Kiss Alive! Birmingham Odeon May 1976

Kiss Alive! Birmingham Odeon May 1976
kissbrum We’d read all about the weird world of KISS and their outrageous US stage show in the music papers, so when we saw that they were touring the UK we just had to go along. This was their first UK visit and it was a pretty short one too, consisting of four shows in three theatre venues (one night at Manchester Free Trade Hall, one at Birmingham Odeon and two at Hammersmith Odeon). I drove down with a group of mates to the Birmingham Odeon show. Support came from my old favourites Stray, with Del Bromham wearing his silver mirror suit. Stray were touring to promote the Houdini album. I remember not recognising many of the songs, as most were from their new album, although I think they finished with the old stage favourite All In Your Mind. kiss76prog Kiss were touring off the back of their Alive! double album and their set was built around that. They came over as a hot rock n roll band, complete with the crazy over the top make-up. I remember us staring in awe of their massive stacks, although I suspect the show we saw wasn’t anywhere near the scale of their massive US stage show, because of the limitations of the venue. And they had rocket firing guitars, Gene Simmons spitting blood and breathing fire; Ace Frehley’s guitar bursting into flames; Peter Criss’ elevating drum riser; Paul Stanley’s heavy posing, and various other pyrotechnics throughout the show. We were all very impressed, although we also thought that they didn’t quite live up to the hype we had read. The programme declares: “The KISS experience. KISS is total sensuality. Thundering rock, intense vibration, and soaring freedom. Penetrating energy and exploding emotion stimulate every nerve to unequalled heights”. Pretty impressive stuff, eh? The volume wasn’t LOUD enough and the sound mix wasn’t perfect, but it was great to see this seminal live act at such an important point in their career. kissarmy We ran into an old friend who was studying at Nottingham at the time, and gave him a lift home on our way back, which meant that we final got home in the early hours of the morning, as dawn was breaking. The things you do for rock n roll. Setlist: Deuce; Strutter; Flaming Youth; Hotter Than Hell; Firehouse (Gene spitting fire); She(Ace guitar solo); Nothin’ to Lose; Shout It Out Loud; 100,000 Years (Peter Criss drum solo); Black Diamond. Encore: Detroit Rock City; Rock and Roll All Nite; Let Me Go, Rock ‘N’ Roll. Wish I’d joined the KISS army! 🙂 (see page from programme to right)

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