KISS bassist/vocalist Gene Simmons has told the Associated Press that the rockasaurus spectacle KISS/AEROSMITH tour that launched last summer is getting near the end of its final leg, with a swing of U.S. dates — including a Dec. 18 gig at the Forum in L.A. — wrapping up toward the end of December. And then, he says, "We'll start back up in April. We will continue, however, without AEROSMITH."So whatever happened to KISS' much-hyped retirement from touring? "That had to do with Ace Frehley and Peter Criss," says Gene of the bandmates who, along with Paul Stanley and himself, comprised the original KISS lineup. "Peter is now healthy. Ace has had a back-and-forth battle with substances, and he told me if he didn't get off the road, he was going to kill himself," says Gene. In other news, Simmons' much-hyped magazine, Gene Simmons Tongue, has apparently gone "on hiatus" following the publication of its fifth issue. According to a posting from publisher Allen Tuller on the magazine's official web site, "Gene is on tour with AEROSMITH and the tour has been extended indefinitely. With this in mind, we felt it was only fair to go on hiatus until Gene is involved in the publication of the magazine on a day-today basis and the tour schedule simply does not allow sufficient time right now to devote to publishing the next issue of GST." There is no word right now as to when — or if — the magazine will resume publication.