Pros: You get to hear the musical ability of this band.
Cons: Why do they ever let Ace sing?
The Bottom Line: A great band, a great concert idea...It could not help but be good!!
You have to give these guys their due. Rocking for the past zillion years, they have continuously been able to produce great rock and roll! Yes, they have had their ups and downs. But through it all, the band has stayed true to itself...and it's music.
This album is almost a dedication to a lifetime of rock and roll. Most anyone near my age will look at the musical offerings here and be able to trace their own lives since their high school years. This is a trip down memory lane and at the same time, a trip that was at the time, seen as a new beginning!
This concert brought together the old and new. Reuniting the original band for the first time in years. From this beginning, there emerged one of their best studio albums in years and one of the most successful concert tours in history!!
So sit back and enjoy an evening like no other in the unplugged series. This is one that, for many KISS fans, is a very special concert!
Kicking off the disc, is the song that benefits most under the unplugged format. "Comin' Home" from their 1974 release "Hotter Than Hell." This version, retains all the spark of an up and coming rock band and at the same time, seems to have found it's own sense of maturity with the non-electric update! One of my early favorites from these guys, this version only re-enforces what I thought of the tune originally!
One thing that I love about these guys, is that they are not about to sit there and play a greatest hits package. This is evident by their next offering. "Plaster Caster" from the "Love Guns" album, is Gene Simmons ode to a common practice between rock stars and groupies. Gene tackles this tune like he always does when the subject matter is sex, with a vengence!! A fun tune that I am glad to see included. This one is more about attitude than anything else.
The band next delves back to the "Hotter Than Hell" album for one of their early power ballads called "Goin' Blind. This one also gets a great rework here. The guitar work is super and being unplugged, really shows off the musical ability of these guys. Something that they never get any respect for, but just listen to this one!
One of their biggest selling albums was "Destroyer." The song "Do You Love Me" is one of the songs that made it so. Another example of great rock and roll, this one is definetly different than the original, but the acoustic guitars really add a dynamic sound to it. Very powerful and one that also benefits greatly by being unplugged!
"Domino" from the highly underrated album "Revenge" is a great addition here. One of the best song that the band has done in years, this one is a deep, dark Simmons smoker that still retains all it's fire here! This one is worth the price of the CD alone!
The song "Sure Know Something" from the "Dynasty" album, carries over very well. This one becomes a very different song on this album. Here it seems almost like a piano bar version. This is one that needs the amps!! Still a good song but stick with the original here.
I was also very happy to see that they included this song from "Music From The Elder" album. "A World Without Heroes" which was co-written by Lou Reed, was originally a very slick produced tune that almost had a Sinatra type atmosphere to it. On this disc, it gets more of an edge and the results are magnificent! A great addition to this CD, it is a song that you might not have heard before.
The guys go way back to the album "Dressed To Kill" to pull out the song "Rock Bottom." This song was always one of my personal favorites with it's mellow intro that suddenly explodes into this heavy metal cruncher! Unplugged, the band pulls it off a lot better than I thought they could. A great version for the hard core fan and one that will appeal to new fans also!
A really unusual addition to this disc is the song "See You Tonight" from the Gene Simmons solo album. It is the only inclusion from their solo work. This one is a good choice though! You will almost think of The Beatles as you listen to this song. Great tune done as good as I have ever heard it!
One of KISS's most dynamic songs is the power ballad "I Still Love You" from the album "Creatures of The Night." I thought that this one would fail unplugged, but here again the boys do a super job of pulling it off! One of the main reasons again, is their musical ability shines through with the acoustic instruments. A powerful number that remains so here! Great song again!!
The "Revenge" album gets another plug with the great ballad "Every Time I Look At You." This has to be one of the best ballads that the band ever did. I think it rivals Beth in that category! Stanley does a fabulous job with it here. One of the highlights of the disc!!
Well, we get some old familiar players for the rest of the disc. Ace Frehley and Peter Criss, original members of the band, return to help with this concert.
The old line up kicks off with the cover of the Rolling Stones "2000 Man" originally off the "Dynasty" album. I guess they picked Ace to sing this one because he sounds the most British! Not one of the best offerings, it would not have been one of my picks for the disc.
You know that they would have to have Peter sing their biggest hit of all time, the tender ballad he wrote for his wife "Beth." This song is perfect for the unplugged format. It comes off great and brings back great memories of a great band!!
Now the band gets all the players, old and new, together to play the last couple songs. The six man band rips through the fantastic song "Nothin' To Lose." This song is party rock and roll at it's very, very best. Enjoy this one, they don't do it like this anymore!!
To finish off the album, what would you expect but their first hit and the anthem to which they will be forever linked, "Rock And Roll All Nite!!" As an added touch, the original band members each take a verse and sing it. Kind of a tribute to those that made the song what it is!! This became a hit song all over again with this version and rightfully so. Great rock and roll will never die!!!
This has to be one of the best unplugged albums done. It is what the series was suppose to be about. Taking groups that do not normally do this type of thing and let them go at it! Sometimes, like here, the results are spectacular!!
It's no secret that KISS' popularity was solidified by their live albums, particularly 1975's Alive!, and their live shows. Full of electricity, smoke, fireworks, theatrics, and tongue-in-cheek tunes, KISS worked their lives shows as if each one was their last. When the popular 1990's MTV series Unplugged, where popular acts were stripped of their electronic equipment and played acoustic sets, announced that the hottest band in the world … more
MTV UNPLUGGED was recorded live as part of MTV's "Unplugged" television series. Kiss: Paul Stanley (vocals, acoustic guitar); Gene Simmons (vocals, acoustic bass); Eric Singer (vocals, drums); Bruce Kulick (acoustic guitar). Additional personnel includes: Jon Grindstaff (conductor, arranger); Ace Frehley (vocals, acoustic guitar); Peter Criss (vocals, drums); Phil Ashley (piano). Recorded live at Sony Music Studios, New York, New York. Personnel: Ace Frehley, Paul Stanley (vocals, guitar); Peter Criss (vocals, drums); Gene Simmons (vocals); Jon Grindstaff (strings); Phillip Ashley (piano); Eric Singer (drums). Recording information: 1996. Director: Joe Perota. Editors: Tat; Ralph. Never given their due by critics but loved by legions of fans, Kiss have become accepted in rock folklore partly because of their ability to write fun songs about groupies, sex and the glamour of being a rock star, without coming off as pretentious louts. These topics get revisited on MTV UNPLUGGED, with the added bonus of prod... Song List: Disc 1 1. Comin Home 2. Plaster Caster 3. Goin' Blind 4. Do You Love Me 5. Domino 6. Sure Know Something 7. World Without Heroes, A 8. Rock Bottom 9. See You Tonight 10. I Still Love You 11. Every Time I Look at You 12. 2000 Man 13. Beth 14. Nothin' to Lose 15. Rock and Roll All Nite