October 02, 2009

Sure, they wanted to rock and roll all night, but KISS short circuited just one song into their Air Canada Centre show Friday night.

After an explosive fire display, the veteran rockers were about half way through their opening song, King Of The Night Time World, when they appeared to lose power causing the audience to boo loudly.

Without an active microphone, singer-guitarist Paul Stanley held up his hands and mouthed that the group, rounded out by bassist Gene Simmons, drummer Eric Singer and lead guitarist Tommy Thayer, would be back "in about five to ten minutes" and they walked off stage.

Shortly thereafter, and with little in the way of further reaction from the KISS army, the quartet returned and Stanley explained what was going on: "There is a problem with the electricity and the power at the ACC, but we have fixed it and we are here to kick your ass," he said.

After checking their gear, the group then launched into Deuce and the show, as they say, went on for another two-and-a-half hours.

"It started to look like we might have to reschedule," said Stanley, 57, afterwards, prompting more boos. "Last night (on Thursday), Montreal said they'd kick your ass. Tonight, Toronto, you have to prove them wrong."

Some 37 years after forming in New York City, with original lead guitarist Ace Frehley and drummer Peter Criss, the black leather and studs, platform boots and black and white Kabuki makeup were back along with the loud sound, pyrotechnics, dry ice and stunts galore.

Simmons, 60, pulled out his fire-eating routine during Hotter Than Hell and later spewed blood, showing off his famous long tongue, and flew up to the lighting stand to sing lead vocals on I Love It Loud in the best bit of the night.

Stanley also sailed over the heads of the audiences on a pulley and wound up on a smaller rotating stage on the floor for Love Gun.

Their streamlined stage, meanwhile, was dominated by the word KISS in large white lights and rows and rows of small video screens resembling TV sets.

Thayer put on a major guitar solo display, with yet even more fire and explosions, and Singer did the drum solo on a rotating stage but nothing really matched the white confetti, steam and fire, and the three mini stages that elevated Simmons, Stanley and Thayer, during the set-ending Rock And Roll All Nite.

Still, the encore songs, Shout It Out Loud, Lick It Up and Detroit Rock City, came awfully close.



King Of The Night Time World / Deuce / Got To Choose / Modern Day Delilah / Hotter Than Hell / I Stole Your Love / Címon And Love Me / Parasite / She / Watchin' You / 100,000 Years / I Love It Loud / Black Diamond / Rock And Roll All Nite


Shout It Out Loud / Lick It Up / Let Me Go, Rock And Roll / Cold Gin / Love Gun / Detroit Rock City