When it comes to popular American rock bands, Kiss ranks among the top and has done for decades. Easily identified by its members' face paint and flamboyant stage outfits, the group’s fame rose to prominence in the mid 1970s on the basis of their elaborate live performances. Kiss was named 10th, by VH1, on their list of the '100 Greatest Artists of Hard Rock and 9th on 'The Greatest Metal Bands' list by MTV.
Kiss is a New York City-based rock and roll band led by co-founders Gene Simmons and Paul Stanley. The band was formed in 1973. Originally in 1971, both Simmons and Stanley were involved in the band Wicked Lester. The band recorded one album, which was shelved by Epic Records, and played a handful of live shows. Simmons and Stanley felt that a new musical direction was needed and therefore left the group in 1972.
The band managed to secure a record deal and also gained a reputation for their live performances. In 1974, the band released two albums titled Kiss and Hotter Than Hell. Both barely charted in America and soon fell off the top 100.
Released in late 1975 and titled just like Slade’s album, Alive! achieved Gold status and led to Kiss's first top 40 single, a live version of "Rock and Roll All Nite." Apparently in recent years the band admitted that additional audience noise had been added to the album, not to deceive fans, but to add more "excitement and realism" to the show whereas Slade recorded their Alive! album and kept it almost exactly as it originally sounded to add to the atmosphere. It is only too obvious that Kiss were heavily influenced by Slade Alive!
The band released another studio album titled Dynasty by 1979 which continued their success. The band had not toured since early 1978 and had not released an album since 1977. Billed as "The Return of Kiss," the Dynasty Tour saw a marked decline in attendance.
By the end of the Dynasty tour in December 1979, tensions between drummer Criss and the rest of the band were high. His drumming skills had noticeably eroded, and he even intentionally slowed down or stopped playing altogether during some concerts. He was no longer an official member of Kiss half a year later. In 1980, the band released a new studio album titled Unmasked which although Criss appeared on the cover, all drumming was recorded by session Anton Fig. The album saw a decline in commercial success and only peaked at #35, their worst charting since 1974.
In 1981, new drummer Eric Carr joined the band and a new studio album was set to be created. Early press reports indicated that the new album would be a return to the hard rock style that had originally brought the band success. What was released instead was 1981's Music from "The Elder", a concept album featuring medieval horns, strings, harps, and synthesizers. The album was to be a soundtrack to a film which was never made, making the album hard to understand. Negative response followed and the album only peaked at #75 on the Billboard chart.
By late 1983, the band had found a new guitarist Vinnie Vincent and released Lick It Up. The album was a big success, peaking at a healthy #24. Afterwards, the band released 1984’s Animalize, 1985’s Asylum and 1987’s Crazy Nights which all peaked in the top 20 of the album charts. The band has maintained commercial success to this very day.
Whilst there were many connections and similarities between Slade and Kiss, nothing proved how important Slade were than when members from the band praised Slade as their greatest influence.
"Slade was certainly our greatest influence; not only in the crafting of rock songs but also as performers. Before Slade, no one really knew shit about how to make an audience riot. We really got off on that. There would probably never have been us without them and when I look at the greatest hits section by Sweet, or Slade, or any other of my favourite bands, there are TONS of compilation records."
It is also said that the band modelled their first hit Rock and Roll All Nite after being inspired by the Slade song Cum on Feel the Noize. Rock and Roll All Nite is now said to be the Rock And Roll National Anthem, at least for America.
"The one we kept returning to was Slade.... we liked the way they connected with the crowd, and the way they wrote anthems.... we wanted that same energy, that same irresistible simplicity. but we wanted it American-style".
Gene Simmons: Kiss and Make-Up
"When Slade were supporting Kiss in the States, Noddy approached Gene Simmons and Gene asked Noddy for his autograph!" I'd love to substantiate this claim?