Kiss Essentials

Kiss Essentials

A bubblegum pop act trapped inside wild hard rockers, Kiss excel at hook-heavy tunes every bit as over the top as their comic book makeup. The group's '70s incarnation—Paul, Gene, Ace and Peter—had a bottomless well of shout-along choruses and wickedly clever riffs, unleashing thumping arena anthems (“Rock and Roll All Nite”), gooey ballads (“Beth”) and funereal theater (“God of Thunder”). In the '80s and beyond, they moved into muscular pop metal and churned out X-rated fist-pumpers like “Lick It Up” and the mountainous “I Love It Loud”—one of the heaviest jams in their catalogue.

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