would have only fucked it up anyways. This is a savage, mentalist of a track that only improves with a live setting. Mental, mental, mental stuff folks.

She is another one of those iconic riffs and beat dependant tracks, not a bad way to spend your five minutes before the very seventies trait laden Watchin’ You pop’s along. Unfortunately this one ain’t included much anymore but it’s 100% KISS-TASTIC. Yes you can say things like that when you discuss KISS, they’re fun people. Enjoy it.

Oh, oh hang on. Gene’s bass, crowd’s cheering. Silence. Hands clapping, Gene’s bass again, the drums and finally everything else. 100,000 Years is easily KISS at their top level finest. Paul’s voice screams in over the audience as the band burst through one of their greatest recorded moments and one of the finest tracks ever written by a hard rock band. What makes this song look poor?(well, it doesn’t really. 100,000 Years is one of the finest songs known to humanity. I’m just saying that for dramatic purposes) Black Diamond, an ever bigger monster of a rock classic and the acoustic intro ion Alive really highlights this. Black Diamond is top ten KISS material. The kind of song that you play in a tank when you’re driving into one of those Vietnamese towns. The kind of song you play when you discover the true powers as a mutant. The kind of song KISS plays to remind the rest of us we aren’t Knights in Satan’s Service (K.I.S.S., for those of you that didn’t know).

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Rock Bottom and Black Diamonds main rival, Cold Gin is up next as the album and show start to come to a close. How many people here like the taste of alcohol? I know it’s getting so hot outside you need something to cool off. I know some of you out there like to drink tequila. When you’re down in the dumps and you need something to bring you up. There’s only one thing that’s going to do it for you…COLD GIN!!!! What a classic, what a live record, what a fucking sweet, amazing, incredible deadly awesome band.

Rock N Roll All Night (The ultimate party song) and Let Me Go, Rock N Roll finish of the bands first, their finest and one of the world’s greatest rock live albums. If you don’t feel the party after this record then there’s something not quite right with you but Tickets There will still be your friend. We love a challenge. Later on we’ll discuss Alive II and see what the band got up to during 76 and 77. Be sure to pop back and remember….,

Keep it KISS’d!!!