August 13, 2010
KISS had been thinking about the end of the line.

Singer Paul Stanley wondered publicly about whether there would ever be new KISS music. He and Gene Simmons weren't sure how many tours they had left.

Recently, however, lots of things fell into place. Last year, the band released "Sonic Boom," making its debut at No. 2, the band's top chart position ever. Now, in the midst of the band's "Hottest Show on Earth" tour, Stanley said the band is looking to give rock 'n' roll to a new generation.

Question: What made you focus on kids this tour, offering four free tickets for kids in some cities for every single ticket sold?

Answer: KISS is naturally fascinating to young kids. ... With those tickets, we were just trying to make it a little bit more possible economically for people to come out to see us. Times are tough now. Our shows have always been more like a tribal gathering than a concert where fans are more age-specific. Our shows are more like a gathering of a secret society on a massive scale.

Q: Do you feel the need to top yourselves with each tour?

A: Topping yourself can be done in all sorts of different ways. ... The way we look at it, any band with money can do a KISS show. We have to do something special. We have to raise the bar a little.

Q: On the current tour, you're playing riffs from "Whole Lotta Love" before "Black Diamond" and "Won't Get Fooled Again" before "Shout It Out Loud." Are you trying to introduce your younger fans to the classics?

A: Well, I didn't invent the wheel. There are other great songs out there, other great bands and music. ... I don't need to introduce anyone to the classics. I'm always floored that the generation starting with 13 and up seem more aware of Led Zeppelin, Jimi Hendrix and Cream than any others. For us to be considered with them is the ultimate compliment to me.

Q: Does playing outside make the shows wilder?

A: There's a party no matter where we are. ... The great thing people know about KISS is that they always get their money's worth."