Kiss: Behind The Mask (Fall 2003) For those who yearn to rock & roll all night and wallow in Gene Simmons trivia every day comes this Frankenstein monster of a book:… Biography Warner Books
Review

Kiss: Behind The Mask (Fall 2003)

EW's GRADE
B

Details Writers: David Leaf, Ken Sharp; Genre: Biography; Publisher: Warner Books

For those who yearn to rock & roll all night and wallow in Gene Simmons trivia every day comes this Frankenstein monster of a book: a serviceable, previously unpublished 1979 bio wedded to a new oral history of the band. At this point, only diehards will want an in-depth chronicle of, say, the ''Empire State Building Photo Shoot.'' Yet this band-approved tome can be shockingly blunt, redeemed by Kiss' cutting assessments of each other's solo albums and contributions (Ace Frehley: ''Gene doesn't know the difference between a good and a bad song''); record-exec admissions of employing substitute musicians in the studio and using payola to create hits; and the tale of producer Bob Ezrin actually using a blackboard to teach them about time signatures during the making of ''Destroyer.'' And who knew ''Strutter'' was inspired by ''Just Like a Woman''?

Originally posted Oct 24, 2003 Published in issue #734 Oct 24, 2003 Order article reprints