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Tommy’s Love Gun Gets Revenge on His Elders on the KISS Talk Show Three Sides of the Coin

In episode 32, July 16, 2013, this week we discuss some more meaningful KISS albums and sharing our personal stories from each release. For Mitch, KISS REVENGE. For Tommy, KISS LOVE GUN. For Michael, KISS CREATURES OF THE NIGHT. We also spend time discussing KISS MUSIC FROM THE ELDER.

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  • Robert K. from Kississippi

    Good show guys….was interesting hearing your own stories about Love Gun, Elder, etc. I can remember when the Elder was first released on CD around 1989. At that point, I was 16-17 years old and had been a KISS fan for only around 3 or 4 years. During the mid to late 80’s, the Elder was almost nearly impossible to find in music stores before it’s first CD release. I first heard it on a crappy worn out cassette (with no cover) I’d gotten from someone and didn’t know what to make of it except they really sounded different compared to the other albums. So one day in 1989, I’m in a mall out of town and go into a music store and go straight to the KISS section of tapes and then I see a CD section….lo and behold, there’s the Elder! Now keep in mind, I had yet to even own my first cd player (which I ended up getting later that same year). I believe the Elder CD was around $11.99 and I had to have it and bought it on the spot. I remember being pissed that it didn’t have the song lyrics or a pic of the band inside the cover, but otherwise I really thought I had something special at the time. Later on, I finally got my first CD player along with Lillian Axe ‘Love & War’ as my second CD. I remember playing the hell out of the Elder CD marveling at the crisp clear sound compared to the crappy, worn out cassette…trying to figure out some of the lyrics yet digging the songs anyway mostly because it was something different and I liked the lush orchestra music on some songs that gave them a bigger sound. Sure, the ‘concept’ story didn’t make much sense to my young teenage ears, but it didn’t matter…was just thrilled to have it finally with a good quality sound that didn’t wear out over time with each time played.

    I also remember the original Creatures of the Night makeup album cover being hard to find once the non-makeup version with Bruce was released in ’85. I still think the original makeup cover
    is one of their best album covers ever….and the same can be said for the album itself….probably in my top 3.

    As for Mitch’s collectables, I enjoy seeing what KISS stuff he has lying around. You could maybe call it “Mitch’s Monster Mancave Madness”! 😉

    I think a cool future episode topic would be for all 3 of you to take turns showing your top 3 personal favorite KISS items….the story behind them, what they mean to you, etc.

  • John Kopriwa

    Hi Guys,

    Out of the 4 albums my album of choice and best and fond memories is no other than Revenge. I am a Kiss fan since 1987 but the long brake between HITS and Revenge and the death of Eric Carr and his last video (one of my favour God gave…) really made me proud to be a Kiss fan and I had the feeling we all back on top and the Kiss Army flag will fly. Sadly Eric passed two months after the MTV debut the song in Nov. And to the same thing I have experience since 87 Kiss is always overshadowed by everything, Guns and Roses, Motley Def Leopard and fucking Bon Jovi, this time Eric barely got a mention in the news because Freddy had to die a day before him. At least God gave went to number 4 in the UK charts and placed itself in the top 10 in rest of Europe and Australia. The anticipation of buying the new Kiss album Revenge was a drag as it got postponed till May. I remember buying the album on day of release as (listen out Mitch) cassette, cd and vinyl. As of today I have also the limited Japanese cd in box and booklet, the blue vinyl, the Revenge store poster with all signatures, limited white vinyl 12″ single UK, Cassette singles of God gave, Unholy, Domino, Every time…, and the US Kiss Killer Kuts promo cassette, as well on cd US promo Unholy with three songs from Creatures, singles from Unholy, Every time, Domino and the only release from Japan 3″ Unholy, plus many promo cd from UK and Australia, the only thing I have missing is the tour book as I only went to a Revenge show in London UK and they have used the HITS stage. Most of the stuff is signed by Eric as I met him many times during Expos, and Alice Cooper tour stops. The Revenge era is my favour as you guys already mentioned, Kiss was a force to recon with, they looked like leaders and rock and roll gods with no one been able to reach them, no fancy pants or some lipstick, raw, cool back to old school. I have such a fond memory and I was actually disappointed that they started the reunion tour. We know now why but for me at that time I could not understand, books like C.K. Lent opened the horizon and it was shocking that’s why I have such a high respect for Paul in particular as he always maintained and gave Kiss fans the impression we where the fans of the greatest band in the world and we where, but it must be hard for Paul to watch each album slip thru the charts and also the tours, and Revenge was the finest and best stage, show, song selection and the band was a band , it was not just Paul and a few munitions, I love Bruce he is my guitar hero, but Gene really he was just a base player he may as well played with Bon Jovi. I have seen Reunion, Farewell, Rock the Nation and now Monster but Revenge still kicks, and just imagine, Revenge now with Bruce, Eric, Paul and Gene and put the money in pyro and do the same show, I would pay big bux to see this again with cash behind it. One thing to mention as well on Revenge and why it makes it a such a great record and tour is Paul is using the sexiest guitar PS10 Ibanez and Gene finally has a great one too. So Revenge boost for me the best songs and reminds me at a very special time in my life and I think sometimes I can still smell the nice early summer air when I play Revenge. Mitch do you have The Originals 8 track? still looking.

  • Mitch’s Segment Name : ” MITCH’S KHYSCZ SHIT”
    I created a splash page for laughs at:
    http://medek1.deviantart.com/art/Mitch-s-KHYSCZ-Shit-386224193
    If you enjoy please comment

    • tony

      tks Chris….love rock n skull over!!!

  • steve

    Mitch segment..call it …Mitch’s Swag

  • Brad

    Very good webcast guys. I discovered it on youtube while thumbing through vids of Ronnie James Dio actually. First two I saw were the ones with Ed & Frank. Really cool material presented in a down to earth, accessible & relaxed manner, and I appreciate that aspect of the webcast most. As a result, I’ve been sitting here off & on throughout the week watching all of them when the free time arises.

    This particular one seems to be a good one to chime in on with the homework, even though this show is from earlier in the summer & it’s September now. For me, it’s a good one to start with because of the nature of the conversation & my connection to the conversation. Unlike you guys, I am not an industry insider or deeply connected to the band in any way. I am a musician who began playing at 4 who became a KISS fan after I saw them on the Mike Douglas show.

    We’re also in the same age group, and the conversations you have week to week sound like so many of the conversations I’ve had with the people I know. It’s as if conversations of my own life were being held by other people and made public – so that’s the personal connection you have made with me, and that’s why I choose this older webcast to respond on – because it is about albums that have a meaningful connection personally.

    After Mike Douglas, I was in a shop called Tennessee Joe’s. It was a locally owned weird five & dime store owned by an eccentric fellow who bought up several store fronts in the town i grew up in- and therefor his “shop” spanned several store fronts over an entire block in the old down town area. He sold everything, including vinyl. That’s where I found my 1st KISS record in nowhere Oklahoma,

    Alive!

    I took it home & sat down with it and was completely captivated. Wow – i thought – an entire KISS album after having nothing more than a memory of the Mike Douglas appearance (the days before home video recording). I immediately sat down behind my drumset & learned every song in the order they were presented on the double record set. Learning Deuce changed my life forever & made me who I am today. Each song I learned progressed my drumming ability more & more, and i was utterly elated to learn the 100,000 years drum solo particularly. The entire album is full of a great selection of live material that any drummer of any age could advance their own skill set- and i was a child, a baby, so this quintessential Old Testament formed me as a musician & a human being more deeply & profoundly than anything else in my life.

    In addition to the vinyl itself, the entire album was a souvenir, a memento of historic live performances not only of KISS themselves, but of an innovative era in music & cultural history. The gatefold opened up as if it were made personally just for the person who was holding it in their hands, the booklet provided eye-candy that fueled the imagination & caught the energy of the young band, and the cover had this outlandish performance shot, with the back of the huge arena that focused on the fans who were lucky enough to be part of history. Even the military-esque stenciled lettering gave the entire package a real raw authentic feel. It’s as if the font was lifted right off the bands gear cases.

    I ran that vinyl into the ground, and i mastered the drum parts then formed my own KISS tribute band. We were little kids but it was a great growing up experience that made that moment in time magickal.

    Then my older sister met my future brother in law who bought the next LP because he enjoyed a song that was getting lots of air-play. But he hated the rest of the album, so he gave it to me as a holiday gift.

    That album was Destroyer.

    More fire for a child’s imagination, more songs to learn for a young drummer. Coming off the live experience, Bob’s recordings of KISS were a completely different experience coupled with the brilliantly iconic hellish artwork of Ken Kelly & the sturdy inside slip cover that had the HUGE KISS Army logo with song lyrics on it. What???!? This band has an ARMY??? WTF?! Does anyone these days have half a clue the impact that has on an 8 year old child? OH MY STARS. Detroit Rock City was a fantastic song that drew a direct connection to my Alive! record that ended in a horrific cacophony that exploded into King of The NightTime world. Then God of Thunder just falls on you & enshrouds you in the foot stomping darkness of the Demon. Flip the LP over & it seemed as if Flaming Youth was written JUST FOR YOU, and the album wraps up with the thunder of Do Ya Love Me – and whoa. What just happened to me? It’s over? Flip it over & listen again and again. Magick for a child – food for the budding musician. This LP was doubly meaningful for me, because my big sisters took me to my first KISS concert & I got to meet them not just once but twice. Once at an in store thing at a shop called The Record Bar, then again randomly by chance at some restaurant. Alive! fed me my first defining musical moments in my life, and Destroyer followed through with bona fide childhood watermarks.

    Being a child, I didn’t always have money to nourish my appetite for KISS, so I didn’t get to purchase another LP until Alive II, and wow what a keepsake for an unforgettable era. Alive II exposed me to not only material from Rock-n-Roll Over & Love Gun, but also to what it means to be a KISS fan. I took that LP to school for show & tell, and got so much hell from the hateful people in the small town I grew up in. That album, to them, defined who I was forever more. I came to school with the Gene tat on my arm & got jumped on the play ground, not just that day, but for random days from that day forward. The teacher stole my album, kept it until my parents forced her to give it back under threat of filing charges against her – it was returned very beat up, not unlike myself. From that day on, I was a different person to that town & in their eyes, was provided with a stigma to deal with in public & all social situation forever more.

    Creatures of The Night was very meaningful for me because it was as if KISS was not only reclaiming anything that they thought they lost whether real or imagined, it came on the heels of a new religious extremism that was threatening basic human freedoms & civil rights, and the LP spoke to that in the face of of pre-PMRC censorship. Not only that, sonically, it was bombastic in an over the top way that seemed to give a middle finger to this uncivilized tone these extremists were using to attack any and everyone. It’s a defining album for Eric Carr with its thunder & stomp, and that was very satisfying for me as a drummer. Creatures was significant for me because as I grew & became more socially aware, KISS answered that social awareness for me & provided a great soundtrack for that while giving the KISS fan in me a fantastic & meaningful album. It’s also significant because I began to see my childhood melt away, and part of that was by seeing the KISS machine fall apart with only half of the original band left. Part of that rude awakening was going to the Creatures show & expecting Ace, but being introduced to Vinnie instead. It’s as if it was a forced right of passage by having the wool pulled away from one’s eyes…. Toto the doggie pulling away the curtain so that you can see the ugly truth rather than the illusion one had been fed. It was a rebellious album & it fit my life as a teenager very well.

    Another very significant KISS album for me would undoubtedly have to be Revenge.

    I had just started a KISS zine called KISS Hell, and for me & my publishing partner, the zine world was sort of self-therapy to deal with the rubbish of everything that came after Creatures. I particularly tired very hard to like that era, went to all the shows, bought the LPs & so on, but just felt shafted by people i admired whom i felt were phoning it in & didn’t care anymore. I certainly expanded my taste in music at that time & had for all intents & purposes moved on as fan, a person & a musician. But I was a young adult who wanted to hang on very much to the KISS magick of yesterday, and felt a need to fan the fires to recreate that magick any way possible. I had just discovered the underground world of zines as well as the well-networked fanatical KISS fans who i felt kinship with, and I observed these zines making what I felt was a meaningful impact upon our community, and I wanted to contribute anything possible to what seemed like a grassroots movement that was going somewhere. Revenge came out at this time as if to answer “YES -!”My sister worked in a hospital, and everyone there knew of Eric’s condition & followed it closely. I was on her hospital floor to meet with her to take her out for lunch when I observed the doctors & other staff clustered around a TV that was announcing Eric’s death. I was personally devastated on several levels. I always felt he would pull through, and I really liked him as a human being & wanted to meet him because he seemed not only the most accessible & personable, but because he felt like a kindred spirit as drummer & a human being. Revenge was not just a showcase of KISSes collective talent, especially since it seemed that Bruce finally found himself within the framework of KISS, but it was reclamation & modernization, an evolution of maturity & growth for a band not often associated with any of those adjectives. It was nice to see Bob & Vinnie contribute something to KISS that this around, was undeniably better than what either of them before had offered, and honestly, it was nice to see Gene & Paul contribute something that wasn’t phoned in, half-hearted & just way to stay visible. Throughout the entire period from Creatures to Revenge, the only person who was consistent or worth a good goddamn at all was Eric. And this had became his epitaph as it was the dawn of hope for band that to me, and others, seemed a washed up joke & shadow of their former glory of being actually relevant. Revenge, for me, gave them relevance again, and gave me optimism amidst the sadness of Eric’s death & the hope of the underground KISS world of zines I had walked into. I will never forget the feelings this album evoked in me… and I often imagine the alternative time-lines that spring up from this particularly crucial fork in the road not just for them, but for all of us.

    Thank you once again, Tommy, Mitch, Mike not only for show & banter, but for the very personal connections you have forged with your discussions. I just discovered your webcast, so I am playing catch up by going forward to the present from the back. There are a lot of them to watch, but I hope to get up to where you are currently very soon so that if I do have any further commentary to offer that it’s concurrent with where you are presently.

    Stay true, Stay real & keep up the good work my fellow brothers.

    Brad