Spin the Bottle

Spin the Bottle

A Tribute to Kiss


As a Kiss fan, but not a fanatic, I enjoy this tribute album. Generally, there are two approaches to tributes: the extremely faithful to the original and the completely different interpretations. Fittingly, with many of the performers being alumni of hair bands from the ’70’s and ’80’s, most of the tracks are faithful renditions. As a whole, this is a tribute album that most Kiss fans would want to pick up, I think, especially with the long list of contributors whose musical pedigrees range from Styx and Vanilla Fudge to Twisted Sister and Cinderella to Testament and The Melvins.

The high points include the opening “Detroit Rock City” by the ubiquitous Dee Snider (I swear, I see and hear him more now than when Twisted Sister was putting out records), “King of the Night Time World” by WWE wrestler and part-time rock vocalist (Fozzy) Chris Jericho and a surprisingly gravel-voiced Mark Slaughter on “Cold Gin.”

The let-downs include Tommy Shaw singing “Love Gun” as if it were a Styx song and “I Want You” — Kip Winger just doesn’t really seem to click with the song. Granted, neither of those are my favorite Kiss songs, so it isn’t much of a loss to me.

My two favorite songs are “Shout it Out Loud,” with Lemmy on bass and vocals, backed by Jennifer Batten on guitar and Samantha Maloney on drums and “I Stole Your Love,” with Robin McAuley on vocals. The oddity of the “Shout it Out Loud” combination is how effectively it works. Lemmy remains Lemmy, growling out the Destroyer-era lyrics as if they were in a Motorhead song, and the ladies ably back him up, producing one of the truly unique covers on the album. The high point of “I Stole Your Love” rests completely in McAuley’s vocals. He starts the song off as a traditional Kiss version, but proceeds to hit notes that Paul Stanley couldn’t dream of hitting. If nothing else comes of this album, maybe some listeners will seek out some of his MSG work. The stale C.C. DeVille guitar solo in the middle only marginally takes away from the enjoyment of the song.

In the end, you have to ask yourself if you want to give Gene and Paul any more of your hard earned money for yet another version of music you probably already own. Nothing on this album screams, “OH MY GOD! YOU MUST BUY THIS IMMEDIATELY!” for a fan of any of the individual contributors. None of these tracks even come close to my personal favorite Kiss covers from Skid Row (“Come On And Love Me”), Anthrax (“Parasite”) and Pantera (“Cold Gin”). But, there are enough high points for a Kiss fan to get some enjoyment out of it. My advance copy did not come with the behind-the-scenes DVD that retail versions include. That alone may be enough to sway some potential buyers. If you are a Kiss completist, go ahead and buy it blind. If you are a fan of several of the artists who contribute to the album, feel free to pick it up. But if there are only one or two song/artist combinations that sound interesting to you, it’s probably not worth your investment.

KOCH Records: www.kochrecords.com/

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked with *

Cancel reply

Recently on Ink 19...

  • Rumble: The Indians Who Rocked The World
    Rumble: The Indians Who Rocked The World

    There’s more than black music influencing the evolution of Rock and Roll. Native American rhymes and ideas are every bit as significant, once you know to look for them.

  • Keith Morris
    Keith Morris

    Ink 19 slings a few questions to the punk rock pioneer Keith Morris on Trump, Calexit and looking back.

  • Soul Understated
    Soul Understated

    Soul Understated was a swizzle stick of jazz, funk, pop with a dash of Radiohead in the delightful DC cocktail.

  • Anca Miruna Lǎzǎrescu
    Anca Miruna Lǎzǎrescu

    That Trip We Took With Dad is the debut feature by acclaimed Romanian short film director Anca Miruna Lǎzǎrescu. Generoso Fierro sat down with Lǎzǎrescu during SEEFest to discuss the comedy and drama within the adaptation of her deeply personal family story for the screen.

  • Aware

    The Book Of Wind (Glacial Movements). Review by Carl F Gauze.

  • BANG: The Bert Berns Story
    BANG: The Bert Berns Story

    The music biz collides with the mob in this documentary chronicling the fast and dangerous life of legendary ’60s songwriter, producer, record mogul, Bert Berns.

  • The Suicide Commandos
    The Suicide Commandos

    Time Bomb (Twin/Tone). Review by Scott Adams.

  • Tricot

    3 (Topshelf Records). Review by Bob Pomeroy.

  • Bush

    One of the most successful rock bands of the ’90s attracted thousands of fans to its recent Orlando concert. Christopher Long was there.

  • New Found Glory
    New Found Glory

    New Found Glory celebrate 20 years of Pop Punk with a string of sold-out intimate dates at The Social. Jen Cray was there for night two.

From the Archives