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Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Rush featured in new KISS biography Nothin' to Lose: The Making of KISS (1972-1975)
2:57PM EST | comments (32) |

A new biography focusing on the early career of heavy metal pioneers KISS was released a couple of weeks ago on September 10th titled Nothin' to Lose: The Making of KISS (1972-1975). Rush toured extensively with KISS as an opening act during 1974-5, and the band is heavily featured in chapter 26 of the book (Heavy Metal Masters) on pages 375-383. The chapter includes interview snippets from members of KISS and Rush along with some members from both road crews; Rush lighting director Howard Ungerleider and the late Skip Gildersleeve are both quoted. Both groups comment extensively on the fun they had touring together, and the deep bond they developed. Here's what KISS frontman Paul Stanley had to say about Rush:

There are good guys in bands and there are great guys. Rush were great guys, fun to be around, no pretense. We seemed to share a sense of humor. Our backgrounds were similar. We shared a great bond with the whole band.

And here are some of Alex Lifeson's comments:

We hung out a lot. We'd go out to eat and hang out with each other. Gene and I used to correspond through the mail and I still have a few of those letters. There was a very heartfelt connection between both bands even though musically we were moving in two completely different directions. Their vision was looking at rock and roll as entertainment whereas we were looking to make the album and write the song. But despite all of those differences there was a real sense of unity in what we were doing and how we were doing it together. If there's affection towards us from their camp there's certainly lots of it from ours.

The book also includes some photos from when the bands toured together including this one. You can check it out yourself by going to the book's Amazon listing and click on the book cover's Look Inside feature. Then just search inside this book using the word Rush. The chapter mentioned above is on page 375. Rush also were mentioned in recent autobiographies from former KISS members Ace Frehley and Peter Criss. Thanks to RushFanForever for the heads up.

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#32 - Posted 9/27/13 @11:19PM by What-A-Rush

I will say to your comment #3 I agree with you regarding the first Kiss album: it truly is their BEST album and arguably one of the most criminally underrated debut rock albums of all time. Great comment, despite our differing opinion. Great thread, thanks RIAB.
#31 - Posted 9/27/13 @10:52PM by What-A-Rush

To me this is a topic that NEVER gets old. I LOVE the fact that both Kiss and Rush still speak fondly of their time touring together, almost 40 years later! You don't hear about that kind of camaraderie nowadays. For me to say this must have been a DREAM TOUR to witness is a major UNDERSTATEMENT! I've said it once and I'll say it again: ANYBODY who was lucky enough to have seen this tour SHOULD FEEL HONORED! If you wanted the best, you sure as hell got the best ( pun VERY intended!)...on this tour anyway, whether you know it or not! Sigh...but I digress!

As a longtime Kiss fan, I find it unfortunate that some in the rock community see them as nothing more than "show". By and large the music of Kiss HAS held up over time very well. True, they weren't the best "musicians" around, and yet they still had GREAT SONGS! Ultimately, that's the reason why they've survived, in various incarnations. The fact that Kiss created perhaps the most collectively identifiable group image in the history of popular music would mean NOTHING if they couldn't deliver the goods musically. It was a lethal combination, but at times, I imagine it ( the image) was a "cross to bear" as well, so to speak. Either way, it worked very well, and as a result, they could kick anybody's ass live. When I think about it, the fact that they earned Rush's respect so early on says a lot about them.


When all is said and done, I still consider Kiss to be the greatest American rock and roll BAND of all time, no matter how PATHETIC Paul and Gene's obsession with the BRAND has become! In short order, without the MUSIC, there would be NO Kiss! Great comments everybody pro AND con!
#30 - Posted 9/26/13 @5:39PM by ToadBrother [contact]

I really got an impression from BTLS that Kiss had a pretty major influence on Rush's work ethic. Geddy called them the hardest working band in rock and roll, and certainly for a young band on their first major tour as an opening act, seeing the discipline that Kiss did put into its shows must have been pretty influential.

Yes, Kiss became a bit of a parody of itself in the late 70s and early 80s, and its attempts to go mainstream by and large lead to some pretty dubious musical directions, the first few albums, including Alive, are darned good rock and roll albums, as good as anyone else was putting out in that genre at the time. Say what you will, but Detroit Rock City is a killer track, one of the great hard rock tracks of the 1970s.

Still, I wouldn't go out of my way to see them now. They are indeed a band that has lingered long past their best before date.
#29 - Posted 9/26/13 @5:13PM by liquidmuse3 [contact]

Yeah, I dunno why one has to go out of their way to slag Kiss whenever they're even remotely mentioned. To me, they're the ultimate in guilty pleasure, though yes, running into them as a young kid will instill a certain sense of innate nostalgia. But to me, the look was cool (in an otherworldly way), Stanley's a good singer & (pop) songwriter, Simmons has a good growly voice, Criss had some groove (or at least syncopation), & Frehley was a pretty blitzing soloist. A TON of respectable musicians grew up loving Kiss, & to me the songs are by & large fun & catchy...so I dunno what the problem is, other than yes, obviously the whole thing is a mite bit cheesy ;o)
#28 - Posted 9/26/13 @4:40PM by jiminseattle [contact]

Kiss put on a hell of a show in '76 but you have to consider the times and my age at the time. Alive had just been released a year or so earlier and it was all the buzz. Would I see them now, not a chance. J
#27 - Posted 9/26/13 @3:58PM by random_sample [contact]

#25- Yeah, and Geddy also talked about how much they learned from Kiss, on the road, in terms of being a hard working ,touring band.
#26 - Posted 9/26/13 @3:57PM by random_sample [contact]

I never got into Kiss' music, but also never really had a problem with them. They had their "shtick" , or style and it worked well for them, obviously. Lots of fans, lots of albums sold, etc ,etc. As far as comparing Kiss and Rush, music wise...it's apples and oranges...and subjective. I know Alex made a comment about Paul Stanley's reaction to Caress of steel , when Alex had played it for him right after they recorded it and apparently (in Alex's words) "he just didn't get it". Meaning...didn't like it. But, for me...that's not a big deal. Not everyone "gets" Rush's music. Kiss and Rush obviously got along great ,when they toured together and personally, I think it's nice, whenever I read something Rush has to say ,or something the guy's in Kiss have to say, when it comes to reminiscing about when they toured together. It's both ways, as far the music goes. Kiss' music wasn't Rush's cup of tea, either. But they could still like each other as human beings , or just guys hanging out, right? You could compare it to Stewart Copeland ,from the Police. Neil's been a big fan of the Police. Neil and Stewart are friends . But Stewart Copeland obviously doesn't "get" Rush's music, either. I've read a few things, where that is evident- yet he hangs out with Neil sometimes and they are friends.
As far as Kiss goes...their music has never thrilled me that much, but I think seeing them in concert would have been fun.
#25 - Posted 9/26/13 @2:12PM by MGRushFan

#4, wow, that was virtually a carbon copy of what Geddy said in the documentary.
#24 - Posted 9/26/13 @1:08PM by snowdog20 [contact]

great... now I can't get the lyrics to "Lick it Up" out of my head.
#23 - Posted 9/26/13 @12:04PM by jupeguyowensound [contact]

Well I'm still a million bucks shy of being a millionaire but other than that I'm good. One thing I will say about Kiss is that when they decided to take the make-up off and we saw what they looked like I'm glad they put it back on!
I know, mean, uncalled for, whatever.

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