A Random (But Short) Walk Through Amazon

by thoughtsonthedead

I am in equal parts awed and disturbed by how well Amazon can figure out what books I want to read.

This casual guide turns out to be a disappointment when you read the full description, as it covers the whole of Paul’s* career, KISS and his solo stuff. If it were just about his solo stuff, then I would read it, just to watch an author slowly lose his mind trying to make a book out two or three shitty albums, some solo tours, and Phantom in Toronto and other places that were not New York.

Speaking of KISS:

kiss solo albums
Amazon also thinks I would like this book and, reading the description, I just might:

This work represents the culmination of a massive effort made to celebrate the then 35th anniversary of the 1978 KISS solo albums in 2013. As a detailed exploration of those solo album releases the KissFAQ website endeavored to delve into the depths of minutiae interviewing those musicians and supporting cast of characters directly involved in the four simultaneous projects. There is only one way to conclude any introduction to this work… To: Paul, Peter, Ace, & Gene

First off: Enthusiasts, you know how much I enjoy writers who employ a personal grammar.

Second: “The 35th anniversary of the KISS solo albums” is a sad phrase. It’s like a rock climbing wall on a cruise ship: it shouldn’t exist and it’s not very good. Doing cocaine off strippers shouldn’t exist and yet it does, because it is so very good. This is the opposite of snorting a rail of now-mixed-with-glitter cocaine off a naked and attractive stranger, and I am talking about schnarfing that yayo off of that fat booty or them tittays.

Back in the old days, rock stars would use every part of the stripper.

You are getting hard to follow.

Observation of a subject extended into a humorous metaphor elaborated on briefly and followed by an ironic aside.

Just talk about the Dead.

I was going to mention the 33 1/3 book on Workingman’s Dead’s by Buzz Poole–get your pre-order in before the Xmas rush–as a counter-argument: how dare I mock something when the Dead has generated the precise same effluvia.

The difference is that Workingman’s Dead was an actual good album and the four KISS solo albums each suck worse than the one next to it; if you arranged them in a circle, then you would have a Ouroborous of suck. Sometimes people will say about overly long albums that there was enough material for one really good record. The four KISS solo albums had maybe an EP’s worth of good songs in them, and none of them were on Peter’s record, which they had to force him to do. All Peter wanted to do was play drums and dress like a kitty.

(Workingman’s is one of the Dead’s two good studio albums, the other being American Beauty, which was recorded in the same sessions. There is a very good essay to be written comparing Beauty and Workingman’s to Use Your Illusion, I and II. The preceding sentence is why I have not been asked by the 33 1/3 people to write a book for them.)

*The very first angry comment I every got was when I posted the essential compilation of Paul’s stage banter People, Let Me Get This Off My Chest. I stand by the posting then, and I stand by its reposting here: