Kiss – London, Islington O2 Academy - 2nd March 2010 Print E-mail
Written by Fraser Munro   
Friday, 12 March 2010 07:15

stuff_103From the moment the band ambled onto the stage in full garb minus the customary "You wanted the best, you got the best" introduction you could feel this was not going to be your 'normal' KISS show.

This was never ever going to be a 2 hour KISS arena extravaganza, more a 'showcase' for the UK mass media in order to boost 'steady' ticket sales for May's 'Sonic Boom - From the Beginning to the Boom' tour. As a bi-product, this was going to be a very special night of 'KISS in yer face' for the lucky fans who managed to run the 'Ticket-web' gauntlet, or like me, had to resort to paying way, way over the odds on the ever lovable Ebay.

Twelve songs in just over an hour in a tiny club in North London and only announced the week before. A slice of KISS heaven for the 500 fans crammed in front of the stage and some free drinks & entertainment for the 300 or so assembled industry bods on the VIP balcony upstairs. A surreal experience for some, and perhaps more than just a free night out for others.

Me, I just couldn't get over it happening a few feet away from me. This was Kiss in probably the smallest club they'd played in make up in maybe 35 years and I was in touching distance of Dame Paul Stanley! Oddly I had no urge to touch this lycra clad rock warrior, just to grab one of the many guitar picks he threw or gobbed into the swirling mass of fans in front of him.

stuff_070The opening salvo of 'Modern Day Delilah' and 'Cold Gin' may probably have not hit the mark in any other setting, but this was no ordinary setting! Last time I saw the band it was in a 15,000 plus capacity area in Philadelphia, little would I have suspected that in less than 6 months I would be here, experiencing the first of my 10 KISS shows of 2010 in a club just 10 minutes walk from work!


Paul's voice was much stronger than I had been expecting given the 3 month lay off since the last tour and as usual he held the audience in the palm of his hand. The band generally seemed to be having a ball, Tommy and Eric, the 'new guys', were outstanding, although Gene did seem to be struggling a little due to a 'massive costume and super sweaty club' combo.

It was great that the band dug a little further into the 'Sonic Boom' album with the track 'Say Yeah' but I did expect a few other new tracks given this was primarily a promo event.

No pyro, fire breathing or flying tonight, just an airing of 10 KISS classics plus the 2 newbies already mentioned. However, main set closer 'Rock And Roll All Nite' was accompanied by an insane papery downpour of confetti, and for the whole of the song you could barely see the stage.

Gene chose to call early doors on the night, axing 'Deuce', 'Shout It Out Loud' and 'Lick It Up' from their set due to the CO2 build up caused by the insane confetti storm resulting in a genuine shortness of breathable air on and around the stage. So with the single song encore of 'Detroit Rock City' the show was brought to a rather abrupt end.

Definitely a night to remember for 'we few, we happy few, we band of (KISS) brothers'.