FOZZY frontman Chris Jericho has once again defended Paul Stanley's vocal performance on KISS's "End Of The Road" tour, explaining that the "Star Child" is still "one of the greatest rock and roll singers of all time."
Ever since the "End Of The Road" trek launched in January 2019, there has been persistent online chatter about Paul allegedly singing to a backing tape. The speculation stemmed from the fact that Stanley had been struggling to hit the high notes in many of the band's classic songs for a number of years.
During an interview with Australia's Triple M radio station, Chris discussed the criticism that has been leveled at Stanley for not being able to perform like he did 30 or 40 years ago.
"Listen, they're in their late 60s, early 70s, whatever it may be — I really don't care at this point," Chris said. "If they're out there playing and doing the best they can, and there's tricks they can use to make it better, if need be…
"Paul Stanley is one of the greatest rock and roll singers of all time. Nobody can tell me differently. And that, to me, is enough," he continued. "Ozzy Osbourne — one of the greatest singers of all time. All of these guys — even Paul McCartney is starting to sound a little weathered with his melody lines; that's some high stuff. And you look at a guy like Mick Jagger, and he still sounds pretty much the same, but his melodies were always in the same key; they never really went too high.
"To me, listen, I'm a musician. I get it. I don't care. I'm a fan. But if you're going to a rock and roll show and you're sitting in a crowd live and going, 'Wow, this band sounds like shit,' then maybe you're missing the point of why you're here in the first place. It's easy to watch a YouTube video back and go, 'That didn't sound great.' That's not the point. It's when you're there and you're in the moment and you're enjoying the show and the energy, that's the most important thing."
Jericho was also asked for his opinion on MÖTLEY CRÜE's Vince Neil, who has received harsh criticism online for his weight gain and alleged drop in vocal ability. A 2014 CRÜE concert review in the Tampa Bay Times famously called Vince the band's "weakest link," whose "barely audible mumbles" sounded "like a cat in heat."
"That, to me, is way worse, but that's always been Vince," Jericho reasoned. "I wish that Vince would maybe try a little harder, and I think if this tour happens, 'The Stadium Tour' [with DEF LEPPARD and POISON], I bet you he will. I bet you he gets the motivation to work on his conditioning a bit and maybe take some vocal lessons. Once again, he's a legendary guy, and if you're going to MÖTLEY CRÜE, you know what you're gonna get. But with all the pomp and circumstance and the hits that the crowd sings every word, if you're going there to bag on 'em with 50 thousand other people, you're missing the point. Those stadium shows were sold out, man. So my point is whether Vince sings every second word or whether he comes out there 160 pounds of abs and sounds like freaking Bruce Dickinson, it [doesn't] matter. People [go] because they wanna see MÖTLEY CRÜE. To me, if people are gonna go see it, it's not my position to bag on it. To me, if it's working, it's working."
Jericho himself has been suspected of relying on backing tapes during FOZZY's live performances. When the band played in Canada in November 2018, several concert-goers accused Jericho of singing along to pre-recorded tracks. After a video of FOZZY's Toronto gig surfaced online, former SKID ROW frontman Sebastian Bach weighed in, writing from his personal Facebook account: "Wow he mimes to a tape very well"
MÖTLEY CRÜE bassist Nikki Sixx recently said that Neil was "killing it" while working with "trainers" and "nutritionists" in preparation for "The Stadium Tour".
Last December, MÖTLEY CRÜE manager Allen Kovac told Fox Business that "some of" the bandmembers had enlisted outside help to get in shape for the trek. Kovac was referring to criticism of Neil for his supposed diminished singing ability and weight gain.