GENE SIMMONS REVEALS SONGS TITLES FROM UPCOMING KISS CD
July 9, 2009
If Kiss fans are fretting that the band's upcoming eight Canadian shows will pale in comparison to the 60-city megatour planned for this fall -- when the band will unveil new outfits and new material -- bassist/vocalist Gene Simmons says not to worry.
The band behind "Love Gun" has no shortage of ammunition in store for its quick jaunt north of the border, which begins Friday, the reliably entertaining Simmons told The Canadian Press in a telephone call from his Los Angeles office.
"Kiss always has the same firepower," Simmons said.
"This is less of a tour and more of a warmup -- you know, when you go to the gym and really push it hard and sweat it. "
"No coasting. We're deadly serious about this."
The Canadian trek will see the band playing festival stages and arenas in Sarnia, Ont., Orillia, Ont., Windsor, Ont., Ottawa, Quebec City, Montreal and Halifax.
But Simmons said the band can adapt its elaborate show to whatever surroundings necessary.
"We're like the Transformers -- with much longer tongues," he said. "We can get bigger and smaller, so physically we're able to ... set up and do our shows in an arena or stadium."
The fall will also mark the release of Kiss's first studio album since 1998's "Psycho Circus."
Simmons refused to provide the title for the new record, but otherwise wasn't coy with details.
He said the new disc will feature track titles including "Russian Roulette," "Modern Day Delilah," and "Stand."
Lead guitarist Tommy Thayer will write and sing his first song on the album, while drummer Eric Singer will also get his first opportunity to sing a lead vocal on an original song.
Simmons also promises there were no outside writers working on the Paul Stanley-produced disc.
And as for the sound of the album?
"No strings, no keyboards, no synths, no tambourines, no nothing -- just meat and potatoes," Simmons said.
In addition to the new record and tour, Simmons said he's still on the prowl for Canadian acts for his label, Simmons Records.
In November, Simmons announced that in partnership with Universal Music Canada, he planned to develop and sign Canadian bands. Soon afterward, he began soliciting online demos from unsigned Canuck acts.
On Sunday, he posted a notice on his website saying he was flying up to Vancouver to sign his first act, though he's since declined to elaborate. He will say that he has two more Canadian bands he'd like to sign after that.
Meanwhile, the band is planning on taking some time off toward the end of the summer.
"We have a lot going on, I mean there's Kiss M&Ms, there's Kiss Dr. Pepper, there's Kiss everything, soon it's gonna be Planet Kiss," Simmons notes.
In late September, the band will head out on its North American tour, which Simmons promises will include a return trip north of the border. "We're gonna hit Canada again," Simmons said, "because you've been very bad and you need to be punished."
Courtesy of www.sleazeroxx.com
PAUL STANLEY TALKS ABOUT NEW ALBUM, "THIS IS KISS, CLASSIC KISS"
July 9, 2009
PAUL STANLEY TALKS ABOUT UPCOMING KISS CD
If you been reading KISSONLINE, it's no surprise to you now. We ARE done recording our new album.
What might well be a surprise is that at the least, the album is right up there with our best. As much as we may have tried at some other times to achieve this, the chemistry, line-up or lack of total commitment from everyone might have been cause for it being impossible. Not now. Not this time.
I know that when you hear it you will agree.
Before we began the album, I said I was only interested in doing it if I produced and we followed set ground rules; Total commitment by everyone, pure guitar driven KISS, no outside writers, no outside players and my opinion and say would always be final.
All said yes and I know we'd all say we've never had more fun together.
All four of us made this our priority. Everyone was involved everyday. From the first day of writing to the last day of recording everyone was there giving 100% to making this the album we knew we had in us. I've never seen Gene more selfless (yes...Gene!), focused or harder working. His bass playing, songs and overall contribution help to make this the album you've wanted for so long. Without his spirit, this wouldn't have been possible.
As far as Tommy's guitar playing, he took this chance at bat to consistently hit it out of the park. His playing is fiery and rooted firmly in our history, while making his own mark. Tommy's singing, writing contributions and total involvement made clear what's been missing for so long.
In the twenty years I've known Eric, I've never seen him this relaxed or creative. His playing is the foundation of our next step forward. Relentless and full of spit and swagger. Many lead singers don't have Eric's chops or range. He's singing great on his track and all over the album.
Wait till you hear what we've got for you.
Do I sound proud of everyone and what we've done together? I am, and I should be.
Eleven songs. Eleven winners.
This IS KISS. Classic KISS.
It's been a long time coming.
MESSAGE FROM GENE SIMMONS
BEST KISS ALBUM IN 30 YEARS!
Our new album (title of which you'll just have to wait a bit longer for) is just a few steps from being completely done. We're planning on re-visiting one of the eleven songs, to make sure it's gotten everything it deserves. Maybe re-arranging it one last time. Then, time to mix.
The entire writing and recording process of the album harkened back to an earlier, more innocent time. A time that produced albums such as ROCK AND ROLL OVER and LOVE GUN. And, the new songs have that feeling, I have to say.
It all started with a point of view Paul had. The view had to do with ignoring the times, ignoring the critics, not over thinking who and what we are...and that we had nothing to prove to anyone....nothing. We have been releasing albums and touring for 35 years and why wouldn't we want to do an "honest" record. Just do it!!! And, he wanted to produce the album himself!!!
While it's true in the past we had produced KISS records together. And we had both produced other acts outside of KISS. But here was Paul saying he wanted to shoulder the responsibility and burden of steering the good ship KISS on his own.
He was serious. And, I saw it was real. I saw the commitment he was going to make to the album and the band... and I agreed. We all trusted each other and saw the same vision of the band...and perhaps democracy is overrated...and sooner or later, someone had to decide.
And I will tell you here and now, he's done a great job.
The process of writing songs involved both writing separately, but often, in hotel rooms and rehearsal halls, literally starting from scratch and throwing riffs and chords at each other. Then working on melody and lyric...starting alone, then bringing it into the rehearsal halls and even during recording, we would often critique the lyrics all the way down to the last minute.
Tommy really stepped up in the songwriting area....co-wrote some songs with us and actually sings his first song on a KISS album.
Eric, likewise was always encouraging and of course, provided his always dependable bombastic drumming style. But unlike other drummers, Eric is also a great singer. Wait until you hear him tear it up on his lead vocal.
What else, you ask?
Well, Paul and I trade vocals on a few tunes and had a lot to say about each other's songs...
Result? Maybe the best record we've done in 30 years.
Bold statement? You bet.
Wait till you hear it.
MESSAGE FROM TOMMY THAYER
YOU'RE GONNA LOVE IT!
Well the brand new KISS studio album is almost ready to go - actually more like ready to EXPLODE! We finished recording last week, with the exception of one tune that needs an hour or so more --- I have to tell you it KICKS!
Paul has done a fantastic job keeping everyone in line and the direction clear. As you might have heard, all the tunes were written within the band and recorded analog -- which means hot, heavy and rockin' in the classic sense!
We definitely didn't over-think it.
From the beginning stages of writing, rehearsing and arranging the tunes, to putting the trax down on tape, we went with our GUT... kept it raw and real. We didn't go more than two or three takes when we recorded the basic tracks, which by-the-way, we recorded with all four of us together -- which is a rare (or non-existent) occurrence with bands in this modern digital age. We had a laugh when we were tracking the 11th and very last tune and Eric said, we have to get this in two or three takes like all the others or it ain't no good!
The true test for how new tunes hold up is when you play them live. As everybody probably knows, we haven't played any of these brand-new songs in concert, but we did run a few of them at our sound check in Milwaukee last week. Yep, you guessed right... They SCORCHED! Our tour crew guys were like, HOLY S**T, what was that?!!
It's been a gas doing this record with Paul, Eric and Gene -- truly a collaborative effort! I told the guys the other day that in my humble opinion, this is by far the most cohesive sounding record KISS has made in a long, long time -- meaning that ALL the tunes are great, the sound kicks my ass, and it all fits together perfectly as an album.
IT DON'T GET ANY BETTER THAN THAT!
Can't wait for you to hear it... You're gonna LOVE it!
MESSAGE FROM ERIC SINGER
NO BALLADS, NO SLOW SONGS, NO FILLERS!
You Wanted The Best ?
Well the wait is almost over...
I have been hearing KISS fans say for a longtime that "All's we want is NEW KISS music" ... Well, sometimes wishes do come true !
Last December Paul called me up saying he wanted to make a new KISS record. He seemed very keen and was very specific about the approach to our latest endeavors.
He basically said he wanted us to make a KISS record and music in the purest sense. Meaning No outside writers, the BAND plays on everything, and we use vintage equipment.
Guess what ?
The end result is everything I could have hoped for.
I have to say this has been the most fun and pleasure making a record I have ever been involved in. The chemistry and overall vibe really made for such a great atmosphere and the playing, sounds and songs just really capture what KISS is all about. Classic Rock & Roll.
As we were working up song ideas everyone was very in tune and conscious of our goals at all times. Gene and Paul would retrace their steps from the past and focused on paying tribute to their roots of the early styles of Classic KISS by paying close attention to the way they sang and the sounds of the instruments.
The camaraderie between everyone and especially Gene and Paul really made it easy for all to bring the best out of each other.
Paul took the reigns and headed up the project like the leader that he has been for over 35 years but, this time with a renewed, inspired and very patient style (he is a great dad after all). He really knew what he wanted from each of us individually and collectively.
We did the 11 new songs in small batches by getting into a rehearsal studio first to work up ideas. We then would move to the recording studio. The recordings would entail all of us playing "live" together in the room. As we captured each performance we would then add extra guitar parts and usually put a guide vocal on the track so we could live with it for a few days and make sure the tempos and vibe was right.
By the way we used NO click tracks on this record I am proud to say. We really went for capturing the live feel and essence of each song. And, Paul, Gene, Tommy and myself are the only musicians playing these songs. A true band effort and performance !
As for the songs ?
Well, no ballads, no slow songs, no filler...
The band really has come full circle.
Just pure straight ahead Rock and Roll that has all the elements that made you love KISS from day one.
Everyone sings lead on a song (Tommy and myself) and even trade off vocal lines and parts throughout the record.
Believe me the wait IS over and well worth it !
I hope you all enjoy listening to it as much as we did making it...
More as it happens!
Courtesy of www.sleazeroxx.com
GENE SIMMONS SAYS "ACE IS A SWEETHEART AND HAS A HEART OF GOLD"
July 9, 2009
Gene Simmons and KISS invade Canada
Richard Burnett of www.ottawaxpress.ca
reports that KISS fans around the world should have known God was on Oshawa's side when in May that Ontario town's Simcoe Street United Church showed its support for a KISS concert at their city's 6,400-seat arena with a sign on its lawn in big block letters that read, "CHURCH MEMBERS HAVE VOTED. BRING KISS TO OSHAWA."
Oshawa was one of dozens of cities in the running for a KISS concert, and when voting closed on June 30, the Ontario town hard-hit by the collapse of the auto industry won with 14,573 votes, with Winnipeg next at 12,929. In fact, the entire top 10 was made up of Canadian cities, and when I suggest to KISS co-founder Gene Simmons that we should spell Canada with a K, he replies, "I like the idea!"
Then Simmons muses aloud, "Maybe I should move to Canada. There's something to say about all the beautiful women in Canada. My wife Shannon [Tweed] is from Canada. When we're in Ottawa on July 15, it's going to be Shannon Tweed Day in Ottawa!"
And on July 12 in Toronto, Simmons has been named grand marshal of the Honda Indy car race. In fact, on this last leg of their year-old Alive 35 World Tour, Gene Simmons and Paul Stanley, along with hired guns Tommy Thayer and Eric Singer (replacing Ace Frehley and Peter Criss in their original makeup) are bringing the KISS carnival to eight Canadian cities in 11 days.
And Simmons saws Oshawa will get its own concert when KISS begins a new world tour in September (with 50 one-nighters in America alone) to promote their upcoming album out this October, their
first of new material in 10 years and which Paul Stanley is producing.
"There hasn't been an important rock band to emerge in the last 25 years that will still mean something in 100 years," Simmons says. "But from the end of the 1950s to 1980, there was Elvis, The Beatles, The Stones, Led Zep, ABBA - say what you will but they wrote great songs - KISS, there's a hundred bands from that period. All the music from Elvis to KISS was born before MTV, cellphones and the Internet. KISS still trains hard and every emo band at 19 can shine our boot heels! They're gonna get a lesson [from us]: You blow the goddamn place up!"
What about unrepentant rock critics?
"You know, I discovered a band [over 30 years ago] called Van Halen, I signed them [to my record label] and produced their demo. Critics hated them. When singer David Lee Roth was asked why the critics hated Van Halen and loved Elvis Costello, Roth said, 'Because they look like Costello.' It's still true."
Still, this week all anyone can talk about is Michael Jackson. Simmons has refused all media requests to discuss Jackson on the record. Until now.
"I knew Michael and met him. He was shy and charming and self-effacing and obviously very talented. [For me the real story is] sadly about the little boys - not a single girl - all of them little boys under 13 [who] sued him for child molestation. He was never convicted but we know he paid $20-million to settle a case. I think [Jackson] doth protest too much. The story is not complete. I want to hear what those little boys have to say."
KISS has always been about the kids, from the millions who joined the KISS Army at the band's height in the late 1970s to fourth-generation fans filling arenas today. When Ace Frehley once trashed the band's fans because they were mostly kids, he was taken to task by both Simmons and Stanley, who know a good brand when they see one.
"Ace is a sweetheart and has a heart of gold," Simmons says. "But he was a major drug addict and alcoholic which is why he and Peter [Criss] were thrown out of the band. You know, rock stars are morons. What Ace said about the kids was stupid and uncaring."
Speaking of children, what does Simmons think about Chastity Bono, the daughter of his ex-girlfriend Cher, transitioning from female to male?
"I love Chas," Simmons says. "I was living with Cher when Chas and [her brother] Elijah were kids and I was a substitute dad for a while. Life is short and we should all make up and be happy. And everybody else be damned if Chas isn't happy today, God bless. If Chas is happy, then she will have found the secret of life."
Courtesy of www.sleazeroxx.com