Nuits Parisiennes (Godfather Records G.R.662)
The Olympia, Paris, France – May 22, 1976
(74:03) Intro, Deuce, Strutter, Flaming Youth, Hotter Than Hell, Firehouse, She, Ace Frehley Solo, Nothing To Lose, Shout It Out Loud, Gene Simmons Solo, 100,000 Years, Peter Criss Solo, Black Diamond, Detroit Rock City, Rock N Roll All Nite, Let Me Go, Rock And Roll (Lund May 30, 1976) Detroit Rock City (Demo recorded September 1975)
Godfathers third Kiss release of 2011 is the highly anticipated complete show from Paris in 1976. The show was originally released on vinyl as Stoned In Paris on Parrot Records Promo Roxy 002 and was a two record set and featured two thirds of the concert. Thankfully some one took the time to search out the master tape of the complete show for this exciting new release.
The audience recoding is very good with a strong concentration on the upper frequencies, there is some small amount of distortion that inevitably occurs and there are a few drop outs through out the recording. The mix of instruments and vocals is well balanced, overall a very enjoyable show from start to finish and a couple of nice bonus tracks to boot.
With the success of the ALIVE ! ! record KISS was able to get a big name producer, Bob Ezrin, to work on the record that became the seminal Destroyer and the results were unleashed on the world in March 1976. KISS was actually on tour in the US to support ALIVE ! when Destroyer was released and upon its completion embarked on what is referred to as “The First European Tour”, a 17 date jaunt from which this recording came (it should be noted the band used the stage set up and costumes from the ALIVE ! tour).
The recording starts with some instrument tuning that leads into “All Right Paris You Wanted The Best…” intro and the band hits the stage with their most effective opening salvo of Deuce and Strutter, Ace is playing well, his solos are energetic and set the pace. “This is from our new album Destroyer…..its called Flaming Youth” , this rarely played gem is an early highlight of the set. Very close to the record the song is great live and unfortunately would be dropped after this tour so it is nice to have such a well recording version to enjoy.
Another two songs that are made for each other follow, as they do on ALIVE !, Hotter Than Hell starts it off and gets the crowd clapping as it segues into Firehouse. I think these songs work so well because KISS was a true working band back then and their use of harmonies is very effective, Gene and Paul’s vocals work very well together and they just hit it.
The crowd gives a big cheer at its conclusion giving the band their approval, the crowd is very respectful and after a little cheering the quiet down, its obvious all eyes are on the strange looking men from America. For me there are a couple KISS songs with riffs that have huge balls to them, She is one of those songs. Built for the concert stage again the crowd it into it and clap as Gene play his bass in the center section before Ace plays the solo, and what a solo it twists like a snake and leads to the songs heaviness.
The song gives way to a blistering Ace solo, after ripping into some fast paced notes he hits his echo and goes on a space trip that has the audience on its feet shouting and clapping. More cowbell please as the band goes right into a fast paced Nothing To Lose, there is little fan fare between songs, the band obviously preferred to let the music do the talking, it should be noted as I have done in past interviews Peter Criss is in top form and his drum fills are perfect. Another new song is next and arrives to someone blowing a whistle, Shout It Out Loud again is close to the record and it sounds as if the band is still getting used to playing it live.
The audience is really getting into the show and becomes more vocal as Gene gets into his bass solo and blood spitting that leads into another favorite 100,000 Years. Ace play such an important role in this song, its his soloing and Peter’s drum fills that make this song. Peter gets his solo spot and hit takes advantage of it, he is playing the hell out of his kit and his snare is almost destroyed at is conclusion with the crowd shouting a cheering him on. The opening stains of Black Diamond garners cheers from the audience, they clap in time with the song and cheer as the bombs go off at its conclusion.
They have no choice but to chant at its conclusion to get the band back on stage, they are successful and the reward is Detroit Rock City. The version here sounds almost stripped down and not as polished as it would become, this is why we buy these bootlegs, the crowd is very into it and clap through out the song. The show comes to an end with the signature Rock N Roll All Nite, the crowd again chanting at its conclusion as the recording keeps going as the house lights come up and music is played over the PA.
The first of the bonus tracks is from six shows later, Paul tries to introduce Ace to sing a song but he does not want to and the launch into the boogie rock of Let Me Go, Rock And Roll. Ace is playing fine and must just be shy, the recording is distant but clear and is great to hear.
The second bonus track is a demo version of Detroit Rock City, the main riff is still there but instead of Ace and Paul repeating it Ace solos over it, the lyrics are different but the chorus is intact. For me this is 2 minutes and 20 seconds of pure joy, I am not a huge fan of demos but this one is really cool.
The packaging is typical Godfather, tri gatefold sleeve beautifully adorned with pictures from the era, the band in all their glory. I think kads hit the nail on the head that this is why we became KISS fans, for this fan he speaks the truth. One not to be missed, give your bass not a little tweak, turn the volume up and enjoy.