Friday, July 28, 2006

KISS at Chumash Casino


Jacki and I took a quick trip about 130 miles north of LA to see KISS perform in a tiny venue in the Chumash Casino. We took off from LA around 2pm on Wednesday and checked into our hotel in Buellton California. We headed to the casino around 6pm.

This was definitely not your typical Vegas casino. Although it was clean and looked fairly new it definitely was missing the glitz and glamor of the Vegas strip. But what did we care we weren't there to gamble.

The show started just a little after 8pm.

Now for those that know me well, and if you had read my blog post from a couple of months back you'd know I'm a huge KISS fan. This marked my 17th time to see the band. This was one of the best performances I've ever seen them give. They were playing a small venue to 1300 people and they actually cared about how they sounded. The small stage just allowed them to interact musically much better than they do when they play a large arena.

The setlist was great. Eric Singer was back to playing more engergized versions of the songs and Tommy is now in full on fake-Ace mode.

There were a few incredible surprises. First was as they kicked into Detroit Rock City to open the set we suddenly realized this isn't a stripped down show as originally advertised. The Pyro was in full force. The next surprise came a few songs into the set as they introduced a song from their first album called "Kissin' Time". This song has only been documented as being performed 3 other times in their entire career. This is the first known performance in the US since May 24, 1974. Paul, and Gene traded vocals on verses just like the studio version and Eric Singer sang Peter's part. This is one of those nights you normally only get to read about, and to know that I was there. I was able to get a video recording on my camera as they played it. The sound is a little muffled but now it has been captured!

Although the set didn't have any additional shockers they did play some tunes that aren't in heavy rotation including Got To Choose, Heaven's On Fire and Come On And Love Me.

After the show we headed to the front to begin the search for unclaimed guitar pics. Luck was on my side and I was able to find two Tommy pics under piles of confetti. Of course Jacki is amused by me degenerating into my mode of trying to pics as if my life depended on it. The Tommy Thayer signatures on the pics were different that the Tommy Thayer pic I got in 2003. Always great to continue adding to the collection.


KISS
July 26, 2006
Chumash Casino
Santa Ynez, California

Set List:

Detroit Rock City
Makin' Love
Watchin' You
King of the Night Time World
Deuce
Christine Sixteen
Firehouse
Got To Choose
Strutter
Heaven's On Fire
Kissin' Time
I Love It Loud
Love Gun
God of Thunder
Do You Love Me
Shout It Out Loud
Black Diamond
Let Me Go, Rock & Roll

Encore:
C'mon and Love Me
God Gave Rock & Roll To You
Rock and Roll All Night

As you see from the picture of the set list above both Kissin' Time and C'mon and Love Me were not on the printed set lists the band used. Spontaneous additions to the set are always the best. The bands playing was spot on as were the vocals including some great harmonies from Eric. And the sound guys also did an amazing job. You could hear every instrument and vocal crystal clear and nothing was distorted. Lets hope the bootleggers were out.

This has been an amazing couple of months of concerts for me and to think I saw KISS twice and they aren't even on tour. First the VH1 Rock Honors, and now this show in Chumash. I really wish I had planned for the time off so I could go see the show they have scheduled at the same venue on Friday. If only all concerts could be this good.

With that I leave you with a picture Jacki took of me during the final encore of Rock And Roll All Night with the band onstage, the KISS sign in the background and confetti all through the air. It was a great night.

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