KISS - Turning Stone Casino Event Center, Verona, NY- July 28, 2011
Review/photos by John Jeffrey
What does a band, that has been touring for the better part of 40 years, who has recently finished a 2 year World tour, which is now taking a break from recording it's 20th studio album, do next? A summer tour, of course. KISS, the "Hottest Band in the Land," just wrapped up their 18 date "Lost Cities Tour," which spanned across the months of June and July, wrapping up on 7/28 in Verona, NY. Attending this show was quite a treat, as KISS performed inside of the Turning Stone Casino Event Center. The Event Center holds about 4,000, which made this concert one of the smallest venues KISS has performed in (aside from a 'one off' club gig or their 1995 Unplugged/Convention tour) since the beginning of their career. Size didn't matter, as the great acoustics of the room emphasized KISS' bombastic sound, and the sold out crowd roared like there was 40,000 people in attendance. Ever since seeing the footage of the open air Rio concert from 1983, I've always felt that the band's sound suffers slightly outdoors, so it was nice to hear their electric magic in such an intimate arena.
The show itself was a stripped down version of the 2010 "Hottest Show on Earth" tour, as the stage was a combination of the "Alive 35" and "Sonic Boom" sets. There were 2 walls of amplifiers, covered by video screens, on either side of Eric Singer's awesome drum kit, and instead of the lighted KISS logo being mounted to the front of the drum riser again, it was perched high above, behind Eric. This time, there were video screens on the front of Eric's riser, looking connected to the screens placed in front of the amps. And as opposed to having one large video screen as their backdrop, there were 2 smaller video screens placed on the left and right of the KISS logo.