IN ' COUNTRY'
October 12, 2009
Is there a more dedicated fan base than the Kiss Army? The elder statesmen and stateswomen brought along a whole bunch of new recruits to witness the spectacle of what could be the best visual stage show ever, as well as a constant supply of down-home Rock and Roll cooking for the New York audience.

I am positive that the new recruits are just as enthralled with KISS after witnessing them deliver a knock-out punch on the world's greatest stage, and who knows -- they may just get the chance to introduce their kids to a KISS concert for their "KISS ALIVE 50" tour.

I don't know if it is the addition of Tommy Thayer on guitar or Eric Singer on drums, but Paul Stanley and Gene Simmons appear revitalized. They seem to be breathing fresh air again, and you would have thought that it could have been 1979 instead of 2009 because the energy they brought to the table last night makes me wonder if the band is drinking out of some kind of fountain of youth.

When I was 12 years old, KISS was not cool for my parents or their generation. My parents were not taking me to a KISS concert! But last night, I saw that my generation is now bringing their kids to see the hottest band in the world.

Paul said hello to the crowd, blasting into "Let Me Go, Rock and Roll." Eric and Tommy shared the spotlight as their playing was super solid. After the song, Paul told the crowd that he used to drive a cab in New York, and when he was driving people to see Elvis, he was determined to one day play Madison Square Garden with his band. He continued to pay homage to the NY crowd by letting them know that no matter where they might play, New York will always be their home, and "this is 'KISS in KISS Country.'"

I was hoping to hear more than a few songs from "Sonic Boom," but the only one they squeezed in between two classics was the new single, the scorching "Modern Day Delilah." I have to tell you there were a lot of fans who knew all the words to this song already.


When the band launched into "Rock and Roll All Nite..." I'm telling you folks, I don't care how many times you hear it, and how many times they play it - there is something about this song that just does it for everyone. "Machine guns" sprayed confetti throughout the Garden. The screens showed rabid fans singing along, cheering and just plain smiling. The band exited the stage as the crowd was chanting "We Want Kiss! We Want Kiss!"

After about 5 minutes, the band came out together and bowed to the audience. Paul let the crowd know that they will have the "longest encore in the history of music." As they head back to get their instruments, Paul playfully jumped on Gene's back and Gene carried him across the stage.

The night ended with the incomparable "Detroit Rock City," and I know the crowd wanted more but they were definitely satisfied with the passion, dedication and effort put into the show by Paul, Gene, Tommy and Eric. KISS came home last night and proved to everyone why they have lasted for 35 years - and I know that the same audience (as well as future recruits) will be there when they come back for their 40th, 45th and 50th. Thank you, gentlemen, for a rocking evening.