The Envy opened the show & they were NOT a good opening band for KISS. They were a local winner who won the chance to open for KISS & they were more like a Hot Topic band than a band that should open for KISS. While they played I found myself looking around at the KISS families; the Mom's & Dad's with their little kids decked out in KISS costumes...it was a really sweet thing to see in all honesty because KISS are old men at this point & the show is a family thing, it's NOT like going to see GG Allin or some crazy madman where the show is unpredictable, it's pure entertainment & fluff.
As I was entering the parking area I saw RV's parked & one had a giant Gene Simmons action figure in the window which made me laugh. Even in the parking lot it was very family oriented, there were Dad's drinking their beers and Moms getting the kiddies ready to enter the front gate.
KISS played the same set they've been playing for the entire tour so I won't mention the set list, it's stock at this point with 3 songs from Sonic Boom as the new shit & one odd song, "Crazy Nights" jammed in for obscurity freaks.
Notice how I panned over The Academy is...there's a reason, they bored the shit outta me & they might fly opening for U2, but for KISS they were annoying at best & they ended on a cover of "Fox on the Run" which was an unflattering cover!
KISS took the stage on a platform that went from the back of the drum riser to the front of the stage & it was something different from their usual entrance, but it was nothing special to be honest with you.
"Modern Day.." was a good opener because this is the Sonic Boom tour, so starting with the first single off the new record made sense.
During one of the Sonic Boom songs Paul Stanley made a remark that Sonic Boom was available exclusively at WalMart & then the crowd laughed & snickered & he said, "Well, I've gotta get my plugs in!" & they proceeded to play "I'm An Animal" off Sonic Boom.
KISS is involved with the wounded warrior program & brought 2 soldiers onstage & handed them a check & this led Paul into reciting the Pledge of Allegiance onstage & afterwards the bulk of the crowd began chanting "USA, USA, USA!" & at this point it felt more like Pro-Wrestling than a KISS concert!
Interestingly, after that uber-patriotism the band played "Lick it Up!"
This show was pretty much stock, nothing interesting really happened other than Paul doing "Whole Lotta Love" by Led Zeppelin right before "Black Diamond" & that's usual for this tour, then the last 2 songs were "God Gave Rock N Roll To You II" & "Rock N Roll All Nite" & naturally Paul did not toss out his broken guitar because he sells them for $5,000.
I know some people do not like this version of KISS, but for what it was, it's pure entertainment, it's a show that's meant to make you forget your life & troubles for a few hours & if you can overlook the fact that Tommy Thayer is singing "Shock Me" these days, then you can actually enjoy this band & their current tour.
Actually, the best part of the set was "Beth" because Eric Singer nails the vocals & the band plays it live with acoustic guitars as opposed to the canned music that Peter Criss always used!
Probably the most interesting KISS merch they were selling was autopgraphed Tommy Thayer pictures for $30 which included 3 KISS guitar pics & they also were selling autographed Tommy Thayer guitar straps alongside autographed Eric Singer drum heads....when will they realize KISS fans ONLY want Gene & Paul autographs, NOT Tommy or Eric stuff!