Maybe it was seeing AC/DC on the cover of Rolling Stone a few weeks ago. Or, more to the point, maybe it was the very thought that Angus Young, still prancing around in his knickers and beanie at age 57, could lead his merry mates to the top of the charts with a new CD. All I know is it doesn't seem mere coincidence that, having not released a studio album since 1998's Psycho Circus, Kiss has just let word leak out that that they're getting ready to record again.
In a recent interview with askmen.com, Paul Stanley divulged that he and Kiss co-founder Gene Simmons, along with current Kiss-ees guitarist Tommy Thayer and drummer Eric Singer, will soon begin work on a collection of new material."It's going to be very much a vintage, classic '70s Kiss album," Stanley promises, "without much regard to what's happened since then; it's back to the roots." Presumably, Stanley is talking solely in musical terms, which means we shouldn't be expecting Gene Simmons to suddenly quit dyeing his hair, or undoing his facelift. But, hey, if AC/DC can successfully pull off the everything-old-is-new-again trick, why can't Kiss, who just about wrote the (painted face) book on the subject of musical regurgitation even before Angus got fitted for his first pair of kneepants?
In the askmen.com article, (by the way, this website has an advice column written by one "Doc Love," which, as any loyal Kiss Army foot soldier can tell you, may well stem from the old Simmons classic "Calling Doctor Love"), Stanley is asked why, unlike some of their predecessors, Thayer and Singer wear the same makeup as original members Ace Frehley and Peter Criss.
Here's what he says: The idea that we should dilute the four icons, which are world-known (not by name, but by character) and come up with like "Frog Man" or "Turtle Boy" was a big misstep. Those iconic figures are known worldwide; you show anybody in the world a photo of KISS and they'll tell you it's KISS. So, it just sold everybody short to think that when somebody left the band that they should take those characters with them."
I guess that means that if Paul and Gene ever decide to hang it up, they can hire replacement players to go out in their makeup and keep recycling the riffs they've been recycling all the way to the bank for 35 (count 'em) years now.
In the meantime, we leave you with this wonderful tidbit from the Stanley interview.
Q: "What's the one quality you think all men should have?"
You gotta love it.