November 14, 2012
By Jorge Coronel
Translated from Spanish for KISSonline by Jill Cataldo

With the force of a hurricane and the charm of an entire generation, the iconic American rock band KISS passed through Paraguay, razing it.

More than 20,000 souls gathered at the Paraguayan Jockey Club Race Course witnessed a Satanic night of rock on Monday in which the American band KISS, beloved worldwide, offered a rock ritual that could not be missed.

Paul Stanley (vocals and guitar), Gene Simmons (vocals and bass), Tommy Thayer (guitar) and Eric Singer (drums) worship a golden era of rock.

With nearly 40 years of history, 20 albums and more than 100 million albums sold worldwide, KISS' debut in Paraguay was fraught with public expectations, which they lived up to.

There was little wait at 10:00pm, and then they were there. A voiceover was enough to know that the moment was finally coming, under the promise that Paraguay would experience a "true night of rock".

From the album "Destroyer", "Detroit Rock City" opened the night in which the heroes with face makeup and extravagant costumes made their debut at the Jockey Club.

Between the fire and gestures of Gene Simmons - whose tongue almost has its own personality- the stage was set for a famous night of rock.

With Paul Stanley owning the stage, and with the help of special effects- "Shout It Out Loud" resonated strongly with the audience on the third day of the Asunción Rock Festival.

"KISS, KISS, KISS!" responded the fans, as the vocalist took command of the audience, speaking in Spanish. "Asunción: no hablo en español muy bien, pero comprendo tus sentimientos ¡y mi corazón es tuyo!" ("Asunción: I don't speak Spanish very well, but I understand your feelings and my heart is yours!", he said.)

"Asunción: escucha," ("Listen,") he then warned, while the public paid attention to the main screen on the stage.

This time, Simmons took the vocals, while Stanley returned to the stage, legs in constant motion and jumping high. "Calling Dr. Love" would thus have its moment on this night of KISS.

With powerful energy on stage, the musicians had a legendary night for the first time in this country. “Asunción: ¿cómo se sienten esta noche? ¡Esta es la noche del Rock N’ Roll!” ("Asunción: How do you feel tonight?" This is the night of Rock N' Roll!") again challenged Stanley, while he responded to the cry of a fan:"También te quiero, guapacita!" ("I love you too, beautiful!")

The vocalist added his share of show with small a cappella snippets of "Cielito lindo", "Guantanamera" and "Yo soy un hombre sincero."

From their most recent album, "Monster" (2012), came the single, "Hell or Hallelujah ', in the midst of a stage filled with red and green, with Simmons' tongue always visible. Without a doubt, this was a spectacle in which nothing was left to chance.

Between applause and shouts, the musician confessed - somehow - that the Paraguayans were already winning the affection of the band. "We were previously in Buenos Aires, Santiago... but tonight you are number one!", he said.

"“Esperamos mucho tiempo venir; es un honor para nosotros estar con ustedes" ("We've wanted to come here for a long time; It is a honor for us to be with you") he said later, generating a remarkable connection in a physical space that is far from the imposing River Plate Stadium but reveled in the close proximity between the masses and those monsters of rock.

Simmons brought a sword and blew fire, then nailed the sword in the middle of the stage.

"Kiss, Kiss, Kiss!," chanted the fans, again as the band launched into the rhythmic "I Love It Loud".

With the planet Earth visible on the main screen, Tommy Thayer sang of the virtues of space with another song from the new album, "Outta This World", echoing the strength of the 70s rock, with distorted guitars and a great attitude.

Thayer remained on stage as the protagonist of the show, with a guitar solo. The musician also offered a visual spectacle, with an explosive image that resulted in pyrotechnics shooting from his guitar between drum solos.

"Asunción! Canta, Asunción!" (Asunción, sing Asunción!) the band cried. And so it was.

Simmons and Stanley then appeared, seizing the first stage.

The "demon" Simmons, came into his character and captivated everyone with a rhythmic bass solo. With blood falling from his mouth, the musician seduced everyone with his demonic secret weapon.

With much fire and demons on screen, Simmons sang a powerful version of "God of Thunder".

The force did not stop, and the show continued with "Psycho Circus", with a silver KISS logo on screen. Stanley emerged holding a bra and smiling.

"All hands up!" shouted Simmons, but it was not an assault. He requested that the audience accompany him, clapping palms and singing along with "War Machine". Meanwhile, Stanley was again pulled to the stage, and Thayer was also again called to the stage. Everything was permitted for the excesses of Rock N' Roll.

"Asunción, my turn," said Stanley, and he launched into "Love Gun", at first a cappella. After a few seconds, he stopped to look at the magic that he'd produced in his audience; Although it was brief, it was one of the evening's greatest moments of connection with the audience. He was solo on stage, just with the local audience. He then took a Paraguayan flag, which he put on his back.

His companions returned to the stage and joined for a well-lit "Black Diamond". And a complete lack of control followed: more Fireworks, colored lights and the flag of Paraguay, in a corner of the stage. Demonic sounds continued dominating the night, while KISS played on, eternal adolescents.

Stanley and his companions then seemed to bid farewell to the show, retiring from the stage, while the fire returned, always an important part of the attraction.

With the Paraguayan flag in their hands, the rockstars came back to the Jockey stage. “Queremos ‘to take’ una foto ‘with you’” said Stanley in "Spanglish."

Suddenly, a condom flew into the singer's hands, a gesture that the musician observed with grace. Of course, someone also threw him a black bra. “¡Gracias, guapa," ("Thank you, beautiful") he answered.

"Are you having a good time? We want you to sing with us! ", asked Stanley. Then, the strength of pure Rock N' Roll continued with "Lick It Up".

Among more applause and shouts, these powerful musicians took the stage with a bright and highly-acclaimed version of "I Was Made for Lovin' You," the legendary band's multigenerational hit.

With confetti and much - much - pyrotechnics, here and there, the monstrous Kiss fired upon Asuncion with another global hit: the frantic "Rock and Roll All Nite".

“¡Muy bueno!” added Stanley, while he broke his guitar between special effects and explosions.

KISS are kings of their own empire. While the iconic Kiss didn't fly around the Jockey stage as initially planned, their spirit did fly into the audiences' heads. KISS left, writing one of the best chapters in the history of Paraguay shows.

KISS made a pact to rock. The band of Stanley, Simmons, Singer and Thayer is undoubtedly essential to see live. It's not only a sampling of rock and roll songs, nor just attitude, nor just special effects. It is all that, and it's even more. It is KISS.