6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
Another pointless review...,
This review is from: The Very Best of Kiss (Audio CD)
We need another review of this CD like we need another KISS compilation, i.e. a hole in the head. However, I'll put my two cents worth in (and I'm probably being generous in my monetary evaluation...)
I'm not a "KISS Army" sized KISS fan but I think they have a lot of great songs in their catalog and to compile the best onto a single CD is a task that is certain to miss the mark by most fans' standards. I can see where most of these KISS comps serve a purpose though. DOUBLE PLATINUM is the original KISS "best of" and will never be duplicated or bettered simply because it contains the best loved songs from the band's original incarnation. It's pre-disco, pre-Elder, pre-band member changes, pre-taking off the make-up, pre-Michael Bolton power ballads.
SMASHES, THRASHES & HITS is in another (lower) class all by itself. It attempted to cover the band's entire career by including DOUBLE PLATINUM-era classics, more recent material, some remixes, a re-recording, and some new material. It crashed and burned in all of these areas leaving everyone who was showing any interest completely unsatisfied. The experience of listening to SMASHES, THRASHES & HITS was akin to a groupie making her way to Gene Simmons' dressing room for some serious oral action, only to find Christopher Cross waiting for her inside.
YOU WANTED THE BEST, YOU GOT THE BEST was a collection of their best live recordings.
GOLD and the MILLENIUM COLLECTION are just further entries into the record company's ongoing marketing campaign to put visually identical "best of's" in the stores of virtually every artist that ever produced a hit record of any consequence.
So THE VERY BEST OF KISS is the first level headed attempt at a single disc career spanning compilation of KISS' most popular material (including studio and live cuts) and not containing any weird edits, remixes or rerecordings.
Okay, so we've got 21 cuts of hot KISS action.
Does it hit all the high marks? Everyone can probably agree that it doesn't. Seriously, how could it?
What's on here that doesn't belong? What's not on here that is indespensable? Everyone will have their own answers to those last two questions, but I think the compilers did a fairly decent job of cramming one disc chock full of KISS classics.
What's not on here that I would like to see? "ROCKET RIDE"!!!, "Do You Love Me", "Shandi", "Sure Know Something", "A World Without Heroes", "I", "Heaven's On Fire", "Tears Are Falling", "Unholy", Ace's "Rip It Out" and Gene's "Radioactive". But my list has two songs from THE ELDER so I probably deserve to have the KISS Army give me a serious beating.
As far as the greed argument goes, any record company is going to throw out compilations like this (particularly around Christmas time) to capitalize once again on a hit artists' ongoing popularity. It's usually the record company's greed that's evident, not the recording artists'.
So what exactly is the purpose that is being served by THE VERY BEST OF KISS? It replaces SMASHES, THRASHES & HITS which contained an inferior rerecording of "Beth", some awful remixes (whose lame idea was it to tone down the drums on "I Love It Loud"??!!) and new material that should have gone unreleased at the time. (The reviewers here that are bemoaning this compilation's lack of any new material might want to be reminded of "Let's Put The X In Sex", one of the worst songs ever recorded by anyone.) The original hits that weren't remixed for that collection are hampered by inferior remastering (probably not from the original tapes) resulting in poor sound quality.
At any rate, I think there's room for one more KISS collection and this is a pretty darn good one.
Oh, wait. I forgot about GREATEST KISS. So we really didn't need this collection after all, huh?
Oh well, never mind.
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Showing 1-2 of 2 posts in this discussion
Initial post: Feb 23, 2008 6:18:09 PM PST
David Kenner says:
After posting my review of this KISS compilation, and going on and on about how it's usually the record company's greed, and not the artist's, that results in so much product (i.e. "best of's" and "greatest hits" collections) being heaped upon the music buying public, I have to say this about Gene Simmons. I've seen him on THE CELEBRITY APPRENTICE and THE HENRY ROLLINS SHOW and I have to agree with those who were accusing him of being the greedy one in this scenario. I really like KISS and I'm sure I always will but it's disheartening to hear a favorite musician discount his band's entire musical legacy and say that it's only the "obscene amounts of money" he's being paid that is important to him. Simmons is so far removed from his original fan base and so far removed from the very ideas that inspired rock and roll music in the first place that it's just sad. I don't regret his success and I won't discount his talent but he seems to be one of those individuals who have their priorities so far out of place that I am just dumfounded by his comments. If I'm being critical, let me leave him lots of room but he seems to make no bones about the fact that the money is the only reason he does what he does.
In reply to an earlier post on Mar 2, 2009 1:00:24 PM PST
SPOT ON with your take of Simmons. Very sad indeed that he is like that. Great review!
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