"Odyssey": Definitive Book On The Elder Coming Fall 2016

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Re: "Odyssey": Definitive Book On The Elder Coming Fall 2016

Post by GACatmandu » Sat Jan 02, 2016 7:01 pm

If this book is released, this may be one that I will be getting.

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Re: "Odyssey": Definitive Book On The Elder Coming Fall 2016

Post by Planet Caravan » Sun Jan 03, 2016 1:42 am

Australia wrote:
Planet Caravan wrote:It better have the complete info about the pre-Elder sessions as well.

Those events are also integral to the Elder era and how that album came to be made.
Was Auckland NZ the last show of 1980?, How many pages can a book be? But that would be a nice time to start it off, Back stage after that show.
See you guys at ACE's in January?
As the guys wiped the greasepaint off, Ace mentioned his studio or no further part in the band?
It was an exciting time for the band. They just finished a kickass tour, they had a great new drummer and I think they were all excited. After the Aus/NZ tour they reconvened at Ace's home studio in January '81 and reportedly recorded at least 4 songs with Rob Freeman, who had worked on Ace's solo album.

2 of the tracks recorded were the original Deadly Weapons, and Nowhere to Run (the version on "Killers" I believe is an alternate take or remix).

Ezrin only became involved a month or so later. And that's when it started going off the rails.

To me this pre-Elder to Elder era is SO intriguing. Its possibly the biggest ever fork in the road for Kiss. On one path they could make a hard rock album, possibly win back some of their fanbase, keep most of the original band intact and keep their multimillion dollar Polygram record deal.

But on the other path they make a bullshit medieval sword and sorcerer concept album with a coked out megalomaniac producer, shatter the band, lose their multimillion dollar record deal and whatever remained of their fanbase thinks they are a joke.

All of these early events shaped what came after with COTN, what came after with Lick It Up and all of the 80s. In fact it shaped everything that would follow all the way up to the Reunion.

There's a little bit of info of those early sessions here: http://www.kissasylum.com/news/2012/11/ ... -sessions/

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Re: "Odyssey": Definitive Book On The Elder Coming Fall 2016

Post by LordThurisaz » Sun Jan 03, 2016 4:14 am

Planet Caravan wrote:
Australia wrote:
Planet Caravan wrote:It better have the complete info about the pre-Elder sessions as well.

Those events are also integral to the Elder era and how that album came to be made.
Was Auckland NZ the last show of 1980?, How many pages can a book be? But that would be a nice time to start it off, Back stage after that show.
See you guys at ACE's in January?
As the guys wiped the greasepaint off, Ace mentioned his studio or no further part in the band?
It was an exciting time for the band. They just finished a kickass tour, they had a great new drummer and I think they were all excited. After the Aus/NZ tour they reconvened at Ace's home studio in January '81 and reportedly recorded at least 4 songs with Rob Freeman, who had worked on Ace's solo album.

2 of the tracks recorded were the original Deadly Weapons, and Nowhere to Run (the version on "Killers" I believe is an alternate take or remix).

Ezrin only became involved a month or so later. And that's when it started going off the rails.

To me this pre-Elder to Elder era is SO intriguing. Its possibly the biggest ever fork in the road for Kiss. On one path they could make a hard rock album, possibly win back some of their fanbase, keep most of the original band intact and keep their multimillion dollar Polygram record deal.

But on the other path they make a bullshit medieval sword and sorcerer concept album with a coked out megalomaniac producer, shatter the band, lose their multimillion dollar record deal and whatever remained of their fanbase thinks they are a joke.

All of these early events shaped what came after with COTN, what came after with Lick It Up and all of the 80s. In fact it shaped everything that would follow all the way up to the Reunion.

There's a little bit of info of those early sessions here: http://www.kissasylum.com/news/2012/11/ ... -sessions/
The album they were working on would've been a lot more intriguing than a second rate Castles and Beasts wannabe Dungeons and Dragons crap. Pure unadulterated, mediocre pap. Thanks Ezrin. The pre Elder era is intriguing. The Elder era is a joke that's not intended, as the whole thing is apparently meant to be taken seriously, which makes the entire debacle more than a bit sad. When the phrase "lost the plot" gets used by publications, I'm sure they explain it similar to, "So and so lost the plot, but certainly not on the level of Music from "The Elder"."

One of the few times I can think of where a record company should've been like "We'll pay you DOUBLE to bury this turd with the Atari ET games, and to start over." If Killers would've been a full album and this thing would've been forgotten entirely, it probably would've went over way better not to mention Ace probably wouldn't have left -- at least not at this juncture in the band's history. If Destroyer should've gotten Ezrin punched "on behalf of the KISS Army," this should've gotten him jumped and dumped in a dumpster. This is the musical equivalent of a travesty, as it represents the band in a false and completely warped fashion.

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Re: "Odyssey": Definitive Book On The Elder Coming Fall 2016

Post by goinblind » Sun Jan 03, 2016 11:03 pm

Planet Caravan wrote:There's a little bit of info of those early sessions here: http://www.kissasylum.com/news/2012/11/ ... -sessions/
Wow, Bob Ezrin's quip to Rob Freeman about "If you didn’t get all that, you shouldn’t be working with me" was incredibly shitty. No wonder he hasn't produced anything of note since that day (sorry, outside of "Unholy," Revenge sucks -- it's an unfocused mess from a producer's standpoint at the very least). What a self-absorbed, delusional asshole.

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Re: "Odyssey": Definitive Book On The Elder Coming Fall 2016

Post by sugardaddy » Mon Jan 04, 2016 10:52 am

I LOVE the Elder and that era. A lot of "what if's" for sure, but if the book is anything like the NovElder feature a couple years ago, I am sooooo geared for this book.

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Re: "Odyssey": Definitive Book On The Elder Coming Fall 2016

Post by kinetic74 » Mon Jan 04, 2016 5:46 pm

goinblind wrote:
Planet Caravan wrote:There's a little bit of info of those early sessions here: http://www.kissasylum.com/news/2012/11/ ... -sessions/
Wow, Bob Ezrin's quip to Rob Freeman about "If you didn’t get all that, you shouldn’t be working with me" was incredibly shitty. No wonder he hasn't produced anything of note since that day (sorry, outside of "Unholy," Revenge sucks -- it's an unfocused mess from a producer's standpoint at the very least). What a self-absorbed, delusional asshole.
He'd just come off the MEGA success of The Wall with Pink Floyd and was, apparently, dealing with a gargantuan cocaine addiction at the time.

So i'm sure the natural + artificial arrogance factor was turned up to 10!! Cocaine's a helluva drug as they say.

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Re: "Odyssey": Definitive Book On The Elder Coming Fall 2016

Post by goinblind » Mon Jan 04, 2016 10:11 pm

kinetic74 wrote:
goinblind wrote:
Planet Caravan wrote:There's a little bit of info of those early sessions here: http://www.kissasylum.com/news/2012/11/ ... -sessions/
Wow, Bob Ezrin's quip to Rob Freeman about "If you didn’t get all that, you shouldn’t be working with me" was incredibly shitty. No wonder he hasn't produced anything of note since that day (sorry, outside of "Unholy," Revenge sucks -- it's an unfocused mess from a producer's standpoint at the very least). What a self-absorbed, delusional asshole.
He'd just come off the MEGA success of The Wall with Pink Floyd and was, apparently, dealing with a gargantuan cocaine addiction at the time.

So i'm sure the natural + artificial arrogance factor was turned up to 10!! Cocaine's a helluva drug as they say.
Yea, and good for him ... he got control and made a shitty album and hasn't produced anything noteworthy since.

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Re: "Odyssey": Definitive Book On The Elder Coming Fall 2016

Post by redinthesky » Mon Jan 04, 2016 10:52 pm

Not a fan of The Elder but I'd read. Probably infinitely more interesting than the "movie" that was never made (thankfully) from a few years ago. Best of luck.

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Re: "Odyssey": Definitive Book On The Elder Coming Fall 2016

Post by LordThurisaz » Mon Jan 04, 2016 10:53 pm

goinblind wrote:
kinetic74 wrote:
goinblind wrote:
Planet Caravan wrote:There's a little bit of info of those early sessions here: http://www.kissasylum.com/news/2012/11/ ... -sessions/
Wow, Bob Ezrin's quip to Rob Freeman about "If you didn’t get all that, you shouldn’t be working with me" was incredibly shitty. No wonder he hasn't produced anything of note since that day (sorry, outside of "Unholy," Revenge sucks -- it's an unfocused mess from a producer's standpoint at the very least). What a self-absorbed, delusional asshole.
He'd just come off the MEGA success of The Wall with Pink Floyd and was, apparently, dealing with a gargantuan cocaine addiction at the time.

So i'm sure the natural + artificial arrogance factor was turned up to 10!! Cocaine's a helluva drug as they say.
Yea, and good for him ... he got control and made a shitty album and hasn't produced anything noteworthy since.
Who are we talking about again? :lol:

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Re: "Odyssey": Definitive Book On The Elder Coming Fall 2016

Post by Australia » Tue Jan 05, 2016 12:48 am

I believe those pre Elder sessions at ACEINTHEHOLE show Kiss had very little to work with, a new rock album would have been mediocre at best, and would have done nothing to lift Kiss fan base in the states.
The only solution was to get Bob Ezrin back to help with the songs, but unfortunatly the record company then stepped in and fucked the whole concept up, by removing important dialogue and song running order.
Nothing would have worked for Kiss in 1981, if it was released in 1978 (and they had beaten Pink Floyd to the Table) we would by now be watching THE ELDER MOVIE on blu ray.
The concept is fine, and has worked for 1000s of years dating back to JESUS CHRIST, and then more recently SUPERMAN and STAR WARS!
Music From THE ELDER returned Kiss to some of it's Heaviest Music since Hotter Than Hell, eg, The Oath, Only You/Under The Rose and Mr Blackwell, and then i will add Escape From and Dark Light as alternatives.
I guess if you did not live through Dynasty (perticularly IWMFLU) or Unmasked you can not understand the timming nor nature of this album, so maybe you will never get it, so stop trying, OR maybe listen to The Elder in context and play thru Dynasty, then Unmasked , AND THEN THE ELDER, you may see it differently.

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Re: "Odyssey": Definitive Book On The Elder Coming Fall 2016

Post by The Demon » Tue Jan 05, 2016 1:15 am

Australia wrote:I believe those pre Elder sessions at ACEINTHEHOLE show Kiss had very little to work with, a new rock album would have been mediocre at best, and would have done nothing to lift Kiss fan base in the states.
The only solution was to get Bob Ezrin back to help with the songs, but unfortunatly the record company then stepped in and fucked the whole concept up, by removing important dialogue and song running order.
Nothing would have worked for Kiss in 1981, if it was released in 1978 (and they had beaten Pink Floyd to the Table) we would by now be watching THE ELDER MOVIE on blu ray.
The concept is fine, and has worked for 1000s of years dating back to JESUS CHRIST, and then more recently SUPERMAN and STAR WARS!
Music From THE ELDER returned Kiss to some of it's Heaviest Music since Hotter Than Hell, eg, The Oath, Only You/Under The Rose and Mr Blackwell, and then i will add Escape From and Dark Light as alternatives.
I guess if you did not live through Dynasty (perticularly IWMFLU) or Unmasked you can not understand the timming nor nature of this album, so maybe you will never get it, so stop trying, OR maybe listen to The Elder in context and play thru Dynasty, then Unmasked , AND THEN THE ELDER, you may see it differently.
I wasn't alive during all this, but this post is pretty spot on and it's always the way I've looked at The Elder.

In addition to the fact that the album was clearly very piss poorly promoted.

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Re: "Odyssey": Definitive Book On The Elder Coming Fall 2016

Post by LordThurisaz » Tue Jan 05, 2016 1:40 am

Australia wrote:I believe those pre Elder sessions at ACEINTHEHOLE show Kiss had very little to work with, a new rock album would have been mediocre at best, and would have done nothing to lift Kiss fan base in the states.
The only solution was to get Bob Ezrin back to help with the songs, but unfortunatly the record company then stepped in and fucked the whole concept up, by removing important dialogue and song running order.
Nothing would have worked for Kiss in 1981, if it was released in 1978 (and they had beaten Pink Floyd to the Table) we would by now be watching THE ELDER MOVIE on blu ray.
The concept is fine, and has worked for 1000s of years dating back to JESUS CHRIST, and then more recently SUPERMAN and STAR WARS!
Music From THE ELDER returned Kiss to some of it's Heaviest Music since Hotter Than Hell, eg, The Oath, Only You/Under The Rose and Mr Blackwell, and then i will add Escape From and Dark Light as alternatives.
I guess if you did not live through Dynasty (perticularly IWMFLU) or Unmasked you can not understand the timming nor nature of this album, so maybe you will never get it, so stop trying, OR maybe listen to The Elder in context and play thru Dynasty, then Unmasked , AND THEN THE ELDER, you may see it differently.
The record company -- and not Ezrin -- is the one that fucked everything up? If you say so.

The concept is subpar. It's generic and basic, coming across as a vague Lord of the Dungeons & Dragons esque affair. And to compound this, the second and third of the trilogy probably would've come across about the same as the two sequels to Star Wars. Not saying that Star Wars is bad, just that the same basic elements of Empire and Return would've been found in the other two parts of the Elder trilogy.
Music From THE ELDER returned Kiss to some of it's Heaviest Music since Hotter Than Hell
It's also got some of their softest stuff as well, like Just a Boy. The album completely lost the plot and I believe some British mag has listed it as one of the top 20 or so albums to "completely lose the plot." Anyways, maybe Double Dynasty can start a poll thread saying "Will you AGREE that Just a Boy is better than Metallica's THE VIEW?"

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Re: "Odyssey": Definitive Book On The Elder Coming Fall 2016

Post by Ara78 » Tue Jan 05, 2016 4:05 am

Australia wrote: Nothing would have worked for Kiss in 1981,
True. When I was young they were already old.

In 'early 83 I was wearing their COTN shirt in high school and an exchange student asked her host what the shirt was about. "They're a very old band," was the response.

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Re: "Odyssey": Definitive Book On The Elder Coming Fall 2016

Post by The Demon » Tue Jan 05, 2016 4:12 am

LordThurisaz wrote:It's also got some of their softest stuff as well, like Just a Boy.
Hotter Than Hell had "Goin' Blind." Destroyer had "Great Expectations" and "Beth." Rock and Roll Over had "Hard Luck Woman." Love Gun had a cover of "Then He Kissed Me."

The heavy stuff on Elder, which was the majority of the album, was for the most part heavier than anything they had previously done or at least a continuation of the proper KISS sound.

The album's commercial failure has nothing to do with the lyrics. It was simply a poorly promoted release (much like the follow up album), and KISS not at least touring in support of it left it out there to die.

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Re: "Odyssey": Definitive Book On The Elder Coming Fall 2016

Post by 1000000-2-1 » Tue Jan 05, 2016 7:02 am

sugardaddy wrote:I LOVE the Elder and that era. A lot of "what if's" for sure, but if the book is anything like the NovElder feature a couple years ago, I am sooooo geared for this book.
THIS!

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Re: "Odyssey": Definitive Book On The Elder Coming Fall 2016

Post by redinthesky » Tue Jan 05, 2016 8:45 am

Australia wrote:I believe those pre Elder sessions at ACEINTHEHOLE show Kiss had very little to work with, a new rock album would have been mediocre at best, and would have done nothing to lift Kiss fan base in the states.
The only solution was to get Bob Ezrin back to help with the songs, but unfortunatly the record company then stepped in and fucked the whole concept up, by removing important dialogue and song running order.
Nothing would have worked for Kiss in 1981, if it was released in 1978 (and they had beaten Pink Floyd to the Table) we would by now be watching THE ELDER MOVIE on blu ray.
The concept is fine, and has worked for 1000s of years dating back to JESUS CHRIST, and then more recently SUPERMAN and STAR WARS!
Music From THE ELDER returned Kiss to some of it's Heaviest Music since Hotter Than Hell, eg, The Oath, Only You/Under The Rose and Mr Blackwell, and then i will add Escape From and Dark Light as alternatives.
I guess if you did not live through Dynasty (perticularly IWMFLU) or Unmasked you can not understand the timming nor nature of this album, so maybe you will never get it, so stop trying, OR maybe listen to The Elder in context and play thru Dynasty, then Unmasked , AND THEN THE ELDER, you may see it differently.
If "The Elder" was released in 1978, when Kiss had a very definitive model of success, Kiss would have been laughed off the music scene with a worldwide cry of "what the fuck is this shit?"

The Elder was actually released at the best possible time, because in '81 Kiss was so lost and so clueless as a band, The Elder really didn't "disrupt" the Kiss formula because by then, Kiss was virtually dead anyway. So even with that advantage, The Elder was rightfully a bomb, because despite a song or two and some melodies it's an empty, overblown disaster that sounds like it's underwater even, and rightfully still the only studio album (not counting the past two with the current lineup) not to go gold, even after 34+ years (and no, it really hasn't). I know many like the album, and that's fine, again I like just a bit of it, and some try to make excuses why it was a huge failure (the timing, the recording, etc etc). But the bottom line is, it's just not really that good. And with bands like AC/DC, Priest, Van Halen and more giving the people what they really wanted, The Elder still makes you wonder just what the hell was wrong with these guys back then.

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Re: "Odyssey": Definitive Book On The Elder Coming Fall 2016

Post by Planet Caravan » Tue Jan 05, 2016 10:41 am

Australia wrote: Nothing would have worked for Kiss in 1981,
The differences between Kiss releasing a hard rock album in 1981 versus COTN in 1982 is that Kiss would have been less far up shit creek due to the Elder, the label would have thrown their full support behind it, and Kiss would have been away from the US for only 2 years instead of 3 years. 3 years is an eternity to a kid or teenager. The late 70s level of popularity was long gone but a US Kiss tour in 1981 would have been less than Dynasty but greater than COTN. And the band would have been able to go straight back to Europe and Australia as well as Japan to restore the band's international popularity as well.


The Demon wrote: The heavy stuff on Elder, which was the majority of the album, was for the most part heavier than anything they had previously done or at least a continuation of the proper KISS sound.

I would love to hear what version of The Elder you seem to have been listening to all these years. The only truly heavy song on the album is 'The Oath'. Ace's 2 songs are reasonably lively as is 'I'. The rest ranges from soft to bizarre (for Kiss).

Sure the album as a whole was heavier than Unmasked (not a difficult task), but no way was The Elder heavier than Love Gun or RARO or a continuation of the "Kiss sound".


I can't believe some people are actually trying to compare this album to The Wall, and keep a straight face. The Elder's concept is so generic and flimsy. And the songs just aren't there. In fact there aren't even enough songs to flesh out the concept. They had to pad out the album with an unfinished jam (Escape from the island) and even a cover song (Odyssey) The whole thing is just half baked.

The label should have rejected the album & sent them back into the studio.

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Re: "Odyssey": Definitive Book On The Elder Coming Fall 2016

Post by Wiped Out 78 » Tue Jan 05, 2016 1:45 pm

The Demon wrote: I wasn't alive during all this, but this post is pretty spot on and it's always the way I've looked at The Elder.

In addition to the fact that the album was clearly very piss poorly promoted.
Speaking as someone who was alive at the time, there was nothing wrong with the promotion. They appeared on "Fridays" and "Solid Gold". They made a video. They were in all the usual rock magazines discussing it. People knew about MFTE. They just weren't interested.

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Re: "Odyssey": Definitive Book On The Elder Coming Fall 2016

Post by sugardaddy » Tue Jan 05, 2016 2:09 pm

Australia wrote:I believe those pre Elder sessions at ACEINTHEHOLE show Kiss had very little to work with, a new rock album would have been mediocre at best, and would have done nothing to lift Kiss fan base in the states.
The only solution was to get Bob Ezrin back to help with the songs, but unfortunatly the record company then stepped in and fucked the whole concept up, by removing important dialogue and song running order.
Nothing would have worked for Kiss in 1981, if it was released in 1978 (and they had beaten Pink Floyd to the Table) we would by now be watching THE ELDER MOVIE on blu ray.
The concept is fine, and has worked for 1000s of years dating back to JESUS CHRIST, and then more recently SUPERMAN and STAR WARS!
Music From THE ELDER returned Kiss to some of it's Heaviest Music since Hotter Than Hell, eg, The Oath, Only You/Under The Rose and Mr Blackwell, and then i will add Escape From and Dark Light as alternatives.
I guess if you did not live through Dynasty (perticularly IWMFLU) or Unmasked you can not understand the timming nor nature of this album, so maybe you will never get it, so stop trying, OR maybe listen to The Elder in context and play thru Dynasty, then Unmasked , AND THEN THE ELDER, you may see it differently.
while i do not necessarily agree with everything in this post, i really like it.

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Re: "Odyssey": Definitive Book On The Elder Coming Fall 2016

Post by FlamingRuth » Tue Jan 05, 2016 8:36 pm

1000000-2-1 wrote:
sugardaddy wrote:I LOVE the Elder and that era. A lot of "what if's" for sure, but if the book is anything like the NovElder feature a couple years ago, I am sooooo geared for this book.
THIS!

Yep...this is how I feel, too.
I was 14 years old when The Elder came out...an awkward, weird, uncomfortable, age.
So an awkward, weird , uncomfortable Kiss album was exactly what I needed.

Bring on the Kiss books in 2016!
Just ordered Alain's 2nd printing of Kiss in Japan...looking forward to getting my paws on the Odyssey in the fall. 8)

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Re: "Odyssey": Definitive Book On The Elder Coming Fall 2016

Post by LordThurisaz » Tue Jan 05, 2016 8:40 pm

The Demon wrote:
LordThurisaz wrote:It's also got some of their softest stuff as well, like Just a Boy.
Hotter Than Hell had "Goin' Blind." Destroyer had "Great Expectations" and "Beth." Rock and Roll Over had "Hard Luck Woman." Love Gun had a cover of "Then He Kissed Me."

The heavy stuff on Elder, which was the majority of the album, was for the most part heavier than anything they had previously done or at least a continuation of the proper KISS sound.

The album's commercial failure has nothing to do with the lyrics. It was simply a poorly promoted release (much like the follow up album), and KISS not at least touring in support of it left it out there to die.
"Some of," The Demon. "Some of." The commercial failure was a culmination of things, including the lyrical topics, the drastic change of the look of the band, the weird add-ons used for shit like fanfare, the 'storyline'. It was poorly promoted because of all of those things. The record company, I think, was trying to bury it. "Let's just release it, promote it very little, and hopefully it'll be forgotten and we all can move on." That was probably close to the record company's MO regarding the release and promotion of the album.

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Re: "Odyssey": Definitive Book On The Elder Coming Fall 2016

Post by Australia » Wed Jan 06, 2016 1:42 am

Lord T, how can you say Bob Ezrin was a reason THE ELDER sold poorly? Kiss had nothing (and i am sure you have heard the demos) before Bob came along.
I am only guessing , but i bet you think THE ELDER is pompous or grandoise, or one of those words Paul Stanley uses to describe the album, Where as if you speak to Gene you will find( unless he is in his bullshit media mode) that he actually enjoyed the album and experience.
Fanfare and Just A boy are great songs, and ONLY YOU, (if you have happened to listen to more than 1 minute) is a moment of Gene"s best song writing, now how Bob was not credited with the Just A Boy reprise ?
You most likely were not alive when this was released, so did you listen to Dynasty, Unmasked and THEN THE ELDER before you made comment?
BTW, i think your podcast and other relavent Kiss projects are great.

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Re: "Odyssey": Definitive Book On The Elder Coming Fall 2016

Post by LordThurisaz » Wed Jan 06, 2016 3:01 am

Australia wrote:Lord T, how can you say Bob Ezrin was a reason THE ELDER sold poorly? Kiss had nothing (and i am sure you have heard the demos) before Bob came along.
I am only guessing , but i bet you think THE ELDER is pompous or grandoise, or one of those words Paul Stanley uses to describe the album, Where as if you speak to Gene you will find( unless he is in his bullshit media mode) that he actually enjoyed the album and experience.
Fanfare and Just A boy are great songs, and ONLY YOU, (if you have happened to listen to more than 1 minute) is a moment of Gene"s best song writing, now how Bob was not credited with the Just A Boy reprise ?
You most likely were not alive when this was released, so did you listen to Dynasty, Unmasked and THEN THE ELDER before you made comment?
I was not alive when this was released, so fair enough, but yes I listened to Dynasty and Unmasked prior to The Elder, mainly because I was hesitant to get The Elder. I remember waiting until I had just about everything else from KISS before getting The Elder and Crazy Nights. I prefer stuff like Hard Times, Naked City and Save Your Love over Dark Light and the four Great Expectations-esque tunes on The Elder.

In regards to your points earlier about this being some of KISS' "heaviest," I have to disagree because it's definitely in need of more gain to qualify considering the timeframe in which it was released. Comparing it to say British Steel, Killers [Iron Maiden], Ace of Spades, Mob Rules, etc. it just doesn't stack up. Though, to refer directly to your comment, it was "some of the heaviest since Hotter Than Hell," so while it may be, it doesn't really stack up against real heavy shit from that period from other groups. Just because it was sort of kinda maybe a little bit heavy [even if the amp seems like it's not being pushed hard enough], it pails in comparison.
Lord T, how can you say Bob Ezrin was a reason THE ELDER sold poorly?
Hm. How can I say that? Maybe because KISS had promised a back to form heavy album. This isn't heavy, and certainly isn't what was promised. Frehley disagreed with the direction and refused to show up or be involved more than shipping guitar tracks to Ezrin only for them to go unused. Eric Carr, risking his job, called a band meeting to express his doubts and state how he believed this was the wrong direction to go. It was Ezrin's idea to base the album around a story Gene had written; otherwise the story probably wouldn't have been more than paper in Gene's office. Besides all of that, ♫ one of these albums is not like the others. ♫

So had Ezrin not overshot the target like he did two out of three times with KISS, they probably would've had a better outcome with this album. Regardless of Dynasty and Unmasked, I really don't think an album attempting to say more than the songs they had done prior -- ie, songs about 16 year old girls and clever sexual innuendos -- were going to go over entirely well, especially with a vague storyline that still wasn't very fleshed out before "the record company stepped in and fucked the whole concept up."

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Re: "Odyssey": Definitive Book On The Elder Coming Fall 2016

Post by Wildwood75 » Wed Jan 06, 2016 1:23 pm

Seriously looking forward to this book!

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Re: "Odyssey": Definitive Book On The Elder Coming Fall 2016

Post by Augmented6 » Wed Jan 06, 2016 2:00 pm

I was alive when The Elder came out and this is how I remember it: It didn't matter what album they made in 1981. It was over. They lost a lot of their fan base with IWMFLY. Disco? KISS? GTFOOH!! Jumping the shark. The rest of Dynasty was not Destroyer either. Their outfits 79-81 were not half as bad ass as the earlier stuff. Unmasked sank them in the states. A pop album? From the band that gave us Detroit Rock City? Peter Criss leaving (or fired, who cares?) didn't help either. The NWOBHM brought in a bunch of bands who were louder, faster, and more bad ass than Paul Stanley and all his purple glory. The purple bandana didn't help with the street cred either. Gene had become a cartoon character. KISS was no longer dangerous. The NWOBHM was dangerous. No disco tunes there. KISS was a watered down commercial entity compared to the days of Alive. A mere shadow of their former selves. The time had come. It didn't matter what masterpiece of a hard rock & heavy metal album they put out. It was done. Back then it seemed like a band who lost the plot as early as Fall of 1978. Finally, they deliver COTN which was great album for 1982. Too little and way too late. No one cared except the few of us who were still there. And even that album, as good as it was, hardly sounded like classic KISS. Just my take.

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Re: "Odyssey": Definitive Book On The Elder Coming Fall 2016

Post by The Demon » Wed Jan 06, 2016 9:15 pm

LordThurisaz wrote:The record company, I think, was trying to bury it. "Let's just release it, promote it very little, and hopefully it'll be forgotten and we all can move on." That was probably close to the record company's MO regarding the release and promotion of the album.
Thing is, that's exactly why it failed.

The quality of music really has little to do with album sales. Some of the best albums I've ever heard have only sold a few thousand copies, if that (granted those are on really small record labels that don't have much of a budget for promotion) Some albums that are pure dogshit committed to comact disc or vinyl have sold tens of millions of copies.

If a record company has the money and wants an album to sell, they can make it so.

KISS' record company viewed them as a low priority regardless, and therefore their album sales suffered.

Has nothing to do with how heavy or soft the album was, or what kind of lyrics the songs had.

That's just the way it is. Need I remind people that St. Anger was a #1 album and went Platinum?

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Re: "Odyssey": Definitive Book On The Elder Coming Fall 2016

Post by The Demon » Wed Jan 06, 2016 9:21 pm

LordThurisaz wrote:Hm. How can I say that? Maybe because KISS had promised a back to form heavy album. This isn't heavy, and certainly isn't what was promised.
"The Oath", "I", "Dark Light", "Escape From The Island", "Only You", "Mr. Blackwell".....

Where's the "soft" part, again? 3 out of 10 songs? ("Fanfare" I exclude)

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Re: "Odyssey": Definitive Book On The Elder Coming Fall 2016

Post by LordThurisaz » Wed Jan 06, 2016 10:31 pm

The Demon wrote:
LordThurisaz wrote:The record company, I think, was trying to bury it. "Let's just release it, promote it very little, and hopefully it'll be forgotten and we all can move on." That was probably close to the record company's MO regarding the release and promotion of the album.
Thing is, that's exactly why it failed.

The quality of music really has little to do with album sales. Some of the best albums I've ever heard have only sold a few thousand copies, if that (granted those are on really small record labels that don't have much of a budget for promotion) Some albums that are pure dogshit committed to comact disc or vinyl have sold tens of millions of copies.

If a record company has the money and wants an album to sell, they can make it so.

KISS' record company viewed them as a low priority regardless, and therefore their album sales suffered.

Has nothing to do with how heavy or soft the album was, or what kind of lyrics the songs had.

That's just the way it is. Need I remind people that St. Anger was a #1 album and went Platinum?
So which is it? Did the fans turn their backs on KISS because of Dynasty or Unmasked or does the quality not matter?

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Re: "Odyssey": Definitive Book On The Elder Coming Fall 2016

Post by Australia » Thu Jan 07, 2016 1:35 am

LordThurisaz wrote:
The Demon wrote:
LordThurisaz wrote:The record company, I think, was trying to bury it. "Let's just release it, promote it very little, and hopefully it'll be forgotten and we all can move on." That was probably close to the record company's MO regarding the release and promotion of the album.
Thing is, that's exactly why it failed.

The quality of music really has little to do with album sales. Some of the best albums I've ever heard have only sold a few thousand copies, if that (granted those are on really small record labels that don't have much of a budget for promotion) Some albums that are pure dogshit committed to comact disc or vinyl have sold tens of millions of copies.

If a record company has the money and wants an album to sell, they can make it so.

KISS' record company viewed them as a low priority regardless, and therefore their album sales suffered.

Has nothing to do with how heavy or soft the album was, or what kind of lyrics the songs had.

That's just the way it is. Need I remind people that St. Anger was a #1 album and went Platinum?
So which is it? Did the fans turn their backs on KISS because of Dynasty or Unmasked or does the quality not matter?
Kiss have continually disgruntled it's long time fans by rightly or wrongly chasing fame and fortune at any cost. It started with Destroyer and i am sure you have heard some of the old schoolers talk about that here.
But lets face it, although (IWM4LU) was a commercial success, those new fans are one album wonders, so for the success there comes a backlash from hardcore fans. Unmasked was the icing on the cake for many of them, it was a blatant attempt at pop and commercialism that turned away almost every solid Kiss fan. Kiss had become very UNCOOL!
So they tried to do something Musically accepted, and if you listen , you can here a Hard Rock album within THE ELDER.
Ace may not of been sold on the whole concept of THE ELDER, but he cared enough to smash that tape against the wall? IThe guy builds a state of the art recording studio in his home, as good as any other available, but Kiss decide to record elsewhere, there is the reason Ace really left Kiss, they give him a big Fuck You, and then he returned serve.

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Re: "Odyssey": Definitive Book On The Elder Coming Fall 2016

Post by Cold-Gin » Thu Jan 07, 2016 4:16 am

Australia wrote:I believe those pre Elder sessions at ACEINTHEHOLE show Kiss had very little to work with, a new rock album would have been mediocre at best, and would have done nothing to lift Kiss fan base in the states.
The only solution was to get Bob Ezrin back to help with the songs, but unfortunatly the record company then stepped in and fucked the whole concept up, by removing important dialogue and song running order.
Nothing would have worked for Kiss in 1981, if it was released in 1978 (and they had beaten Pink Floyd to the Table) we would by now be watching THE ELDER MOVIE on blu ray.
The concept is fine, and has worked for 1000s of years dating back to JESUS CHRIST, and then more recently SUPERMAN and STAR WARS!
Music From THE ELDER returned Kiss to some of it's Heaviest Music since Hotter Than Hell, eg, The Oath, Only You/Under The Rose and Mr Blackwell, and then i will add Escape From and Dark Light as alternatives.
I guess if you did not live through Dynasty (perticularly IWMFLU) or Unmasked you can not understand the timming nor nature of this album, so maybe you will never get it, so stop trying, OR maybe listen to The Elder in context and play thru Dynasty, then Unmasked , AND THEN THE ELDER, you may see it differently.
I purchased the Elder on release day. Crap then, crap now. :lol: :wink:

I am however interested in learning the reason for all this crap, so a book might help explain :)

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Re: "Odyssey": Definitive Book On The Elder Coming Fall 2016

Post by The Demon » Thu Jan 07, 2016 5:38 pm

LordThurisaz wrote:
The Demon wrote:
LordThurisaz wrote:The record company, I think, was trying to bury it. "Let's just release it, promote it very little, and hopefully it'll be forgotten and we all can move on." That was probably close to the record company's MO regarding the release and promotion of the album.
Thing is, that's exactly why it failed.

The quality of music really has little to do with album sales. Some of the best albums I've ever heard have only sold a few thousand copies, if that (granted those are on really small record labels that don't have much of a budget for promotion) Some albums that are pure dogshit committed to comact disc or vinyl have sold tens of millions of copies.

If a record company has the money and wants an album to sell, they can make it so.

KISS' record company viewed them as a low priority regardless, and therefore their album sales suffered.

Has nothing to do with how heavy or soft the album was, or what kind of lyrics the songs had.

That's just the way it is. Need I remind people that St. Anger was a #1 album and went Platinum?
So which is it? Did the fans turn their backs on KISS because of Dynasty or Unmasked or does the quality not matter?
How about the simple answer. Dynasty went Platinum.

Unmasked came about when the band was entering its second decade, and the KISS fad was dying off.

Other things were being catered to the general public, and KISS became a low priority.

Doesn't mean there weren't unhappy fans, but it doesn't mean that part of the diehard fanbase turning away is the reason those albums weren't as successful as previous albums.

Again... I'd like to think Metallica fans hate Load, ReLoad and St. Anger a whoooole lot more than KISS fans could ever hate Dynasty, Unmasked, or Elder - yet Metallica's albums all went Platinum and hit the #1 spot.

Why? Because Metallica's record label viewed them as a top priority and made sure the albums got out there.

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Re: "Odyssey": Definitive Book On The Elder Coming Fall 2016

Post by hooligan77 » Thu Jan 07, 2016 6:58 pm

I love this record..
cant wait for this book!!!

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Re: "Odyssey": Definitive Book On The Elder Coming Fall 2016

Post by Planet Caravan » Fri Jan 08, 2016 11:25 pm

The Demon wrote:
LordThurisaz wrote:The record company, I think, was trying to bury it. "Let's just release it, promote it very little, and hopefully it'll be forgotten and we all can move on." That was probably close to the record company's MO regarding the release and promotion of the album.
Thing is, that's exactly why it failed.
Actually you're both wrong. There's this myth that Polygram killed The Elder. That's not true.

The label initially pushed The Elder hard. They shot 2 videos and the band appeared live on Fridays and Solid Gold. That's actually MORE promotion in the US than Unmasked received.

It was only when it became obvious that the album was dead in early 82 did the label stop promotion.



The Demon wrote: KISS' record company viewed them as a low priority regardless, and therefore their album sales suffered.
Wrong. In 1980 Kiss signed a new multi million dollar record deal and at the time was one of Polygram's biggest acts. They needed Kiss to sell lots of albums to cover the huge expense.



The Demon wrote:
Some albums that are pure dogshit committed to comact disc or vinyl have sold tens of millions of copies.

If a record company has the money and wants an album to sell, they can make it so.
You're massively overestimating how much a record label can manipulate the record market. It was common practice back in the day to buy back copies of the label's own albums to get it onto the charts, and to pay for radio play.

But a label can only manipulate a release so far. The label can get it into the public eye, but if there is no public interest at all, the record will fizzle out. The album has to, for whatever reason, resonate with the public. If it resonates with its target market, it will sell.

Shania Twain's 10x platinum album resonated with millions of housewives. She knew her market. Same with Madonna. And I HATE Madonna. But she knows her market. Housewives and gay guys. And she panders to them every time.

Ace knew Kiss' market. So did Eric Carr. They knew that Kiss' market was teenage rock fans and that they had neglected them for too long, and needed to make the hard rock album to try to win them back. But Gene and Paul ignored their own fans.

The problem with The Elder is that it didn't resonate with ANYBODY. Its not classic Kiss, nor is it a good concept album, so it didn't appeal to anyone. The story is weak and the album is padded out with a cover and an unfinished jam.



The Demon wrote:
Need I remind people that St. Anger was a #1 album and went Platinum?

Again... I'd like to think Metallica fans hate Load, ReLoad and St. Anger a whoooole lot more than KISS fans could ever hate Dynasty, Unmasked, or Elder - yet Metallica's albums all went Platinum and hit the #1 spot.

Why? Because Metallica's record label viewed them as a top priority and made sure the albums got out there.
Your Metallica comparisons are WAY off the mark.

Metallica went from metal to heavy alternative, and then back to metal.

That is nowhere near as bad as Kiss going from hard rock to kiddie disco/pop then to medieval concept album. NOWHERE near as bad. And Metallica never abandoned their fans the way Kiss did.

And that whole time, Metallica was still a bigger band than Kiss were. It had nothing to do with the record label.

If it were all about the record label and not the music, then by your logic, Metallica/Lou Reed's "Lulu" should have been #1. Instead it debuted at #36 and then sunk without a trace.

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Re: "Odyssey": Definitive Book On The Elder Coming Fall 2016

Post by stutterer » Sat Jan 09, 2016 8:02 am

Is this book gonna have interviews with Kiss members and/or producer sharing thoughts on making of this album?
Maybe rare info and pictures culled from old press-releases?
Why exactly is it an exciting thing for a Kiss fan?

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Re: "Odyssey": Definitive Book On The Elder Coming Fall 2016

Post by BullSid » Sat Jan 09, 2016 8:49 am

If they had a hitsingle on The Elder things would be much more different.

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Re: "Odyssey": Definitive Book On The Elder Coming Fall 2016

Post by Augmented6 » Sat Jan 09, 2016 9:58 am

BullSid wrote:If they had a hitsingle on The Elder things would be much more different.
Don't think that was possible. America was apathetic to KISS by then. Polygram knew it. Howard Marks knew it. KISS probably knew it. Not sure about the rest of the world, however I think KISS was fighting to be more than just a trend. So they make this out in left field type of album and fall flat on their face. I don't think any album from COTN through Monster would have been successful in 1981. The apathy and KISS hate from the general public was just that strong by then.

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Re: "Odyssey": Definitive Book On The Elder Coming Fall 2016

Post by kiss76 » Sat Jan 09, 2016 5:00 pm

BullSid wrote:If they had a hitsingle on The Elder things would be much more different.

They had every chance of a hit single. "I" was released & promoted in Australia & the USA.
Not good enough...

KISS fans at the time thought that album was shit.
No revisionist thoughts & opinions can change that fact to the majority of fans who lived through that period of the bands history.
If the album was any good then KISS fans throughout Australia wouldn't have deserted the band like they did in 1981-82.
Had they released a great album after Unmasked then the fall may not have happened or at least the success of the Australian tour & fan base would have contributed to KISS continuing at a reasonable level.

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Re: "Odyssey": Definitive Book On The Elder Coming Fall 2016

Post by Ironfist76 » Sat Jan 09, 2016 9:05 pm

I think the points above about the album being a terrible idea and not "heavy" are correct. This album was a fantasy album for Gene, a Hail Mary for Paul, a cocaine-fueled fevered dream for Bob and a WTF for Ace and Eric. It is a horrible KISS album, plus terrible timing. I understand those who hate it. But thank God it was made. It is one of those beautiful/ugly creatures that you find in nature or music that can only be appreciated by a minority of like-minded people that heard the album at just the right time in their lives. Thank you Elder nymphs for inspiring its creation. What a beautiful disaster! :eric:

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Re: "Odyssey": Definitive Book On The Elder Coming Fall 2016

Post by FlamingRuth » Sat Jan 09, 2016 9:36 pm

Ironfist76 wrote: But thank God it was made. It is one of those beautiful/ugly creatures that you find in nature or music that can only be appreciated by a minority of like-minded people that heard the album at just the right time in their lives. Thank you Elder nymphs for inspiring its creation. What a beautiful disaster! :eric:
:cheers:
And that's what I call a great post. 8)

I, too, can understand how/why The Elder doesn't appeal to a lot of Kiss fans, but I'm one of the weird ones who embraced it.
HIt single, heavier production,better concept: none of these would have made any difference to me.
I love this beautiful/ugly freak of Kiss nature just the way it is.

Can't wait for the book.

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Re: "Odyssey": Definitive Book On The Elder Coming Fall 2016

Post by Rhiannon » Sun Jan 10, 2016 7:34 am

For me, i have always loved the album, and it has stood the test of time.As i have written on here before,its criminal the way Gene and in particular Paul have trashed the album over the years.They had a massive opportunity on the Symphony night to satisfy most of the KISS fans wants. and play 4-5 tracks from the album with the orchestra.

Paul and Gene/KISS career is littered with dumb musical decisions, this was one of them by not playing ELDER tracks that night..SYMPHONY was something different they tried, but could have been a whole lot more.

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