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KISS THIS!!!!!!!!!!!!

Discussion in 'Recording' started by studio33, Mar 19, 2008.

  1. studio33

    studio33 Active Member

    Check this out. I love stories like this, thought I would share. This is not a slam on Kiss. I just liked the story and it came from their engineer so what the heck, take it for what it is!
    I saw Eddie Kramer{producer/engineer ala Beatles, Zep, Kiss, Hendricks, Frampton...} last night in a seminar it was great. He said this in the seminar. - Paul Wise

    "So I had a demo tape from a band named Boston on my desk and I was thinking about working them but I got an offer to work with this band Kiss on a "live" album. They had alot of fans. I though about it for awhile seemed like a good challenge so I called up Tommy Schultz {Boston}and said "the record sounds great Tommy I cant add anything else to it. Just release it like it is." And I went to work with Kiss. Now KISS! Hands stretched out. "Talk about a band that cant play their instruments" {the hole seminar laughs hard} . "The hole thing was overdubs accept maybe the drums" {dead silence, then more hard laughs}.

    Moral - HMM What do You think Ladies and Gents????????
  2. audiokid

    audiokid Staff

    Thanks for sharing that. I heard long ago that Kiss stacked empty bins ceiling high for looks. They were all about drama. Everyone thought they were better just because of how many cabinets were on stage lol. Its all about making a buzz and working with what people are noticing about you.

    I love to hear success stories... My hats off to anyone that makes it.
    It takes talent somewhere in any chain to sell. "Zen of Hype"
    An artists gift is to watch the world and report their interpretation back to their audience. That applies to music, painting, poetry, comedians etc.

    Boston's first album was amazing. Guitar/ vocal/ lyrical magic
  3. studio33

    studio33 Active Member

    Tom Grew up about 5 miles from where I did. The stories around here about that band are great. Not sure but I think he was a techi with his amps constantly supping them up and building his own.
  4. Kapt.Krunch

    Kapt.Krunch Well-Known Member

    Tom Scholz was an M.I.T. graduate, so yep...he was a techy. Most of those guitars you hear on Boston records (and others, such as Def Leppard), are run through one or more of his inventions, various "Rockman" devices, developed by SR&D, his company.

    An unmistakeable sound, those made. And the mix on that first album was good. I didn't know why, at the time, that it sounded so different. Even the 8-track tapes sounded better! (Yeah, it dates me). I then got a cassette player for the car...with a Pioneer amp, and had a good recorder at home that I ran the album to tape. I remember I could crank that thing up further than anything else. It was smooth, and had enough compression to tame it, but still had some dynamics. I could hear all the instruments clearly, and the vocals didn't blast out or get buried...they were just there where they sounded kinda right. The bass sat right where it slide under the seat of my car. I remember picking up a friend and saying "listen how good this sounds!"

    I think that album might have ushered in the era of that type of mix. At least, it's the first one I noticed. All the power-pop hair bands seemed to kind of go for that type of sound after that, for awhile, anyway. It was definitely the first album I was exposed to that made me sit up and notice production values. Sure, I would always wonder how Zeppelin did that pre-delay in "Whole Lotta Love", or how Joe Walsh got that sound in the "The Bomber", but those were effects I was wondering about. I didn't pay attention to production values...I had no idea they existed! Plug in or stick a mic in front of it...hit "record".

    Yep, brings back memories. "Boston" was the album that caused me to abandon all common sense, and attempt to learn how things are done...not that I am an expert even yet, but I do have a good, solid understanding, though I also realize there's a world of difference between theory and practical application. I'm still working on the practical application.

    The flip side of realizing now how they do all that stuff is that now I don't get such a sense of innocent wonder. I used to get excited at hearing something totally new. Now, it's just "yeah, sounds like he ran it through a DoubleTalk delay set to about 85ms, and then through a GobbledyGook filter unit, there". Was almost more fun being totally clueless. But, maybe that's what makes it fun for people who don't know? So, I'll keep trying until I accidentally conjure up the right recipe that I think will allow me to put my stamp on something.

    Kinda like Tom Scholz did 30+ years ago. :wink:

  5. AudioGaff

    AudioGaff Well-Known Member

    I remember reading a trade mag back in the day before the 2nd Boston album where they talked about mixing the first album. It was in what I think was Scholz's private studio under a bowling alley.

    I was always curious about how he achieved the sound of his guitars and that album in general. In the mag article was a picture where Scholtz was at a mixing console surrounded by external processors in racks left and right and stacked on top of the racks and stacked on the meter bridge. Among that cluttered mass of gear was about 18+ dbx 160 half rack comspressors.

    So began my love and hate relationship with compression and compressors.

    Krammer's opinion of KISS musicianship is not anything new or any special secret. He has been telling that story since the KISS live album was released.
  6. studio33

    studio33 Active Member

    Ya that was the first time I ever heard it{Kramers story}. I dont even know what to think about that band. I didnt even like them before but then this. Somebody must have had some serious charisma in that band to be that bad and make it so big. I just cant think of one single reason other than hype that they got so far.
  7. BobRogers

    BobRogers Well-Known Member

    I was never a fan of Kiss, but the reasons for their popularity were pretty obvious at the time. There are so many acts of that that type now - theatrical, hyper masculine, pitched straight at 13-year-old boys - that it's easy to forget that there were very few when Kiss first started. They were definitely a theater-first band. I doubt anyone at their concerts noticed the music except as a source of physical pain in their ears. Breath enough fire and no one cares if you can play.
  8. studio33

    studio33 Active Member

    Just like the WWF. Interesting that you say that there are alot more bands like that now. Sign of the times I guess.
  9. bent

    bent No Bad Vibes! Well-Known Member

    I've always thought that Alice Cooper was better at the theatrics, and had better songs and musicians, as both a band and solo artist, than Kiss.

    I've never been much of a Kiss fan, though a few of their songs have grown on me over the years.
  10. Space

    Space Well-Known Member

    The Destroyer album comes to mind as the only listenable album. Up to that point who could actually listen to a Knights InSlaved to Satan album. Kinda like Peter Frampton. Framptons Camel, wtf was that? But spin that Live and that bald headed insurance pawn broke sales records for decades.
  11. bent

    bent No Bad Vibes! Well-Known Member

    I thought the old KISS acronym wive's tale was that it stood for Knights In Satan's Service...?

    Along with WASP: We Are Sexual Perverts...
  12. Space

    Space Well-Known Member

    all I could remember for a fact was that it couldn't possible have stood for Keep It Simple Stupid.
  13. bent

    bent No Bad Vibes! Well-Known Member

    Even though they wrote some of the simplest songs in rock (next to the Ramones, of course)?

    Maybe you're not too far off the mark with that one...
  14. Codemonkey

    Codemonkey Well-Known Member

    Kiss is good if you have someone attractive as an object for your verb.
    Not that I consider women objects but grammatically the woman becomes the object of the sentence. Or is the woman the subject?

    Can't say I'm a big fan of Kiss though. What do you class it as, glam rock? Punk?

    There's certainly plenty of bands these days are showy, not in it to play good music. Scissor sisters comes to mind. Everyone loves a high pitched effeminate guy in pink clothes singing about, well who cares what he sings, he's adorable, look!

    Whatever happened to MUSIC?
    Good solid has-a-beat, has dynamics, has a purpose-other-than-money MUSIC?
    Like some Christian songs.

    (No, music is not an acronym but kudos to anyone who invents a good one).
  15. bent

    bent No Bad Vibes! Well-Known Member

    Going by current trends, maybe:

    More Unlistenable Sh*t In Coming

  16. tcprang

    tcprang Guest

    I was always a huge KISS fan. I feel like they have some pretty cool songs once you get past all of their theatrics.

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