Kiss were always about more than the music. From the start, when they covered their faces in makeup, strapped on spiked platform boots and gave themselves nicknames like the Demon and Starchild, the concept behind Kiss mattered more than the music. That’s not to say they haven’t made some great records during their 40-year career; their 1975 ‘Alive!” album remains one of the best concert LPs ever released. But the band’s shrewd marketing campaigns over the years – which has included TV specials to candy to coffins and pretty much everything in between – has made them one of the most recognizable brand names on the planet. All of which makes the music almost secondary in Kiss’ worldview. But their mix of heavy-metal thunder and hard-rock hooks has guaranteed a spot among the most durable bands of the past four decades.
Why Vito Bratta Lost Ozzy Gig and Told Kiss to F--- Themselves
Six-string virtuoso recalls choice words for Gene Simmons and Paul Stanley.
Paul Stanley's Solo Album Chronicled a Real-Life Love Triangle
Kiss star admitted he "basked in the drama" on the 1978 LP.
Why Gene Simmons Was Free to Make Kiss' Weirdest Solo Album
Simmons left his demonic persona behind in favor of hosting an all-star, genre-hopping party.
Why Kiss' Solo Albums Failed to Keep Peter Criss in the Group
Simultaneously released debuts "probably put the final nail in the coffin of the band," he later concluded.
Kiss: Their Last Great, Last Good, First Bad Album
Five writers debate the highs and lows of the band's roller coaster-like discography.
Sammy Hagar Explains Why He Whipped It Out While Opening for Kiss
"Sammy! Oh, my God, you can't f---ing do that, man," exclaimed Paul Stanley.
Simmons Speechless Over Criss and Frehley's Kiss Reunion Refusals
Bassist doesn't know what to say about former bandmates' positions as final show looms.