Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Review: KISS – The Casablanca Singles Collection

 Source: Joe Geesin | www.withguitars.com

1974-1982 29 CD or 29 7" Box Set/ Universal

Now this is a very limited but seriously lavish box set – but then Kiss never did things by halves, especially during the makeup years. This set covers the classic era, considered by many (myself included) the best. There is SO much classic stuff here, and it covers the band’s career from the first album up to when lead guitarist Ace Frehley was replaced by Vinnie Vincent.

The first single Nothin’ To Lose is a little pedestrian by later standards, and Kissin’ Time (which I do rather like) is a tad cheesy but then it’s onto Rock’n’Roll All Nite (both studio and live versions) and Strutter and, well, you know all the period hits.

The Surprise hit Beth and the disco hit I Was Made For Loving You are all a great listen, as are the singles from the four solo albums.

Kiss were never really a solo kind of band, better known for their glam riffs, but Ace Frehley does pull some good solos and a lot of decent guitar work..

Most of the vocals are split between Simmons and Stanley, but there are a handful of tracks sung by Criss and Frehley (not just the solo singles). And if you explore deeper there is the odd track where bass is played by Frehley too.

The full track listing is below but it’s worth noting that the solo singles are as originally released, with mask insert and on coloured vinyl. Most of them come in picture sleeves, some are European variations.

The tracks are:

Nothin’ To Lose / Love Theme From Kiss
Kissin’ Time / Nothin’ To Lose
Strutter / 100,000 Years
Let Me Go Rock’n’Roll / Hotter Than Hell
Rock And Roll All Night / Getaway
C’mon And Love Me / Getaway
Rock And Roll All Night (live) / Rock And Roll All Night
Shout It Out Loud / Sweet Pain
Flaming Youth / God Of Thunder
Detroit Rock City / Beth
Beth / Detroit Rock City
Hard Luck Woman / Mr Speed
Calling Dr Love / Take Me
Christeen Sixteen / Shock Me
Love Gun / Hooligan
Shout It Out Loud (live) / Nothin’ To Lose (live)
Rocket Ride / Tomorrow And Tonight (live)
Strutter ’78 / Shock Me
Hold Me Touch Me / Goodbye (Paul Stanley)
New York Groove / Snow Blind (Ace Frehley)
Radioactive / See You In your Dreams (Gene Simmons)
Don’t You Let Me Down / Hooked On Rock’n’Roll (Peter Criss)
You Matter To Me / Hooked On Rock’n’Roll (Peter Criss)
I Was Made For Lovin’ You / Hard Times
Sure Know Something / Dirty Livin’
Shandi / She’s So European
Tomorrow / Naked City
A World Without Heroes / Dark Light
I Love It Loud / Danger

This is as extravagant as you’d expect from Ki$$ but looks a lovely set. Some fantastic music but so OTT in both packaging and price it’s only for the hardcore.

The music is well exploring by cheaper means if you can. The only omission (this is NOT a complete singles set) are the 2 12”singles issued with the extended 8 minute version of I Was Made For Loving you. 9/10

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