Personalities | Kiss | Seventies | Rock

(Vocal/instrumental group, 1973–present)

Kiss, founded by New Yorkers Gene Simmons (bass, vocals) and Paul Stanley (guitar, vocals), combined the showmanship of glam rock and the drive of heavy metal. Recruiting Peter Criss (drums, vocals) and Paul ‘Ace’ Frehley (guitar, vocals) and adopting the costumes and elaborate stage make-up without which they never appeared in public, Kiss’s early albums made little impact but their reputation grew via an increasingly extravagant stage show. The classic live album, 1975’s Alive, went quadruple platinum in the States.

The ambitious Destroyer (1976), Rock And Roll Over (1976) and Love Gun (1977) consolidated Kiss’s position as America’s top rock act along with a second live set Alive II (1977), the fourth side of which contained new studio material. All four members released solo albums simultaneously in 1978. Criss and Frehley had departed by the time Kiss unmasked in 1983 although they, and the make-up, would return.

Styles & Forms | Seventies | Rock
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Source: The Definitive Illustrated Encyclopedia of Rock, general editor Michael Heatley


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