Nick Carter of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reviewed the KISS/AEROSMITH tour when it came through town Saturday night (September 6).
" 'How y'all doing tonight?' bellowed KISS singer-guitarist Paul Stanley from the stage at Alpine Valley Music Theatre Saturday night. 'Everybody having a good time?' he asked.
"What seemed like a long second elapsed between the question and the roaring, affirmative response from the 30,000-plus crowd there to see the co-headliners KISS and AEROSMITH.
"It's possible the delay was because each individual's real answer likely would depend on what point in the evening the question applied to. The two bands, representing a significant slice of '70s-era album-rock, were about as opposite a classic-rock match as you could imagine.
"AEROSMITH, formed in the early '70s when rock was less than 20 years old, is among the top acts to build upon rock's blues and R&B roots. KISS, the band that merged the shock-rock of ALICE COOPER with an Americanized form of the schlock-rock emerging from British glam bands around the same time, is AEROSMITH's antithesis.
"Bias alert: This reviewer should start by admitting that he's never been enlisted in the KISS army. Forget about global warming and escalating religious wars, the sight of a crowd with members older than 15 spellbound and mouthing along to hoary rock anthems such as 'Beth' and 'Rock and Roll All Nite', is more telling a sign that the end is near.
"Objectivity you ask for? OK. The band — Stanley and fellow original members Gene Simmons (bass) and Peter Criss (drums) beside guest guitarist Tommy Thayer (replacing Ace Frehley) — competently worked their way through the three-chord-and-a-cloud-of-dust wonders comprising the cream of the KISS catalog. Also, there were many excellent flash pod explosions, fire-breathing displays and reflective mist-machine moments, too.
"But why anyone of legal driving age or older would pay $125 to see a bunch of geezers robotically thump their way through faded hits, with drops from the grease paint smeared across their faces dripping onto graying and billowing chest Afros, is beyond me." Read more.