The legendary rock band will shortly embark on the Australian leg of their End of the Road world tour, marketed as their “final tour ever”.
Currently, the tour has no finalized end date, with Simmons telling YouTube channel Chaoszine (opens in new tab) back in June that the band had decided to add 100 more dates to the tour.
So while the four-piece appear serious about retiring this time around, it seems they’re not intent on hanging up their silver-studded boots just yet. But what will become of the band’s legacy when they do ultimately call it quits?
In a new interview with YouTuber/podcaster Dean Delray's Let There Be Talk show, Simmons says it’s possible the band could continue, describing its future state as somewhat of a rock ‘n’ roll franchise.
“The important thing is when it’s the last show, it’ll be the last show,” he says. “Kiss the touring band will stop. But Kiss will continue in other ways. I have no problems with four deserving 20-year-olds sticking the makeup back on and hiding their identity. Mark Burnett [chairman, MGM Television producer of Survivor] shopped Kiss: The Next Generation, which was going to be a competition show to find out who's worthy to wear the crown.”
Sadly, Simmons and Burnett did not manage to sell the show. But Simmons revealed that he had other plans. He says Kiss could continue in the same way as other traveling productions that feature a rotating cast.
“Kiss will continue in ways that even I haven’t thought of,” Simmons adds. “But I can conceive of… Y'know, the Blue Man Group and Phantom of the Opera, tours around the world with different personnel. There could and should be a Kiss show, kind of live on stage with effects and everything else, but also [a] semi-autobiographical thing about four knuckleheads off the streets of New York that ends with the last third as a full-blown celebration of [Kiss]... A full-on performance. Not with us. Although, not a problem stepping in every once in a while.”
Back in April, Gene Simmons reiterated his invitation for Frehley to play live with the band on their End of the Road world tour.
“Jump up on stage with us for encores,” Simmons told Frehley on Twitter. “The fans would love it.”
His comments came after a 2019 Guitar World interview, in which he said Frehley was undependable and would never be able to fully rejoin the band.
“Ace and Peter Criss have gotten three chances,” he said. “They were in and out of the band – fired – three times. For drugs, alcohol, bad behaviour, being unprofessional. So the only reason Ace and Peter were let go the first time, and then the second time and then the third time, is that they weren't carrying their load.”
He added: “We’d love to have Ace and Peter join us here and there. And if they don’t, it’s not going to be because of us. But they’re never going to be in Kiss again...
“Would we welcome Ace or Peter to jump up onstage for a song or two? Of course. Could we depend on either Ace or Peter to do a full set night after night? Not on your fucking life.”
Frehley subsequently retaliated to Simmons' comments, asserting that his “slanderous remarks” had cost him “millions of dollars”.
But things seem sweet again on Frehley's side, too. Last year, the guitarist said that “anything's possible”.
“I said, ‘I never closed the door on anything,’” he told Eddie Trunk. “If the money's right and it's presented to me in the right way, anything can happen.”