REVIEW: KISS – The Ritz On Fire (2013)
KISS – The Ritz On Fire (2013 Gold Fish, recorded 1988)
This is hard to get. I got mine via eBay; Scott the Scot found his locally. Fandom went into panic mode when all Amazon pre-orders were abruptly cancelled. We all figured that Kiss’ lawyers stopped its release. It had still made it to the manufacturing stage, and enough copies have surfaced on the market that it is already a collectible that can be afforded.
If you love that poorly documented period that is late 80’s Kiss, you will love The Ritz On Fire. August 12, 1988, The Ritz, New York City. A radio broadcast, from the Crazy Nights tour. It’s not live album quality, but it’s a radio broadcast and therefore listenable. There are issues on some songs, such as “Love Gun” where Paul’s voice is too low in the mix while the drums remain more than audible. It’s such a joy to have a live recording with Eric Carr and Bruce Kulick that fans will be happy to overlook such defects.
It’s also cool to revisit some under-appreciated Kiss klassics: “Fits Like A Glove” from Lick It Up, “War Machine” from Creatures, and “Tears Are Falling” from Asylum are among the songs that are hard to find in live form. It’s also a pleasure to hear this lineup tackle Destroyer‘s “Shout It Out Loud” which was rarely performed back then.
MVP: No disprect to the late Eric Carr intended, but Bruce Kulick blows me away with his dexterity and diversity. His solos are highlights of every single song. He doesn’t emulate his predecessors, nor does he play inappropriately for the songs. Also worth mentioning is Paul Stanley. Once they get the vocal levels right, it’s a pleasure to hear Paul Stanley at his vocal peak singing live. The songs aren’t all downtuned like they are today, and some songs like “Crazy Crazy Nights” are really up there.
Eric Carr…he had his own style, and after hearing Eric Singer ably fill his shoes for so long now, we can be reminded how Eric Carr played them. He had his own signature drum rolls, and of course that unmistakable raspy voice on “Black Diamond”. Nobody was confusing Eric Carr with Peter Criss, on the drums or on the microphone; Eric’s rasp was completely different from Peter’s. He was almost a cross between Criss and Simmons.
Best of all, this is really live. We saw Kiss “singing” to backing tapes at Dodger Stadium on Saturday January 25 on national television. Meanwhile, Paul wasn’t actually singing anything at all. Not so on The Ritz On Fire. Yes, keyboardist Gary Corbett was backstage sweetening the sound and adding backing vocals, but they were live. The Ritz On Fire is all the stronger for it.
More KISS at mikeladano.com:
Record Store Tales Part 3: My First KISS + Part 8: You Wanted the Best +
Part 77: Psycho-Circus + Part 151: 24kt KISS…cheap at twice the price +
Part 152: Carnival of Lost Souls + Part 173: Gene Simmons’ Asylum Demos +
Part 179: Phantom of the Opera + Part 241: Halloween, KISS style!
Share this rock:
Archives of Rock
- REVIEW: Deadline – Tangible Vibe (1996)
- REVIEW: The Sheepdogs – Learn and Burn (2011 bonus tracks)
- REVIEW: Deadline – So This is Limbo (1994)
- GUEST SHOT! Part 319: The Musical Crimes of LeBrain (by Mrs. LeBrain)
- REVIEW: Jon Bon Jovi – Blaze of Glory (1990)
- REVIEW: Trailer Park Boys – Season 8 (Netflix)
- VIDEOS: The Cottage in the Woods 3
- REVIEW: Deadline – Deadline (1992)
- VIDEO: LeBrain’s ALS Ice Bucket Challenge
- Part 318: The Last of the Emails
- REVIEW: Queen + Paul Rodgers – Live in Ukraine (2009 CD/DVD)
- GUEST SHOT! Part 317.5: A Message From Statham
- REVIEW: My Wicked Twin – Decibel Music (2008)
- Gallery: Other Stuff I Collect That Isn’t Music
Last Comments of Rock
|keepsmealive on REVIEW: The Sheepdogs –…|
|Sarca on REVIEW: The Sheepdogs –…|
|Sarca on REVIEW: Deadline – Tangi…|
|keepsmealive on REVIEW: Deadline – So Th…|
|keepsmealive on REVIEW: The Sheepdogs –…|
- REVIEW: Deadline - Tangible Vibe (1996) wp.me/p2hc2t-89t via @mikeladano 17 hours ago
- RT @davefmrocks: .@MarkoFoxLive: Today in ROCK! September 13, 1984- KISS "Animalize" is released. Read the @MikeLadano review here- http://… 1 day ago
- REVIEW: The Sheepdogs - Learn and Burn (2011 bonus tracks) wp.me/p2hc2t-7Pp via @mikeladano 1 day ago
- REVIEW: Deadline - So This is Limbo (1994) wp.me/p2hc2t-87g via @mikeladano 2 days ago
- #revenge GUEST SHOT! Part 319: The Musical Crimes of LeBrain (by Mrs. LeBrain) wp.me/p2hc2t-89T via @mikeladano 3 days ago