Tag Archives: Peter Criss

Peter Criss: Tossed And Turning!

 

Special Saturday Post! 

Check out my Pal Mikey and his Good Friend Uncle Meat’s spin on the KISS’s Unmasked  album for a Triple Header Post Today! More value bang for the Buck around these parts!

Click the Link Below Friends…

http://wp.me/p2hc2t-eHK

If you have been reading my Yammering for months now! Thanks I appreciate it. You would probably know or if you don’t recall my earliest favourite bands were AC/DC/Aerosmith/Cheap Trick/New England/Queen/Van Halen & KISS.

Kiss were the first band that I had started listening to back in 1977 and my first ever live show two years later in October 1979 on their Dynasty Tour which touched down in Duluth. You can read my first ever blog posted here at Arena Rock back in August 2014 here….https://superdekes.wordpress.com/2014/08/10/1979-the-return-of-kiss-2/

Seven months later (May 1980) Peter Criss gets the boot out of Kiss! Wowzers! Whut? This doesn’t happen to bands or does it? My 12-year-old noggin(1980) at the time couldn’t fathom it!

Sure Aerosmith had changed members but around 1980 they were caput kinda until 1982 when they released the criminally underrated Rock In A Hard Place.

By The time AC/DC came to me it was Back In Black! Sure there was a member change as Bon Scott died and Brian Johnson replaced him so that doesn’t count.

Cheap Trick,VH and Queen all had the four original guys that started the band so how does Paul Stanley,Ace Frehley and Gene Simmons do this?

Did Peter use all the Maybelline and the other guys in Kiss got pissy pants? Who knows! Dudes in bands don’t get divorced well not until now(1980) Silly young DeKEs!

I posted that clip at the top it’s interesting to hear $immon$ comments in regards to Criss quitting.  Simmons says Peter doesn’t want to tour anymore whereas Criss says the exact opposite that he will tour and he will be the Quarterback of the band  calling the shots! Did Peter even tour in the  early 80’s? Don’t be thinking so.

Who knows the truth? Like Nuno & Gary  from Extreme  said 11 years later in 1992.  There’s  Three Sides To Every Story.

1-Yours- which in this case is Gene & Paul

2-Mine- which would be Peter Criss

and #3 which is the …..

Truth– is there such a thing when a longtime member splits?Ha…none, all the way from Blackmore splitting from Deep Purple a couple of times to Sam Hagar being fired or quitting depending  on whose spin your believing. Tons of Drama with a lot of my favourite bands. You know the culprits! One of the funniest ones was the whole Motley Crue debacle of 92. I won’t elaborate as this is a KISS post but man I think I gotta post something about it in length….

Having said that….

 

When it comes to leaving a band it basically fizzles out the ex members career who splits while the band he quit from  continues and moves forward.

In Criss’ deal he splits Kiss when their career is in nosedive mode in North America but Pete soldiers on releases a solo album titled Out Of Control and it was like if Peter was playing his tune’s on the deck of the Titanic when it went  down in the Atlantic Ocean! No one cared even super Kiss Fanboys like myself and buddy Muc! We all passed on it.

Look Mikey! CD Japan!

Kiss hired Eric Carr(RIP) and after the dismal showing of 1981’s The Elder Kiss had a smidge bit of a bounce back with(the fantastic) Creatures Of The Night (1982)even Kiss knew they had to do something so off comes the war paint and viola a resurgence in sales and MTV video spins….

Peter Criss’ solo career went straight into the bars  and it wasn’t until Gene and Paul wanted to make quick cash decided to give Pete and Ace(Ace is another story for another time) another go round in 1996….

 

 

 

 

Kiss/Rock N Roll Over(1976)

Since It’s Halloween Today …Ummmm  How About Another KISS Review….???

Gonna try to keep this one short but when it comes to my fav KISS studio albums my TOP 3 would look like this..

1-Alive…..2-Rock N Roll Over….3-Creatures Of The Night..

Yeah I know Kiss Alive is a Live album(cough/cough) but we all know the deal as it was tweaked merciless in the studio but on any day of the week if we’re actually talking about studio albums I could flip between Number 2 and 3 all the time….

Starchild/Demon/Space Ace & Petey The Cat belt out some decent Kiss N Roll…. 

The Song’s…

1. “I Want You” Paul Stanley  3:04
2. “Take Me” Stanley, Sean Delaney  2:56
3. “Calling Dr. Love” Gene Simmons  3:44
4. “Ladies Room” Simmons  3:27
5. “Baby Driver” Peter Criss, Stan Penridge  3:40
6. “Love ‘Em and Leave ‘Em” Simmons  3:47
7. “Mr. Speed” Stanley, Delaney  3:18
8. “See You in Your Dreams” Simmons  2:34
9. “Hard Luck Woman” Stanley  3:34
10. “Makin’ Love” Stanley, Delaney  3:14
Total length:
33:18

Ah Man… I miss those under 34 minute albums and Rock N Roll Over delivers as Kiss teams up with producer Eddie Kramer and everyone roll’s up there sleeves and get down to it…

Stanley shows up with 5 tracks the best being Mr Speed that has a real cool like opening Riff and even though it’s a rock track it’s got a different vibe than say Take Me which is your typical Stanley straight ahead Goofy lyric rock track but on those day’s when its Goofy Time Take Me fill’s a void as it’s a Crash Course  in C#*K Rock.

$immon$ throws his 4 cents in with 4 pretty good rock tracks and he’s no ballad Guy well maybe the lyrics to Dr Love are about as close to a ballad as you could find but nice use of the cowbell on this track and Gene’s other tracks Ladies Room/Love Em Leave Em/See You In Your Dreams are just your simple straight ahead Chick Tracks! Not Rocket Science here Folk’s but catchy never the less!

The most interesting  track here has to be Hard Luck Woman written by Stanley but sung by Peter Criss who sounds like Rod Stewart and this is a well crafted rock track with nice acoustic playing with Criss’ drums propelling the Kiss Ship forward.

Speaking of Criss. He even gets his own tune here.  Baby Driver which is an ok track but still to elbow something on here with the Gene and Paul show calling the shot’s is saying something unlike Ace Frehley who did not contribute anything song wise but still plays some real good lead guitar on Rock N Roll Over….

 

 

What You Think Is Cool Is Not To Others

 

return-of-kiss-to-duluth

So being that today is October 6 2016 it serves an important date in my life as October 6 1979 was my first ever live  concert and that was KISS/John Cougar( Judas Priest were a no show! Gah!) at the Duluth Arena, 37 years ago=Yikes! Here’s some footage from the Dynasty Tour that I saw as a young Whipper Snapper! Cool to watch this now after so much time as KISS is unravelling at this point! Peter Criss plays Black Diamond at super speed while  hollering the lead vocals while Ace is completely Blitzed! Give Em Credit Folk’s at least Ace and Petey emphasized Rock N Roll.

My folks were real cool. Got my 11-year-old ass down to Duluth and friends of my parents eldest son and his girlfriend took a young geeked out Deke’s to the show and basically ruined me forever! Ha!

Actually I reviewed this show as my first ever post from Aug/14. Check it out …..https://superdekes.wordpress.com/2014/08/10/1979-the-return-of-kiss-2/

So Kiss was on the decline in 79(great album title wouldn’t it be? Decline In 79? Better yet a better name for my blog!) I didn’t know Kiss was hitting the skids. I was too young to notice. Kiss wanted it that way! I bought 1980s Unmasked ( sold it to my pal Tbone than shortly after required it back) 1981’s The Elder I bought it along with my pal Muc. I made it known publicly I had bought The Elder whereas Muc kept a lid on it….haha…

So once I entered Highschool (Grade 9/Sept 1981) Kiss was finished in the minds of many. Fair enough but being 13 just about to turn 14 I didn’t care so once day I wore my Kiss Dynasty Tour Shirt to school and I received t a tongue lashing and smart ass remarks about Kiss not being cool! What was I to do?

Like a smart 13-year-old I kept my Trap(mouth) shut! It did not matter as the Grade 11’s looked huge so I wasn’t gonna mess with em! One of them even doused me with their Mothers Perfume for a real beautiful like stench that lasted the whole afternoon at school! Ha!

Basically the Dynasty shirt got put away and it didn’t stop me from listening to Kiss but it did stop me from wearing my Dynasty shirt to school.

1982’s Creatures Of The Night was a step in the right direction but Kiss was still hurting as there Duluth show was cancelled due to lack of tickets being sold. Kiss though soldiered on and it’s funny as once the Makeup came off and Kiss released 1983’s Lick It Up many were back on board!

So much so that a fella named Jeff Law seen the Lick It Up show in Toronto and he picked me up a Lick It Up T-shirt from the show! He told me KISS packed out Maple Leaf Gardens….

Yup I wore it to school! No problem/No comments not even from the 5 Knuckleheads( who were in Grade 13 at this point) who were bugging me two years earlier!

Kiss slapped off the makeup had a bounce back while I took the Kiss T out of the drawer and wore back at school…….

This post you may think  has irked me all these years. No it has not one bit but it just goes to show you how you may feel about one thing whereas the General Public is not thinking how you re thinking….

Stick To Your Guns….

What comes around goes around comes around! 37 years later I came across this T-shirt site in the U.S and I clicked a bunch of bands and viola they had in stock the  retro Dynasty Tour T’s(see pic below)! This is an exact duplicate of the Shirt I bought at my first ever concert! Wowzers! Instant Purchase By Deke’s….

image

Try Dousing Me With Yo Mama’s Perfume Now MotherF**Ker!

As you were…

 

 

 

 

Shout It Out Loud/The Story Of KISS’s Destroyer

image

Picked up this book in Vancouver at the Indigo Book Store and I was surprised  to see this  as I didn’t even know it existed!(released in 2015) Amazing that author James Campion could write in a detailed amount 330 pages of one album being a Kiss album to boot and to keep me interested!

Just like another great book that I recently read and reviewed which was Greg Renoffs Van Halen  Rising book chronicling only VH’s early years up to 1978 which you can check out here….https://superdekes.wordpress.com/2016/02/05/rock-101van-halen-rising-by-greg-renoff/ Shows me that you can write a book detailing a band and even though that bands main guys may not be involved in the book you do your homework and seek out those around that had a hand in the beginnings of a band(Renoffs Book) or the Destroyer book that chronicles the making of what many consider the best recorded Kiss album(Destroyer)

Campion in his book details the Destroyer album from the origins pre Destroyer when Kiss was selling out theatre’s (pre Kiss Alive) but hardly selling any albums. Kiss and their 3 studio albums before Alive(self titled,Hotter Than Hell and Dressed To Kill) failed to make any kind of dent on the charts. Kiss and Neil Bogart(Boss man at KISS’s label Casablanca Records ) decided to release the double live Alive as Casablanca Records was in huge financial dire itself.

Of course Alive saves the day. Kiss hits huge pay dirt and wants to make a serious album. So the search begins!

Campion quotes resources and past interviews but the Ace(no pun) In The Hole here is he did direct interviews with Jay Messina,Corky Stasiak and Bob Ezrin. Those three are responsible for the Production end of things on Destroyer as they give excellent inside to the recording of the album from the beginning of the sessions to the end note of Do You Love Me.

I always knew that Frehley didn’t show up for Sweet Pain but how about 4 (maybe 5  tracks as they all have a hard time remembering if Wagner played on Flaming Youth)tracks that are on Destroyer that supposedly Ace didn’t play on!?

Which ones you ask?  Other than Sweet Pain. How about Great Expectations?  Mmmm Beth ?! The biggest shocker though is God Of Thunder? WHUT?!….No Ace….by the sounds of it!

Ezrin brought in Dick Wagner(RIP)! Who’s  Dick you ask? Well other than playing a ton of lead guitar for Alice Cooper Wagner supposed did a ton of uncredited lead guitar work on Aerosmith’s Get Your Wings album.  Another Ezrin produced album. If you weren’t cutting the mustard in the studio Bob would call Dick!

What might even be more shocking is that Peter Criss played drums on the whole album! Criss does add that Ezrin tortured him take after take to up Pete’s game!

Beth like all the songs on Destroyer  are detailed in the book with very in-depth info from Ezrin and Crew. What kind of guitars were used. What kind of Amps. The book even mentions that Ezrin had to toss Gene and  Paul out of the studio so Criss could get his lead vocal done on Beth as Demon And Starchild were smirking and making fun of Criss!

Back to the  God Of Thunder mystery.  Did Ace or didn’t Ace play on the track. Campion when writing the book sat down with Ezrin and they listened to the  solo in God Of Thunder! Ezrin couldn’t exactly remember if Ace had played it or didn’t but Ezrin added that if Dick Wagner says he did,than as Ezrin adds Wagner did!

Of course no one back than knew this and good on everyone involved on keeping a lid on it! Course Simmons probably had a lawyer drop in a few times to make sure everyone knew their place in regards as keeping Kiss as how we know them.  Imagine back than if everyone knew Ace didn’t play on certain Destroyer tracks…..

Ken Kelly who did the awesome painting of Kiss on the cover is even interviewed! No stone is left unturned here folks!

Campion as well updates on currently what ever one involved with the making of Destroyer is currently up to.

Also what was real interesting is towards the end of the book Campion puts in his detective hat and if you recall on the Destroyer studio  version of Detroit Rock City of the dude getting into his car and hearing on the radio that a person was killed and of course by the end of the song the car skids out and  you hear the car crash.

Interviews at the time (1976) had Stanley saying that a Kiss fan had died on their way to a show. So Campion started digging around through various archived media to see if Stanley’s claim actually happened or didn’t! Give this dude credit man he did his homework and well I’m not telling you what the outcome was! Was it a true story or was Stanley hyping the KISS P.R Hype Machine Circa 76!

Not saying….

Hey! I can’t tell everyone everything.

Ok here’s a little food for thought!

Well how about I leave you with one more little detail! When Destroyer was first released it shot up the charts and shot down the charts real quick! Kiss freaked out. They were wondering did they over do it with too much bombastic flair that went over their fans heads? At one point there was talk of the whole album after its release being Destroyed and yanked off the market!

Beth being out as a 45 single believe it or not saved this albums ass!  You can also see why Kiss returned to producer Eddie Kramer and released the fantastic yet straight forward Rock N Roll Over! Don’t know how true all of this is but you know how some of those Kiss guys roll. I tend to believe it that at one point Destroyer could have been Destroyed! (Imagine how much those copies would be going for in 2016!)

If you come across this book pick it up or track it down on the Amazons of the world. Well researched  and it was cool to read a whole book on just one album!

 

 

SONIC WAVES …KISS/ Alive 2

image imageJust pics no  video as everybody and there dog has heard Kiss/ Alive 2 right!? Also since we’re talking about it how about a review of a different sorts so to speak as this was my first ever KISS record in early 1979!

I’m gonna talk about this one just as how I remember it! Let’s head back into the Time Machine!

KISS growing up in the 70s was huge! They were in all kinds of print press like Circus and Creem and even teenybopper magazines like 16 magazine. So of course a pal of mine whose name was John Young had the KISS Originals(first three Kiss studio records packaged as a triple set) and when I seen the cover of the Originals I drooled! Holy hell who are these 4 Kabuki like warriors with the makeup!

So two years after its initial release (1977) boom Kiss Alive 2 enters the hallowed halls of *** Hodder Ave/Tbay  (my home for many a years) and Wowzers here’s Kiss Alive 2 ….I’m skipping a few tracks but hey you will get the just of it!

DETROIT ROCK CITY-Some Kiss guy announces ‘You wanted the best …..” We all know the rest right and we’re off and there’s the crowd roaring and the opening riff of Detroit Rock City and man the crowd is jacked I mean the audio of it. To this day when I listen to it I find the crowd too much if it’s even a Kiss crowd or the supposed sample Super Bowl 77 crowd! Who knows and well I see what Kiss is doing there making it seem bigger and better and were louder than all you other acts out there! For me at age 11 going on 12 …it friggin worked.

KING OF THE NIGHTIME WORLD is launched and the Kiss Live chops (is it live ?) well for me at the time  they sound live and I’m blown away. Holy geez are Ace/Paul pulling down some dual leads at the end of this tune! Yeah they are…..

LADIES ROOM- ok next to Creatures Of The Night I would have to say this is Simmons best sung record and its a live one to boot!(so they say) I mean check out the top left pick of Simmons where he has all that  blood and shit spewing out of his trap! Man he’s a mess! But being 12! Umm. Mom can I sleep tonight with the light on after looking at that pic!

CALLING DR LOVE-Kiss sounds like they know what there doing on this track! Better yet Peter Criss pulls out the cowbell and also by the time I got around to getting the  studio albums its evidently clear that these live versions are played at zip speed compared to the studio offerings! Party stimulants abound I’m sure on that Kiss Alive 2 Tour of 1977!

SHOCK ME- My fav Kiss guy Space Ace Frehley loads up (literally ) and blasts off with his lead vocal and guitar solo on Shock Me ! It’s a great track and a bunch of mish mashing notes make up his guitar solo and of course the guitar is smoking during it !

HARD LUCK WOMAN &  TOMORROW & TONIGHT- were I guess recorded in the studio and than the live crowd was slapped down in the background  so Kiss could fill up the live portion of the album without repeating tracks that were on the first Kiss Alive  from 2 years earlier! I wonder what went thru Simmons and Stanley’s heads at the time when they did this stunt! Yeah I know and you know what went through there heads,the answer was….$$$$$$$$$$$$ and more $$$$$$$$!

I STOLE YOUR LOVE-was this not the tour opener for This tour? Except for Alive 2 it’s the opening song on Side 3 ! Good straight ahead rocker track!

BETH- so Petey the cat man gets his limelight complete with prerecorded symphony and Its his time to shine while Gene And Paul count the $$$$ backstage and Ace well I dunno …….

GOD OF THUNDER-Demon Gene the lord of the wasteland slams foreword on this Sabbathey? sounding track complete with Peter Criss drum solo and I thought this was the greatest drum solo until I heard Neal Peart 2.5 years later(1981) totally mash his drum set on his solo on YYZ! Anyways Criss does his deal and were headed to the finish line with …

SHOUT IT OUT LOUD- Gene and Paul want us to all Shout it Out Loud! You gotta have a party! This song we have all heard and the live portion album ends with Kiss Loves You Goodnight!

So Kiss decides hey we got 15 minutes on side 4 lets get the yaya’s out so to speak and each guy does a tune well except Criss cuz well listen to his solo album from 1978 this will explain to you the listener why there are no studio tracks of his on Alive 2!

AMERICAN MAN- Paulie struts his self and tells us he is the Amerian Man! Ummm is this really Kiss playing on this? You know they should have scrapped the solo records and done it this way …wait a minute they should have done a double album of new studio material with one record (sides 1&2)being material for Stanley/Simmons and gulp Criss! Where as sides 3&4 would have been Aces solo record which to me is one of the best studio Kiss records ever!

LARGER THAN LIFE- it’s Simmons and its not a bad tune! Heard better (Radioactive) heard worse(his whole Asshole solo album) it’s Gene circa 77 ego included!

ROCKET RIDE- yeah man and this is why Ace is my fav Kiss guy until he split in 1982! He just steams out this track I mean does it get any better in the Frehley Hall Of Fame with lyrics like ‘ baby wants it fast baby wants a blast she wants a Rocket Ride!” Plus his solo is so skiderish its cool! Ace in 77 you were the deal!

ANY WAY YOU WANT IT-cover tune and Stanley and crew rock it up but yeah its a cover!

IN CONCLUSION -rewind like i said to early 79 and this is the shit for a kid whose 11! Kiss layed to down the law with a gimmick and it royally paid off till the public got sick of Kiss and there deal in the early 80s! Except for me i still littered Gene and Paul’s pockets with dollars not cents!

 

3/4’s KISS Filler Week….KISS/Unmasked

It’s time for the first ever  3/4’s KISS Filler Week here at Arena Rock and well hopefully I don’t get sued by $tanley and $immon$ and if I do I will tell the lawyers that Mikey Ladano made me do it! Hahahaha….no he didn’t this is all me….

Why Kiss? Umm why not sez I! I have been buying Kiss albums since 1978 and man I purchased 3 kinda snoozy duds so after all these years I’m gonna spout off and tell Ya why….

Also Kiss has  something like 450 albums(ha) so to throw 3 under the bus that ain’t too shabby…oh wait out of those 450 albums 420 of em are Greatest Hits comps!(don’t get me started!)

One last thing,don’t expect the expected in my 3/4’s Filler Week here at Kiss HQ!

1980 and oh man I had just seen Kiss live for the first time in 1979 read my very first written blog here about it.https://superdekes.wordpress.com/2014/08/10/1979-the-return-of-kiss-2/

So I’m still in fantasy Kissville in 1980 and Kiss unleash Unmasked except for me being a total delusional 13-year-old at the time of Unmasked’s release Kiss and more importantly their success was starting to wane people were tired of them(except me) people were buying other albums instead of Kiss(except me) my pal John Young had moved on to Led Zep(except me) get the picture!

So Gene,Paul,Ace and Petey fool me and call the album Unmasked it has a goofy album cover so when I bought it I thought ‘hey there’s probably a picture of them inside without the  make up!”  Nope I officially pronounce myself  a sucker!

Hey Gene and Paul you fooled my ass back than….not now!

Even though Petey Criss is pictured on the cartoonish goofy cover its Anton Fig that smacks the skins….everyone also involved with Kiss knows this(except me!)

IS THAT YOU-Wowzers did Stanley chirp the word Bitch??! Actually this is a good opener(not written by Kiss but by some dude named Gerald McMahon?) The production though is sterile sounding(thanks Vini Ponica). Kiss for some reason always had weak sonics on their studio 70s output(except Destroyer) why I have no idea as they were rolling in the cash but having said that the verses are good the pre  chorus Paul gets into that falsetto bullshit but saves the day with the chorus! Check out the live video posted of new boy on the drums Eric Carr slamming the song forward! Kudos to Kiss for doing a song about a female serial killer who will stick you with her knife! Too bad the album skids into track two which is……

SHANDI- umm dunno I mean this is too obvious! Back than I skipped this track nowadays when I listened to this song to jog my memory on this track I giggled! Stanley waters down this track with some pure sap! Actually this tune would have found a home on a Poison album Hahahaha…..Bandanna Micheals and Shandi a marriage made in hell! With a cat dragged in!

TALK TO ME- you know Space Ace always showed up with good tracks and especially since he recorded  one of the best Kiss albums ever Ace gives me hope boom he starts off the tune with his sound and his riff and its a good track. Thanks Ace for not losing your rock balls while Stanley’s Rock balls were hitting the town with SHANDI!

NAKED CITY- umm no…..all I gotta say is Simmons is losing steam here. Gene I’m sure was dreaming up of hiring Chris Makepeace(Meatballs) to star in The Elder movie! Ha…..focus on the rock Genie! I mean yeah this song is just a mid tempo leftover like tune from say Rock N Roll Over …no substance but the chorus is actually good,the rest of the song  …it’s just there…

WHAT MAKES THE WORLD GO ROUND- Paul is panicking he’s trying to write hits and its kinda missing, this one is close though I mean after the Gene serves me the sonic puke Sandwhich in Naked City at least Paul tries to recover it with this song but It comes up short not bad not good,it’s just there! The chorus though is not too bad! Thats about it…bad,good,bad,good,Blah….

TOMORROW-power pop rocker track! Stanley at the time should have sold this tune to Rick Springfield! Paul is trying to save this from the scrap heap! Tomorrow is once again ok! Nothing earth shattering just same ol same ol in Kiss land. Single you want single whadda mean no one wants single! That’s Tomorrow. Stanley and company must have wanted to pack it in when ACDC dropped Back In Black in 1980 as well! Everyone was aborting the S.S Kiss Cruise (except me ) HEY how come no one tossed me a life-preserver?

TWO SIDES OF THE COIN-Space Ace delivers another keeper and man looking back they should have let him write the Unmasked  album! Of course the Demon and Starchild would have canned that idea!Good song and this could have easily slid on nicely on side 2 of his fantastic solo release from 1978!

SHES SO EUROPEAN- Simmons comes up with a simple straight ahead rocker that’s so so. Who knows If these tracks would have had some better production behind them perhaps they would have soared sonically. But nope Vini Ponica you can thank for this sonic sterile tank job!

EASY AS IT SEEMS-Gene and Peter or umm Anton start off this tune and its Kiss trying to be groovey! Does it work Nope…..is that really Simmons on the bass here?

TORPEDEO GIRL-this song has the best Opening on this record! Man 35 years later and i still laugh! That fuckin Ace man what a card! The song though is late 70s cheese schlock kinda surprising that this tune was written by Ace but you know what between 1978 -1980 the songs that he contributed solo wise and Kiss wise he can be forgiven! Crank the vid folks! Ha ….

YOUR ALL THAT I WANT-Simmons bids adieu with another mid tempo rocker. Nothing really good here to report! Just the same Ol same OL Kiss …..

IN CONCLUSION- Unmasked has not one but two significant things that come back to me all these years later

1-this was the first Kiss album to me to feature a real dumbo like cartoon page for a cover! Me being 13 at the time and I even knew that they were coming off the rails songwise not that I understood that back than but I just liked Dynasty more back in 1980 but Queen,Cheap Trick and AC/DC were kicking my senses pretty good.

2- Unmasked also presents itself as the first album I ever sold in my life at 14! Tbone had just  gotten a record player but all he had wa as couple of snoozed K-Tel compilations records! I needed some cash for a magazine so I sold Unmasked for like $3 or close to it! Hahaha….Tbone was staunch with his  cash back than I really had to sell verbally Unmasked to him ….I almost drove myself crazy! He relented probably felt sorry for me and flipped me the $3! Two months later I rebought Unmasked back from Tbone! Shit man Tbone was running a Pawn Shop before the word even existed!

SONIC WAVES…..Ace Frehley/Ace Frehley

2014 holy heck! Who woulda thunk  it that Space Ace still has a solid album of rock n roll left in his tank with his current release (Space Invaders). If you’re chuckling and don’t believe me check out LeBrains and Ulitmate Festival Guide for there reviews, I kid you not! Now since currently a lot of folks out there have a musical boner for Ace again let’s go back in time shall we and take a little look see at that solo  release of his from 1978 that a lot of fans from the Army consider his (and perhaps) Kiss’ greatest work.

For me personally, I say since this falls under the Kiss empire of 1978, this is one record I can listen front to back still in the year of 2014. What I mean is I loved Kiss and still follow em( There latest Monster was a strong record) years ago for every Love Gun there was a Than She Kissed Me,For every Detroit Rock City there was Beth, For every Save Your Love there was I Was Made For Loving You.For every Uh All Night well there was a bit of filler on that album(Asylum). See my pattern on each of those albums I mentioned (Love Gun,Destroyer,Asylum and Dynasty) was for me( personally my opinion only folks) always a track i wasn’t into . Some albums of there’s were very solid(Creatures Of The Night,Revenge,Rock N Roll Over) I guess as Kiss was sometimes cranking out 2-3 albums a year they should be forgiven right?! Like I could do better!

Ok everybody climb aboard and let’s go for a Rocket Ride……

RIP IT OUT-Ace comes out of the gates firing on all cylinders with a stormer of a track! When I was 11 I heard this song and it blew my little grade school mind. The spaceman sings,plays guitar,writes the songs, produces,does everything but the drums(Anton Fig) holy crap my little 11 yr old mind is gonna blow!!! Anton rips on this track along with Aces solo!

SPEEDING BACK TO MY BABY- hahaha what do fast cars,illicit  drugs washed done with alcohol produce? A dude racing back to his baby at the speed of sound. By track two Ace is flying the songs are cranking and he pulls off of one my favourite solos of his ever..a Sonic Boom is overheard!

SNOWBLIND- Weather forecast update…..cloudy with a ton of snow on tap! This is the Space Man singing about something he knows about and it ain’t the weather kids! Cool song, Aces vocals are sounding well spaced out and also the song kicks Into overdrive during the solo I guess Ace was trying to get around that weather watch! Hail the Space Man!

OZONE-after Ace cleans off the dashboard of his car from all that snow(shoulda kept the windows up)  he trips Into another dimension and basically it’s a song about Gettin high and it’s ok to feel high n dry cause well the Ace man likes to fly. Super cool verse and than the song shifts into a Sabbathy Ooooooozoooooone…that’s the thing about this record Ace says it’s ok to get high and why would we stop him!

WHATS ON YOUR MIND- holy crap Ace chugs this song along with Antons drums and Ace is concerned about his woman! In other words Ace says “hey baby,I have no mind! So what’s on your mind?”. Ace mixes a cool blend of acoustic and electric on this track.

NEW YORK GROOVE- the single…cool song and a cover version as well but if I never looked at the credits I woulda never known. Ace makes this his own tune and one song that a lot of folk associate with him. Ace is back ….back in the New York Groove! Plus when I seen Kiss live back in 79 Ace played his cool light bulby guitar during this tune. Ace was just downright cool.

I’M IN NEED OF LOVE-Ace steps it up on this tune. It’s a total cool groover of a track that chugs down  the Anton Fig line and him and Ace collide at the solo and it goes from cool to ultra cool! Aces vocal are wickedly good for this selection of material.

WIPED OUT- Anton blazes the path at the beginning of song and Ace throws out a Wiped Out vocally and were off back into party mode after a three  track hiatus! Pass the party treats Ace it’s 3 am and it’s time to wake up the stiffs that are lazing around on the couch eating there Doritos ! Cool use of rhythm guitar in this track sounds 70s ish but hey this is from the 70s!

FRACTURED MIRROR- Ace says it’s 7:30 am everyone pick up your crap,collect those empties and go home.The party is officially over. Nice Little quiet musical with the use of acoustic featured. Ace my friend you done well.

IN CONCLUSION- Folks…Ace stepped up and nailed it out of the park! I mean the guy back in 78 was a caged animal creatively speaking and than he unleashed this awesome album that for me was far superior than the three other guys that he was employed with. Ace made a classic rock album that appealed to everyone and still does. I mean Ace cooks up a real cool batch of tunes and look at the next Kiss album that followed the solo albums ( Dynasty) Ace thru down a cool cover of the Stones 2000 Man along with his two originals Hard Times and  Save Your Love which could have been on this solo release . Dude may have been Wiped Out but he was in control(somewhat)….