Buenos Aires Freak Show
(The Godfatherecords G.R. 828/829)
River Plate Stadium, Buenos Aires, Argentina November 7, 2012
Disc 1 (74:30) Radio Promo, Detroit Rock City, Shout It Out Loud, Hell Or Hallelujah, Wall Of Sound, Hotter Than Hell, All For The Love Of Rock & Roll, I Love It Loud, Outta This World, Spacecat Jam, War Machine, Long Way Down, Bass Solo Gene Simmons, God Of Thunder, Psycho Circus, Calling Dr. Love, Love Gun
Disc 2 (78:08) Black Diamond, Lick It Up, I Was Made For Loving You, Rock And Roll All Nite. Bonus Material Interview Vorterix Studios, Buenos Aires, Argentina November 5, 2012; Interview Parts 1-7, Right Here, Right Now
KISS began the tour to support their 20th studio record, Monster, proper on November 7, 2012. They did do a co headline tour on America in the summer of 2012 but only the new single, Hell Or Hallelujah, was performed during these concerts, leaving fans who want to hear the new material live high and dry. After a second and very successful KISS Kruise II the band undertook a tour of South America and were playing a full headline set and the inclusion of many new songs along with a nice mix of the Klassics. South America has become a sort of hot bed for rock bands, the passionate people of the country love their hard rock and metal and some of the biggest bands in the genre play to capacity crowds such as the ones found on this recording.
The recording found on this new set from Godfather is perfect stereo soundboard that was taken from a HD webcast and features the complete concert, there where some cuts in the recording and an alternate audience recording has been used to fill in the gaps, the edits are all very smooth and did not detract from my listening experience. The disc starts off with a radio add for the concert, even though I cannot understand what the hell it says it is a nice addition to this set. There is a deep drone intro that leads to the “You Want The Best…” intro and the band descend to the stage while playing the opening song Detroit Rock City. The elevator style platform is typical KISS, elaborate and an incredible dramatic way to open the concert. The band is in superb form and sound well rehearsed and very tight. The audience is together with the band from the few notes played and provide some vocal support during the twin lead section of the song. The sound has a nice mix and the atmosphere is perfectly captured. The crowd erupts with some vocal “oohhh” as soon as they here the opening of Shout It Out Loud, I read that Gene was suffering from flue like symptoms during this concert, one could not tell and the trading of verses with Paul is very strong. KISS are all about harmonies and Eric Singer and Tommy Thayer fit the bill well, fully immersed in their rolls within the band.
Paul greats the audience and talks to them in Spanish, something that garners great cheers from the huge audience, ever the consummate front man he instantly endears himself to them. Paul introduces the first single for the audience, with a little help from the audience and storm through Hell Or Hallelujah from Monster, the song is typical Paul Stanley, great riff and a big chorus. The thing for me that makes the monster record better than its predecessor is that the way Tommy Thayer puts his rightful stamp of the bands sound, we hear this on Wall Of Sound as it has a great fat riff and nice chorus, the there is the first gap during this some at the 15 to 20 second mark that the alternate recording is used.
Paul introduces an old song, the crowd take over and start chanting “Gene…Gene” before the band leads into a dusted off classic in the form of Hotter Than Hell, a small gap at the 2:10 to 2:15 mark is again filled with the audience source. Paul tells the crowd that Eric is going to sing a song, All For The Love Of Rock & Roll is classic KISS and sounds like it could have been on the first record. Eric Singer does a great job on the vocals and sounds a lot like Peter Criss but with out the roughness of his singing., there is another gap at the 2:24 to 2:38 mark.The audiences energy is infectious and it translates to the band, Gene keeps his energy for the music as Paul introduces a Simmons classic in the form of I Love It Loud. His vocals sound a little strained and he leaves the majority of the choruses to the band, that is no problems and they nail it with a little help from the audience. Tommy gets his chance on the lead vocal duties as the band play his song from the new record, Outta This World, but before he gets his spot Paul announces it is his birthday and leads the crowd in singing Happy Birthday to him ! He pays homage to the spaceman persona lyrically, musically this is all him as the song has a powerful riff and also features some nice fat bass playing compliments of Gene and is certainly one of the new records stronger songs to be played on this night, there is a small gap at the 2:05 to 2:08 mark. The new guys get a chance to jam on what is referred to as the Spacecat jam, a great way for them to give the old guys a break and to keep away from self indulgent solo spots as the two together gives them a chance to solo but in an entertaining format.
The old guys return to the stage and proceed to play a heavy as hell War Machine, Gene’s bass has a wonderfully fat sound, again a small gap at the 2:20 to 2:24 mark.The last of the new songs is next, Long Way Down and probably my favorite song on the new record. Great descending riff and another brief gap at the 2:20 to 2:25 mark. Gene gets his bass solo and the bells toll as he spits blood sounding very ominous and hew goes full throttle into his ode to demonism God Of Thunder amid the cheers from the audience who chant loudly to his creation. Gene is definitely in low voice but certainly gives it his all and it is always a pleasure to hear this song, Paul throws in a great “Soul” at just the right time. The band are going for the throat now beginning with Psycho Circus that sounds very powerful live, it is good to hear the song as it is certainly a strong live track. After a quick breather Gene is back, this time with a Doctor of Love and the first disc closes with Love Gun. Almost every song has a small gap in it usually somewhere in the two minute time frame, it is certainly tedious listing them all but again non interfere with the end result.
The second disc starts with crowd chants and the opening strains of Black Diamond, the audience sings the opening verse so well Paul has them do it again, Eric Singer does a great job with the vocals and the audience is like the fifth member of the group .Interestingly is at the songs conclusion the switch to what sounds like the acoustic performance done at the stadium earlier in the day for a small audience as they again sing happy birthday to Tommy Thayer. Again we are back to the stadium for the encores starting with a standard Lick It Up and a almost metal sounding riff that is I Was Made For Loving You, Tommy plays the riff incredibly giving the heavy feel to the song, again Paul is the mater showman and gives a typically great vocal. The concert finishes with what else than Rock And Roll All Nite that has Gene handling the vocals sans the chorus but thankfully the other three and the audience fill in the gaps and the whole thing is brought to a close amid a round of Sonic Booms in typical KISS fashion.
The bonus material is made up of an interview done for Vorterix FM radio in Buenos Aries on November 5, 2012 and all four band members are present and all the questions are in Spanish and the bands answers in English. The first part is a discussion about the KISS Kruise and what goes at the event and somehow they work it into Paul getting a new pair of headphones. They somehow move into Paul talking about McCafe and his likes and also the excellent restaurants in Argentina. Other hot topics are how the band travels, Tommy’s upcoming birthday, the state of the band in regards to others who had substance abuse issues was rather interesting. We also find out such interesting pre show rituals like Eric performing a dance in his underwear !
They also speak at length about the importance of the KISS fans and how much they are a part of the band, you can tell they really mean it, although they also charge a nice price. The also talk about charity and their wiliness to help in such things, all in all a very nice interview and something that earns its space on this set.
The last bonus is Right Here, Right Now which is a the itunes only download song from the Monster release, although it is nice to have on a silver set, most fans already have downloaded the song and keeping with the copyright laws should be the only place to get this material.
The packaging is the typical tri gatefold sleeve beautifully adorned with live shots of the band from the concert itself with Monster graphics. The set also includes a bonus mini poster that has one side the official concert poster and the other side an incredible shot of the band on the platform descending to the stage as well as live shots and pictures of the concert ticket and guitar pick. Another excellent release in a long line of must own KISS titles from the folks at Godfather. 2012 has been a great year for KISS fans and one can only imagine what is in store for 2012.If you liked this review, buy me a cup of joe. (Suggested: $3 a shot or $7.5 for a double)