Somehow 2014 has turned into the year of KISS. Perhaps sparked by their joining the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and turning The Tonight Show into the 1976 Destroyer tour set earlier this year, there's an revitalized onslaught of activity surrounding the face-painted band.
Gene Simmons' tongue and Co. are currently on tour with Def Leppard in support of American military troops and personnel, but without original members Ace Frehley and Peter Criss. As BrooklynVegan points out, this has been a source of major argument amongst the KISS community, not least among which is Melvins co-founder King Buzzo, who has been quite vocal about his opinion on the subject.
"As far as I can tell, Ace Frehley and Peter Criss are fucked-up alcoholic junkie guys," he told the Missoula Independent. "So I don't think Gene Simmons and Paul Stanley should let those two fuck-ups ruin them. Why should they? Okay, they chose to be alcoholics and fuck-ups, now in doing that they have to face the consequences. Gene Simmons didn't do it, why should he face the consequences? That's what I think!"
Buzzo's gotten hatred in response, but the punk will not relent. He's currently running a tour diary via Vice (revisit the one he did for SPIN, "51 States in 51 Days") and took that as a venue to strike back against his Internet assailants. On July 9, he wrote, "So, for the record, you Kiss fan fuckheads who are giving ME shit for saying as it turns out, the exact same thing as Gene can KISS my ass!"
In other news, that "alcoholic and fuck-up" Frehley has a new solo album coming out next month and has already released a new classic rock song called "Gimme a Feelin." It's streaming here, but here's predicting you won't want to listen to it more than once (if at all, sorry).
Amongst all that conflict and negativity, one might forget what KISS is all about. But not White Lung's Mish Way who got high, had some fun at a KISS show, and wrote about it for Noisey. "A rock show is supposed to make you excited. It's supposed to leave you feeling totally fulfilled, entertained and blown away," she wrote, admitting she'd been converted to the KISS Army.
Lastly (for now), there's the KISS KRUISE coming up this fall. In its fourth year now, the annual Halloween boat trip will also feature Cheap Trick, Leogun, Purson, and the all-woman KISS cover band Priss. For those of you going — spoiler alert — chances are they'll play this song: