The Press Release:
Los Angeles – September 18, 2018– Forty years ago today, each one the four founding members of KISS — Gene Simmons, Paul Stanley, Ace Frehley, and Peter Criss — released their respective solo albums all on the same day to much fanfare, chart success, and platinum sales. And now, four decades later, all four of these pioneering albums are celebrated in KISS: The Solo Albums – 40th Anniversary Collection, a limited-edition 180-gram 4LP box set by Casablanca/UMe that’s earmarked for release on October 19.
Preorders commence today, September 18, for the limited run of 2,500 vinyl box sets, available exclusively through KISS’s artist webstore (https://www.shopkissonline.com) and The Sound of Vinyl (https://SOV.lnk.to/KISSSoloAlbumsText). Each heavyweight 180-gram LP features a unique color to match its associated cover art; Gene Simmons appears in red vinyl, Paul Stanley sports purple vinyl, Ace Frehley contains blue vinyl, and Peter Criss is in green vinyl. All four albums are housed together in a deluxe black-matte slipcase that features glossy black images of the four artists’ faces surrounding a silver-foil print of the infamous KISS logo.
Continue reading KISS’ Iconic Four Solo Albums Get A Limited-Edition 4LP Vinyl Box Set
I’ve really been enjoying sharing these “Music Milestones” with you and well, to be honest anything in the “Milestone” category brings a smile to my face because it’s fun to reflect upon something that I remember buying way back in the day or have looked upon fondly for many years. Today’s “Milestone” is actually the first of four related topics because we are at the 35th Anniversary of the KISS Solo Albums – Lifelong KISS fans of a certain age might recall how in 1978 on this very day, four distinct albums were released to the public that showcased the creative side of each of the bands members. I’ll start with Gene Simmons since he has long been my favorite member of the band but as far as deep analysis of the album goes I am going to leave that to the Official Wikipedia entry which is at the bottom. You don’t need me to repeat what is already documented.
Continue reading KISS’ “Gene Simmons” Solo Album Is 35 Years Old (1978-2013)
Artist: KISS: Ace Frehley
Title: “Ace Frehley – Solo” (remaster)
Release Date: 9/16/1997
Genre: Hard Rock
In 1978 KISS did the unthinkable and released solo albums for each individual member of the group. It allowed the band to showcase what drove them musically on an individual level. As soon as the opening riffs on Ace’s solo album began it was clear that this would be among the best of the individual releases. The songs all around this recording leaned to the creative aspect of the KISS guitarist very well and by kicking off with “Rip It Out” you were made to feel as though you were in a concert setting immediately. “Speedin’ Back To My Baby” and “Wiped Out” are also solid rockers and play against Ace’s established style perfectly. There were no new tricks and surprises to spring on the fans with his solo and if they expected a rocking guitar record they most certainly got one with this release. Despite the number of catchy songs the most unexpected part of Frehley’s solo would be the knock down hit he had with “New York Groove”. Instead of bandleaders Stanley and Simmons delivering such a track or even Criss (who found his “Beth” becoming one of the bands most staple tracks) we get this simple and basic blockbuster from The Space Ace.
Continue reading “Ace Frehley Solo” (remaster) by KISS
Artist: KISS: Paul Stanley
Title: “Paul Stanley – Solo” (remaster)
Release Date: 9/16/1997
Genre: Hard Rock
In 1978, KISS did the unthinkable and released solo albums for each individual member of the group. It allowed the band to showcase what drove them musically on an individual level. Paul Stanley had a number of things going for him on his solo that set him apart from the other members very quickly. The first was his being the “voice of KISS” to most of the world and this instantly recognizable sound immediately had his album referred to as the most “KISS-like”. As you listen, you will find this vocally as well as musically across the majority of the recording. Ace Frehley had given us the most technically musical and heaviest of the solos while Gene gave the most experimental; Peter’s would be the most out in left field. Of the four releases, owning the Paul and Ace album would be the safest bet for most listeners especially the casual listener. Paul also had some killer musicians joining him for the recording of his album, among them Bob Kulick (guitar) and Carmine Appice (drums). Kulick was a name that often came up as the recording guitarist on a number of KISS classics despite who is listed as doing it while Carmine is a legend in the drumming world and certainly not a slouch in that department. The amount of hit material present on Paul’s solo made me wonder why Ace had the only stand out song of the four releases. Songs like “Move On” and “It’s Alright” were rocking, and yet radio-friendly for the time of their release. Blockbuster Rock power was delivered on some of the songs especially on “Tonight You Belong To Me” and “Take Me Away”. During these memorable tracks, we find Paul at his vocal best giving you both passion and power. I consider these the most stand-out of the entire recording despite my leaning to this whole album as a favorite. There were also a couple that would have been great KISS songs if they had been submitted as such; I found this to be the case with “Love In Chains” and “Wouldn’t You Like To Know Me”.
Continue reading “Paul Stanley Solo” (remaster) by KISS
Artist: KISS: Peter Criss
Title: “Peter Criss – Solo” (remaster)
Release Date: 9/16/1997
Genre: Rock & Roll
In 1978 KISS did the unthinkable and released solo albums for each individual member of the group. It allowed each person to showcase what drove them musically. Peter Criss’ solo effort showed a totally different side of what you might expect to be released. There was nothing heavy or Hard Rock about the album at all and instead a more adult-contemporary blend of Rock & Roll. While it was well recorded and produced, the lack of any real raise your fist material left a lot of KISS fans scratching their heads. Instead of the anthem nature like the other solo albums this had songs like “You Matter To Me” and “Hooked On Rock ‘N Roll”. The songs seemed more suitable to Billy Joel rather than the famous skin basher. Soulful piano and brass sections replaced rock guitars and ballads were par for the course here. Yet as you look back on his interviews you will find that this is the kind of music that Criss always preferred. He was raised on Jazz greats and 50’s Rock & Roll, being the oldest member of KISS some of the stuff that inspired his partners was coming up after his influences had been set.
Continue reading “Peter Criss” (remaster) by KISS