10 Songs, 32 Minutes

EDITORS’ NOTES

By 1977, Kiss were successful hard rockers and a major marketing force. Their extensive, circus-like stage shows, larger-than-life personae, and fun-loving, cartoon-like tunes further proved their pop instincts were dead on. Love Gun was the group’s sixth studio album; like its predecessor, 1976’s Rock n’ Roll Over, it concentrates on streamlined rock ‘n' roll songs with big riffs aimed at the largest arenas. Kiss tooled themselves for grandeur. If anything, they make it sound easy. The title track, “I Stole Your Love,” and “Tomorrow and Tonight” became immediate live favorites for their crowd-rallying choruses. But elsewhere, the band take a few unusual steps. In an effort to showcase each member, guitarist Ace Frehley delivers the in-character “Shock Me,” while Peter Criss, the group's most limited vocalist, scratches out the goofy but charming “Hooligan.“ “Christine Sixteen” is pure Gene Simmons dirty-old-man shtick, with its creepy mid-song monologue. “Plaster Caster” recounts certain groupies’ preoccupations with rock star genitalia. For a final twist, “Then She Kissed Me” ends things with an unexpected moment of retro Phil Spector–style pop.

EDITORS’ NOTES

By 1977, Kiss were successful hard rockers and a major marketing force. Their extensive, circus-like stage shows, larger-than-life personae, and fun-loving, cartoon-like tunes further proved their pop instincts were dead on. Love Gun was the group’s sixth studio album; like its predecessor, 1976’s Rock n’ Roll Over, it concentrates on streamlined rock ‘n' roll songs with big riffs aimed at the largest arenas. Kiss tooled themselves for grandeur. If anything, they make it sound easy. The title track, “I Stole Your Love,” and “Tomorrow and Tonight” became immediate live favorites for their crowd-rallying choruses. But elsewhere, the band take a few unusual steps. In an effort to showcase each member, guitarist Ace Frehley delivers the in-character “Shock Me,” while Peter Criss, the group's most limited vocalist, scratches out the goofy but charming “Hooligan.“ “Christine Sixteen” is pure Gene Simmons dirty-old-man shtick, with its creepy mid-song monologue. “Plaster Caster” recounts certain groupies’ preoccupations with rock star genitalia. For a final twist, “Then She Kissed Me” ends things with an unexpected moment of retro Phil Spector–style pop.

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