In the era of YouTube, and with the ubiquitous presence of camera phones and inexpensive digital recorders capturing almost every mundane moment of modern life, it’s difficult to imagine a musical genre or group of talented musicians remaining undiscovered.
“This isn’t ‘old-timer’s day,’ ” Paul Stanley says of Kiss in 2012. “If that’s anybody’s idea of what we’re doing, then that’s just morbid and ridiculous.” Indeed, the 60-year-old singer and guitarist has just one word for those who question whether there’s still a fire raging beneath Kiss’ pancake-makeup exterior: Monster. That’s the title of the band’s new and—zounds!—20th studio album, which is Kiss’ hardest-hitting effort since 1992’s Revenge. The collection’s 13 tracks are streamlined and direct, with a vibe that recalls their Seventies-rock heyday and a sound that is solidly modern.