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With their 1976 albumDestroyer, the band's fifth release in two years, Kiss began to expand their fan base by shedding a bit of their edge, taking on a more melodic sound and a less menacing image. The Peter Criss ballad "Beth," written for his wife, is the most sentimental love ballad the group ever recorded, and songs like "Detroit Rock City" and "Shout It Out Loud" had the kind of arena-rock punch that kept subscriptions to the Kiss Army at an all-time high. Despite, or because of, the blatantly commercial direction the band seemed to be heading in, 1976 was the most creatively rewarding period in its lengthy career. In addition to releasingDestroyer, the band pumped out the equally touted albumRock and Roll Over, which included the pounding "Take Me" and the groovin' "Calling Dr. Love." The only finer year was 1978, when the band starred in the classic B-grade flickKiss Meets the Phantom of the Park. --Jon Wiederhorn
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Label:  Island, Mercury
Release Date:  September 16, 2008
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review by . August 13, 2009
KISS' Destroyer was, at the time of its release, the most experimental album that the band had put out. It was also the first certified platinum album for the group. Thirty-plus years later, the album is still regarded as one of the band's greatest efforts. Why? For the simple fact that this album not only appealled to hardcore KISS fans, it reached out to the mainstream as well.     One could argue that this album is more like a mini greatest hits package than just KISS' fourth …
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