Heart-Breaker From Hell (Tarantura TCDKIS78-1-1,2)
Budokan Dai Hall Tokyo, Japan Tuesday March 28, 1978
Disc 1 (44:52) Heartbreaker / Led Zeppelin, Monitor Check, Introduction, I Stole Your Love, King Of The Night Time World, Ladies Room, Firehouse, Love Gun, Let Me Go, Rock And Roll, Makin’ Love, Christine Sixteen, Shock Me, Guitar Solo, I Want You
Disc 2 (41:55) Calling Dr Love, Shout It Out Loud, Bass Solo, God Of Thunder, Drum Solo, God Of Thunder, Rock And Roll All Night, Detroit Rock City, Beth, Black Diamond
Tarantura follows up the excellent Kabuki Beasts title with a great new Mr. Peach recording from the Alive ! II tour, recorded on the opening date of a five night stand at the Budokan in Tokyo. The recording is very good and recorded very close to the stage directly in front of Ace Frehley’s amp. His guitar is slightly higher than the other instruments but just by a little, you can still hear the bass, drums, and vocals clearly but Paul’s guitar is hard to decipher in the mix hence my grading of very good and not excellent. The concert itself a fabulously played document in front of a devoted audience who treat the band and Gods and is a joy to listen to, the classic line up at their peak.
The recording picks up as the strains of Led Zeppelin’s Heartbreaker is being played over the PA system hence the title, Heartbreaker from Hell. After a quick monitor check the opening of “All right Tokyo, you wanted the best and you got the best….the hottest band in the world…KISS !”.
The band launches into I Stole Your Love to a multitude of explosions, while its no Detroit rock City it is a great choice for an opener, the crowd is very into it already, as Ace’s solo comes up the cheer wildly(interesting tidbit, Paul Stanley says he had inspiration on the songs riff from Deep Purple’s Burn, you can hear the similarities). The band goes right into King Of The Night Time World without skipping a beat and again explosions abound creating a completely insane atmosphere.
Listening to the recording on a boom box then through head phones is a completely different experience, through the head phones you can feel the sold out crowd behind you and the fact that Ace’s guitar is in the foreground it has a very raw feel to it. The energy doesn’t stop as the plow through Ladies Room, Firehouse and the solo from Love Gun has the crowd cheering wildly and Ace plays it brilliantly.
Paul leads a chant of “OH YEAH !” before going into Christine Sixteen and the crowd is going crazy, clapping and cheering throughout a definite crowd favorite. Ace Frehley gets his solo spot Shock Me follows and the crowd is frenzied and totally follow the bands every move giving the recording a very lively atmosphere, Peter Criss is having a great night, his fills are on time and very inspired. Ace’s solo goes through the usual themes, you can hear the audience respond to the smoking guitar and other effects he utilizes for his “show”.
Dr Love starts the second disc and you can here the crowd singing the Dr Love harmony parts along with Paul, almost like there’s an echo and they follow suit during Shout It Out Loud and must be considered the fifth member of the band on this evening. A heavy God Of Thunder follows after the blood spitting bass solo, Peter Criss again hits the marching drum patterns dead on adding to the songs eerie quality. Criss plays a energetic three and half minute solo to the cheers of the crowd, for them there is no letting up now.
You can here some vocal effects on Gene’s vocals as he sings the “I am the Lord of the wasteland” lyrics, by now the blood from Gene’s lips is in the water and the sharks are circling. Rock And Roll All Night starts the attack and the explosion filled intro to Detroit Rock City lays the place to waste, at its conclusion the crowd goes ape shit for two solid minutes shouting “WE WANT KISS” clapping and beating their chairs, turn it up loud to get the full effect and their reward ? Beth. You can tell Peter is overwhelmed by the crowd, I don’t care what anybody says, Beth is a cool song. Another solid minute and half is cheering comes before the ending of the signature Black Diamond and fitting ending to this fantastic concert.
The packaging is a great full color glossy (sound like a sales man don’t I) with a great picture of a bloodied Gene Simmons that totally fits the From Hell part. The back has a picture of Paul while the center has the obligatory ticket stub and master cassette pictures and some live shots I am guessing were taken at the concert.The is also a OBI strip making this release very classy indeed. The cds are pictured with Paul on disc 1 and Gene on disc 2, Tarantura has done a great job with this title and every KISS fan should get a copy while they can.