Thursday, October 29, 2009

"Sonic Boom" Review

Patrick Donovan

DESPITE announcing more ''farewell'' tours than John Farnham, Kiss continue to sell out shows around the world.

But it's the 30-year-old classics the Kiss Army now screams for.

And with Gene Simmons being so unashamed about ''only being in it for the money'', Kiss' creativity appeared to have dried up. But Kiss have defied convention and their first album since 1998's average Psycho Circus is a return to form.

The revival can be attributed to guitarist Tommy Thayer, who has taken on the silver, black and white space trooper make-up of troubled former axeman Ace Frehley on album No. 19.

Thayer writes, sings and plays some of the band's best riffs in years on Modern Day Delilah and I'm an Animal, which seems to be inspired by MC5 song Call Me Animal.

Of course, the lyrics are beyond Spinal Tap but that's all part of the fun. Simmons has become a caricature of himself and on Hot and Cold, he leaves nothing up to the imagination when he invites the listener to ''feel my tower of power''.

Silly and cliched but spirited and darn good fun.