Why The OG KISS Lineup Won’t Reform

6 March 2023 | 8:41 am | Mary Varvaris

"We had too much pride in this line-up, which is KISS and has been KISS for 20 years."

(Pic by Andrew Briscoe)


KISS recently appeared on The Howard Stern Show and played three classic hits: Shout It Out Loud, Detroit Rock City and Rock And Roll All Nite. They didn’t just play music, though; Stern also interviewed the band, who didn’t hold back on their thoughts about certain matters. Check out the footage below.

Addressing the band’s decision to not perform at the Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame upon their induction in 2014, vocalist Paul Stanley said, “At this point, that would be demeaning to the band, and also would give some people confusion. 'Cause if you saw people onstage who looked like KISS but sounded like that, maybe we should be called Piss.” That certainly puts the nail in the coffin of an original KISS reunion.

The singer called the Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame’s insistence that the line-up inducted would be Stanley, bassist Gene Simmons and the group’s other two original members, lead guitarist Ace Frehley and drummer Peter Criss, “demanding, quite honestly.” 

Stanley added that Tommy Thayer (guitar) and Eric Singer (drums) are no newcomers, as they’ve been in the band for 20 years and remarked on the “heights” KISS have reached while those two have been in the group.

Stanley believed that the Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame “purposely” kept KISS from being inducted for years and said, “The hypocrisy is that we’re not a band they like. They purposely kept us out for 15 years. And other bands that they embrace, they induct people’s mums and songwriters and all these people.

“And with us, it truly was unfair. Because we had too much pride in this line-up, which is KISS and has been KISS for 20 years, it’s not newcomers. This is the band that has carried the flag and taken it, really, to another level. This is the band I always dreamed it would be.”

In August, KISS landed in Australia, marking their 20th visit down under on their final tour ever. The Music reviewer Micheal Prebeg noted, “Their performance is truly unlike anything else. It’s an over-the-top spectacle full of jaw-dropping effects and adrenaline-pumping rock’n’roll moments to keep the audience captivated the entire time.” Read the rest of the review here.