So I was browsing my friendly neighborhood KISS news website, http://www.kissassylum.com, when I saw something that shocked me. I sat there with my jaw on the floor and my coffee dribbling down my lip like a new born baby who could not swallow the milk it had sucked into it’s mouth. Someone was going to attempt to fulfill the original vision of the KISS album “Music From The Elder.” This project is very raw. independant and is very interesting, but how about some quick back ground info.
Back in 1982, Gene and Paul decided that they wanted to release a concept album. It would be the start of a huge project that would culminate into a film. The idea was set in medieval times and would be about a young boy facing situations that would see him mature into a man. The Elder was a group of four elemental beings that represented Water, Earth, Fire and Air.
The album was a huge commercial failure as fans, the band’s management and even Ace and Eric hated the idea of the album. It is reported that Ace was so upset with the finished album that after he heard it for the first time, he threw it against the wall smashing it in the process. I actually do not hate the album as many KISS fans do. See, I realized a long time ago that when you look at the KISS album catalogue that they would evolve their sound to whatever was happening in the music scene at the time.
They have hard rock, disco themed, concept themed, pop rock, heavy metal and even an alternative themed album in their history. KISS fans are a fickle group and even though we buy the albums and listen to the albums, we want KISS with a heavy metal/hard rock edge with the occasional power ballad throw in. I do like hearing them evolve and expand their sound though and there is nothing wrong with that.
Yeah….I should also state that part of the reason that the fans were also anti-Elder was the costume choice that the band decided on for the theme. They cut their hair, stored their platform boots and trimmed their bulk of their costumes down to a more modest, but I will admit ridiculous, level. Let that image sink in their a little bit. The band was in a panic to redefine itself after suffering from their disco themed era and this did the opposite of helping them.
There was a KISS comic book put out that did use the concept of the elder and did have each member as an in comic avatar with Eric Carr’s Fox character being an actual fox-human creature. I used to have it but for the life of me have no idea where it is right now. I think that the comic book is one of the few formats that it would transition to smoothly.
I will support the film maker and really hope that KISS, especially Gene, will reach out to support him as well instead of shutting down production. KISS has a history to try to force themselves to forget their failures, KISS Meets The Phantom Of The Park movie is another on this level, but should embrace the idea that there is someone out there who is wanting to see their original vision come to life.
I will be waiting…………