In May of 1979 I had just turned six years old. I had a fun birthday, I really did. But my late father had one more gift in store, and that was the brand new KISS album, Dynasty. This is my second favorite album all-time from the band (#1 being Destroyer, DUH!) for a lot of reasons, some of which we’ll get into over here. Oh yeah, welcome to the final edition of Klassic Albums. This is gonna be bittersweet because it will actually be the last thing we officially post until Maestro’s Top Albums of the Year list in late December. So, whaddaya say we take one last trip down Memory Lane, shall we?
Starting with the rock/disco hybrid/anthem/smash hit “I Was Made For Lovin’ You” this was a whole new kind of KISS, for better or for worse. Some of us loved it, some of you hated it, and those in the middle were kind of “meh” on it. To this day it is still a klassic anthem and I always get jazzed whenever I hear it. This bleeds right into “2,000 Man.” Right here, this motherfucker is my second favorite Ace-sung song, just behind 1977’s “Shock Me.” At that point Ace Frehley was the epitome of cool. His playing, and the addition of some blue in his make-up just made him even more badass to six-year old me.
Next up? Another absolute gem with “Sure Know Something.” Mrs. Amps is several years younger than me, so we don’t always agree on music, but she fuckin’ loves this song every bit as much as I do. Taking her to see KISS for the first time in summer of 2010 is one of my fondest memories, by the way.The melody always pops into my head at the most random times, all these years later. And I can close my eyes and picture little me shaking my shoulders, trying (and failing) to move like Paul Stanley in the bedroom mirror. “Dirty Livin’” follows and while it is Peter Criss’ only vocal contribution, it is a great one.
After all of this, where the Hell is Gene Simmons?? Don’t worry he shows up in grand fashion with Side Two opener “Charisma.” I remember being captivated by this number just as much then as I am now. My friends and I used to put on “KISS Concerts” in my garage for the other kids in the neighborhood, and I used to love “performing” this track. I was already a megafan of the band since the age of four, but the songs on Dynasty really made me want to be a singer and performer. Guess I started honing my craft back then? “Magic Touch” is without a doubt one of my favorite vocals from my Hero, my God, and my Eternal Idol (see what I did there?) Paul Stanley, case closed.
Yet another killer tune from Ace pops up with “Hard Times,” and despite the polished sheen of the entire record it still manages to have some rocking teeth. Paul is far and away my favorite member of the band, but in 1979 I was all about The Spaceman, and this song is an example of why. Gene graces us with his presence one last time with “X-Ray Eyes,” a track that features a killer melody and infectious hook. Goddamn, I can still feel it like it was yesterday. Closing us out is, wait-what’s this? ANOTHER Frehley jam?? Holy fuck! “Save Your Love” boasts a biting riff and fantastic chorus that I couldn’t get enough of then, or now.
And that’s that. My take on the 1979 Klassic Album from KISS in Dynasty. Thank you to everyone who has taken these journeys with me. I love and appreciate each and every single one of you who ever spent some time with Amps and Green Screens. Thank you so much for seven great years of memories that I will love and cherish for the rest of my days. A&GS may be closing, but this is not goodbye. Maestro will be back in early 2021 and I am excited to share what comes next with all of you. From the bottom of my heart I seriously cannot thank you enough for the gift you have all given me. We will meet again… ~dc