I wanna rock and roll all night…
I wanna rock and roll all night…digitally!
Let's do a very short history of KISS, shall we?
1970s: KISS hits it big, they're loved by everyone (actually teens and head-bangers, but you know what I mean).
1980s: KISS takes off their make-up, loses various band members, and are considered defunct. Somewhere in Kansas, a lonely teenager feels he missed the boat.
1990s: KISS puts make-up back on and become a huge nostalgic act. Thousands of merchandise items are released, including KISS socks and colostomy bags.
2000s: KISS continues to play to mythic proportions and release a new DVD combining rock music and an Australian orchestra. The Pope regards this as a sign of the Second Coming. Mass panic ensues.
And there you have it. As any KISS fan knows, the band is comprised of four members: Paul Stanley (Star Child), Gene Simmons (The Demon), Tommy Thayer replacing original Ace Frehley (Space Ace), and Peter Criss (Cat Man). These four mysterious rockers have produced some of the most beloved music of our time. Or, if you're not comfortable with that statement, they at least gave us a reason to giggle like schoolgirls at the 1970s (albums include Spinal Tap-ish titles like "Animalize,"" Lick It Up," "Crazy Nights," and "Hot in the Shade"). After the debacle that was Detroit Rock City (did anyone like that movie?), KISS went back to their roots and in 2003 released KISS Symphony: The DVD, a two-disc set featuring the boys backed by the Melbourne Symphony Orchestra from a concert in February of 2003 (with over 40,000 fans in attendance). Included on this set are the following songs:
Act One (rock and roll only):
• Let Me Go Rock & Roll
• Lick It Up
• Calling Dr. Love
• Psycho Circus
Act Two (acoustic with strings):
• Goin' Blind
• Sure Know Something
Act Three (full-blown symphony):
• Detroit Rock City
• King of the Night Time World
• Do You Love Me
• Shout It Out Loud
• God Of Thunder
• Love Gun
• Black Diamond
• Great Expectations
• I Was Made For Lovin' You
• Rock and Roll All NiteKISS Symphony: The DVD is presented in 1.78:1 anamorphic widescreen. I was pleased with how this transfer turned out—often video concerts don't look great, and while KISS Symphony isn't fantastic, it does look very good. There is a small amount of contrast in the brightness, though with all the pyrotechnics its to be expected. Overall the colors and black levels all appear to be sharp and well defined. The soundtrack is presented in Dolby Digital 5.1 Surround, DTS Surround, and Dolby Digital 2.0 Surround, all in English. As KISS themselves might say, "you wanted the best, you got the best": both the Dolby 5.1 and DTS sound mixes are of grand quality. All speakers are engaged throughout the length of the concert making for a very enveloping experience. This is the DVD KISS fans have been waiting for and parents have nightmares about. No alternate subtitles are included on this disc.
The extra features on this disc are fairly slim: all that's been included is an interview with an Australian TV show, a live acoustic performance (with a few selected symphony players) of the song "Should Know Something" on that same show, and a few web links to various KISS sites.Read full review