2008 marks the 30th anniversary of the Paul Stanley solo CD (God, that makes me feel old). Ok, if you want to get technical, Paul’s first solo CD didn’t come out until 1997, but the album was out in 1978.
For whatever reason, all four of the KISS solo discs (Gene Simmons, Ace Frehley, Peter Criss, and Paul Stanley) all have KISS on the cover, but it isn’t KISS performing on the discs at all, rather than one member of the band. I guess the KISS name, sells better than their individual names. Anyway, it is hard to listen to this CD, and not compare the songs to KISS, especially with Paul Stanley being the voice of KISS. There are some songs on this record that could have easily been leftover KISS tunes. There are also some songs here that feel like a departure away from the rocking tunes that made KISS famous.
The tunes that are almost KISS like are “Tonight You Belong To Me“, “Move On“, “It’s Alright“, “Love In Chains” ,and “Goodbye“. With no surprise, these are my favorites on this disc. I have always like Stanley’s vocals, and his voices soars on the majority of the tunes. Bob Kulick (older brother of former KISS guitarist, Bruce Kulick) provides some tasty guitar licks on this album.
This album had a minor hit with the ballad, “Hold Me, Touch Me“. It might be my personal taste, but this song sounds dated in 2008, and does not hold up well. This sticky sweet tune sounds like it has more in common with the Doobie Brothers than KISS. I am sure this was a tune used to get couples slow dancing in the local discotheques back in the late 70’s.
To Paul Stanley’s credit, he wrote the majority of the material on this album, with a little bit of help from Mikel Japp. The song writing is pretty good on this record. In my opinion, this release, and the Ace Frehley solo disc, are the best out of the four KISS solo releases from ’78.
If you are a KISS fan, chances are you probably own this. If you don’t, you ought to pick this up.
1. Tonight You Belong To Me
2. Move On
3. Ain’t Quite Right
4. Wouldn’t You Like To Know Me?
5. Take Me Away (Together As One)
6. It’s Alright
7. Hold Me, Touch Me (Think Of Me When We’re Apart)
8. Love In Chains
Musicians on this CD are:
Paul Stanley – Lead Vocals, Background Vocals, Electric Guitar, Acoustic Guitar, E-bows, all guitars on “Hold Me, Touch Me”
Bob Kulick – Lead Guitar, Electric Guitar, Acoustic Guitar
Richie Fontanta – Drums (“Move On”, Wouldn’t You Like to Know Me”, “Ain’t Quite Right”, “Tonight You Belong To Me”)
Craig Krampf – Drums (“It’s Alright”, “Hold Me,Touch Me”, “Love In Chains”, Goodbye”
Carmine Appice – Drums (“Take Me Away”)
Steve Buslowe – Bass Guitar
Eric Nelson – Bass Guitar
Doug (Gling) Katsaros – Piano
Steve Lacey – Electric Guitar
Pepe Castro, Maaria Vidal, Diana Grasselli, Miriam Naomi Valle – Background Vocals
If you are a KISS fan of any kind, this CD needs no introduction, you probably own this on multiple formats. For those of you that don’t, keep reading!
KISS Alive may be the most successful live hard rock disc of all time. This Album has sold over 4 million copies since its initial release. Rolling Stone Magazine has this disc listed as one of their Top 500 Greatest Albums of All Time.
While I don’t agree with all of Rolling Stone’s choices, this is one that is a worthy selection.
Is KISS the greatest band of all time? Probably not. Is this the best live CD of all time? It is pretty damn close if it isn’t. The sound quality of this disc, is amazing, especially since it was recorded in ’75. I can listen to this 80 minute set repeatedly without getting bored.
This is truly a once in a lifetime live set, and I think the live energy of the KISS live performance is captured very well here.
If you are a hard rock fan, you owe it to yourself to pick up this excellent 2 disc set!
Rating: Out of 10
1. Watchin’ You
2. 100,000 Years
3. Black Diamond
4. Rock Bottom
5. Cold Gin
6. Rock And Roll All Nite
7. Let Me Go, Rock ‘N’ Roll