Kiss – Sonic Boom


Artist

Album

Sonic Boom

Label

Universal

Year

2009

Genre

For Fans Of

Motley Crue – Alice Cooper – Wednesday 13

Summary

New York’s famous flamboyant rockers return.

Rating

75 / 100

Love them or loathe them Kiss have managed to maintain a remarkable longevity in a genre better known for its cheesy gimmicks and outlandish attire. For the best part of three decades the New York four piece has certainly pandered to this notion. However, while other bands have long been forgotten due to their vain, superficial and derivative musical style and appearance, Kiss has stuck around – keeping a loyal fan base in the process. 

Studio album number nineteen and first in over ten years, ‘Sonic Boom’ is an interesting case study. The Glam and hard rock genre provides a limited range of diversity insofar as to suggest what could Kiss offer that they had not displayed on the previous eighteen albums? After all, in order to stick in line with the aesthetics of the 70’s/80’s Glam they helped pioneer, you could hardly expect Kiss to deliver an album filled with 10 minute odd-time laden, Between the Buried and Me styled songs.  

Nevertheless, like AC/DC, Kiss has the potential to deliver an album filled with similar riffs and a comparable musical blueprint, and still get away with a solid album. The charm of ‘Sonic Boom’ is that it essentially strips back the bands sound, leaving us with an old school, straightforward rock LP that is consistent and refined. Maybe it shows their age or a change of pace but ‘Sonic Boom’ is effective because it goes against the overstated musical nature Kiss has so commonly been renowned for.  

Songs such as ‘Danger Us’ and ‘I’m an Animal’ have an almost Southern Rock feel to them, with lasting and repetitive guitar lines that combine well with mid-paced drum beats. While other tracks, namely ‘Never Enough’ are precise, trademark rock ‘n’ roll. 

Conclusion

Not too shabby, but certainly not the genre’s most outstanding effort either – just neatly somewhere in between. Kiss may be better known for their make-up and outspoken individual personalities however; they do display an astute level of musical proficiency on ‘Sonic Boom’.

Tracklisting

  1. Modern Day Delilah
  2. Russian Roulette
  3. Never Enough
  4. Yes I Know (Nobody’s Perfect)
  5. Stand
  6. Hot and Cold
  7. All For the Glory
  8. Danger Us
  9. I’m an Animal
  10. When Lighting Strikes
  11. Say Yeah

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