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The band of July 2013: KISS

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The band of July 2013: KISS
KISS is one of those bands you can actually name the band of every month of every year because they’re just everywhere. You may come to a record store and see plenty of their CDs, you may watch a movie and you see their posters on the main character’s wall, you may see a football game and suddenly the crowd starts chanting “Loud! I wanna hear it loud, right between the eyes!”, your son buys their comic books and your daughter dreams of their Hello Kitty KISS dolls. Sometimes you start to wonder why there’s no KISS Cola or a KISS Disneyland out there, because it looks like the band has already covered all other bases. Their music is legendary, their show is beyond any expectations (though I find RAMMSTEIN very close to the same level) and their merchandise makes any other band look cheap. What do your favorite band have? T-shirts? Pins? Cups? Oh, how original, KISS have their own licensed KISS coffins! In your face! :)

Being an old KISS fan I’ve always felt kind of confused for other bands. You see it’s not very nice to say 99% rock, pop and metal bands on the Earth are influenced by your favorite band, you’d simply look arrogant with such a statement, but hey… what if it’s true? We could take a look at the 70’s, 80’s, 90’s and 00’s scene and find it extremely hard to detect an act that wouldn’t influenced by KISS – sometimes even heavily. And I’m not even talking about music right now, I mean the show, the image elements and the attitude. Any musician can talk a big sack of “we’re so original”, but would he feel comfartable enough talking about it if we’d see his stage with a drum riser, a huge logo on the background and pyrotechnics? It’s always like that with the new acts who’d express themselves visually and I can’t help myself laughing when I read those interviews about “we’re very original, we wear make-up and have fireworks on stage”. Wake up buddy, KISS had it all since 1975!

KISS 1977

KISS in 1977

Many people seem to underestimate KISS as the musicians, but I’ve never seen it this way. I mean if you can dance, jump, play guitar, drive thousands of people in the crowd absolutely crazy and at the same time sing like Paul Stanley, then… I’ve never seen you in my life. It takes enormously lot of skill to play this music the way KISS plays it for already 40 years in the row and frankly now I don’t see any bands with the skill level so high. The most musicians hardly play and walk the stage at the same time and KISS have always delivered the most impressive show on Earth for David Lee Roth’s sake! And just look at all those discoveries they’ve made along their road to stardom… “Beth” has made it clear that a rock band can be very successful doing a ballad and it can’t be denied – just count all those acts who had an international success with ballads :) “I Was Made For Lovin’ You” has proved a rock band can smash the charts with a disco hit and still not to lose all their fans – still many but not all of them. This band has done at least several revolutionary steps in advertising, like blood-printed comic books or revealing the band’s real faces on MTV in 1983 or trying to win in the race with the young 80’s bands (they didn’t win, but didn’t fail either and many old bands like BLACK SABBATH would kill for such a good luck back then).

So I would say relax guys, it’s never a shame to admit the KISS influence, it’s probably one of the best influences possible out there. Many cool musicians have taken the KISS model as the best and the most stable model in the music business and admit that, just because they admire the way Gene Simmons and Paul Stanley rule the band and because they want to be like them.

40 years have passed and KISS is still here. OK, let’s be honest, they are not in their best shape anymore musically, Gene and Paul got older, the original line-up doesn’t exist and Paul’s voice… ok, let’s not talk about sad stuff. The most important thing is the band is still there, active, recording albums, doing the world tours and playing the greatest rock and roll on this planet. They visited Europe in June, I saw the band in Berlin and it was actually very good! I’d say even more – I liked them this time more than in 2010 during the “Sonic Boom” tour. It seems like KISS have talken a right direction recently and they totally deserve to be our next Band of the Month! All hail the kings of the night time world!

Text : Albert Buchatskyy

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