KISS Kicks It Up With "Creatures"
K. Fontenot | Louisiana | 12/01/2009
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Considered by many (including myself) to be KISS' heaviest album, "Creatures of the Night" rips open with the title track and surges on through eight more rockers. While I have personally labeled a few single tracks on other KISS albums as "blistering," "Creatures" features almost nothing but "blistering" tracks. Even the pop-tinged "Keep Me Comin'" and "Danger" have a brutal tone to them. The lone ballad, "I Still Love You," holds its own as well.
Standout tracks include the title track, the banging "Killer," the anthemic "I Love It Loud," and gritty "War Machine."
As many have already stated, "War Machine" gives the listener a taste of the old Demon persona that put Gene Simmons on the map. Paul Stanley works all of his tunes with perfection, proving to listeners that despite the absence of Peter Criss and Ace Frehley and the lackluster reception of a few earlier albums, KISS was alive and well in the early 80's. While Frehley might be on the cover, he's nowhere on the album. Instead, his shoes are filled by a number of players, most notably Vinnie Vincent and Bruce Kulick.
The most important piece of this particular KISS album, however, is drummer Eric Carr. While he was featured on "Music From The Elder" and the new tracks released on "Killers," Carr shines on "Creatures." It's the first full-length album to showcase Carr's rocking drums. From the opening track to the end, Carr's superior drumming drives this album.
This particular version of "Creatures" features the band (including Frehley) on the cover in makeup with modified graphics and has been remastered. There are a two other covers available to KISS collectors, the original and an "unmasked" cover featuring Bruce Kulick. As with the original release, it is dedicated to Neil Bogart, the founder of Casablanca records. The liner notes featured behind the disc on the remastered version are excellent, primarily for the fact that a failed tour, personnel issues, and the removal of the legendary KISS makeup are bluntly (albeit briefly) addressed.
Along with "Revenge," I believe that "Creatures of the Night" is one of the best non-original lineup KISS albums. I think that it will satisfy even the staunchest Frehley/Criss fans and defenders. It's in my top five KISS list, and I highly recommend it to anyone wanting a taste of the best KISS from the 80's."
Best Kiss Studio Album
J. Taylor | 12/27/2009
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Hot Stuff! No S**t! That's what was written on the sign next to Creatures when I went to buy it in 1982 at the Wherehouse on "E" Street in San Bernardino, California. I liked Destroyer, Rock and Roll Over, Love Gun and Alive 2. I also think that Music from the Elder is one of their better albums, but Creatures was the one I was waiting for since I heard "Larger than Life", "All American Man" and "Rocket Ride" on Alive 2. I knew they could do it! The first time I listened to this record, I had to slap myself to make sure I was awake. There is not ONE crappy song on this album to break the spell of sheer metal/rock pleasure the listener will experience while playing this album. The one slow song on this album, "I Still Love You", is so good that the woman that Paul is singing to should have given him another chance.
Now as we all know, Kiss isn't really a "metal" band, but so what! If they had done more albums as superbly as this one, they never would have been compelled to remove the make-up in the first place. And just to prove that this album was not a "happy accident", Lick It Up (the first without the make-up) makes an excellent companion piece to Creatures. Creatures of the Night lives up to all the Kiss hype since 1975's Alive! Get it now!"
S. Mehaffey | Los Angeles | 01/29/2010
(3 out of 5 stars)
"So we get the sequel to Alive II...5 years later. Up until then Kiss could do no wrong, executing a perfect career plan for three years. Then it's solo albums, a shameless disco song, the cartoon disco album, the door handle album with the video of Gene crying like the Indian in those public service commercials! Baffling when you consider Kiss held the metal crown, and freakin' used Priest and Maiden as openers in '79 and '80!, Kiss just handing their fans over on a silver platter, as wave after wave of metal washed in from ashore. Unbelievable, stunningly bad career moves..an 11 year old kid could have managed their career bettr...me.
So...I mean 2 years after British Steel, and Back in Black...anyway I loved it then, still do.
No one does Kiss like Kiss, what was left of the faithful lapped this thing up like we'd been lost in th desert for at least 3 years.
But what a wake up call for Paul and Gene. It was either this, or open a hot dog stand in downtown New York by this point.
Ace got in a serious auto accident, and couldn't play on Creatures, so they used phantom guitarists."