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KISS and Motley Crue, 'The Tour' - Live Review

On Friday, August 31, I saw The Tour with KISS and Motley Crue. The show was at Riverbend Music Center in Cincinnati and I went with my husband Eric and friend Joe, who flew in from D.C. for the weekend. We sat/stood on the lawn.

When we got to the venue, Motley was already playing, which surprised me because it was still very early. Turns out the band was on their first song, "Saints of Los Angeles" as we were being scanned in, so it didn't much matter.

I've currently got a messed up back and leg and was in a ton of pain that night, so I sort of hobbled up to a "family area" and was pleased to find a little barrier to lean against. People couldn't bring alcohol into the area, so it was basically empty. I was grateful for that barrier and the direct sight-line to the stage.

The Motley show was pretty typical. Vince Neil sounded better as the show went on. Joe had never seen them before, and I think he enjoyed it. Eric mocked Vince's high notes. Typical. I enjoyed Tommy Lee's drum solo and was jealous of the guy who got to ride along. I was thankful, for once, of not being down front because Motley blasted people with water cannons and that just would've been uncomfortable to be all soaked while waiting for KISS.

The new song, "Sex" just didn't sound very good live. I don't know if it is because the song doesn't translate well or what. I just wasn't impressed. As always "Dr. Feelgood" and "Girls Girls Girls" was a highlight for me. The band ended with "Kickstart My Heart" and poof - they were done. The set felt incredibly short.

After what felt like a longish wait of me getting up and down, trying to stay comfortable, KISS began. Before their curtain dropped, I couldn't help by laugh at all the promos asking people to text a number to receive KISS Army alerts. If Gene Simmons could bottle and sell air, he would!

This was my first KISS show (same for Eric and Joe) and the real reason why we were at the concert. KISS opened with "Detroit Rock City" and I decided I definitely need a pair of those famous platforms. "Shout It Out Loud" and "I Love It Loud" were next. Gene breathed fire, Paul Stanley pranced. During "Love Gun" Paul flew out on a little platform in the middle of the audience and that was cool. My favorite KISS song is "Lick It Up" and they played that next with a bit of an extended end. Then the band left the stage, giving audience the cue to beg for an encore. Since I was limping and had to be helped down steps, we decided to cut our losses early and leave while the band was playing "Calling Dr. Love" and "Rock n' Roll All Nite." It didn't matter that we left our positions as we could hear both songs clear as day while we walked the nine miles out to the car.

Later I learned that was the first time KISS did "Calling Dr. Love" on this tour. Apparently they've been switching up the second-to-last song quite a lot. I was a little surprised at not hearing "Duece" or "Strutter," but like Motley, the KISS set seemed super short. It was over in a flash!

Reader Comments (13)

Glad you finally got to see a KISS show, Allyson.

Out on the west coast, Deuce was pretty much the 2nd or 3rd song of the set.

As for Motley,did you feel, as a fan, that you got your money's worth out of Vince, or was every 3rd word good enough?

P.S. Supposedly, both KISS & Motley are doing the same amount of songs. 13, I think.
September 10, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterAce Steele
I feel like I got my money's worth. My ticket was only $16 (well, $25 after fees) -- I would have felt jipped if I'd paid $150 for a seat I think.
September 10, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterAllyson
We were there, too, sitting close to the front. We didn't feel jipped. I have before, though (Bret Michaels- 40-45 minutes is not good enough!). We got there before 7 and the Treatment was already playing. You probably missed Vince and Nikki walking through the pavillion Allyson. That was a surprise to me.

We felt both bands played an adequate amount of time. They played about what I expected. I really could do without the Tommy Lee roller coaster. I was bored. But then again, I don't care too much for the solos, I like full on action! I think Vince did a fair job although I do think he was better last summer. We enjoyed Kiss as well. I agree with Allyson about the Kiss Army promos. Do they want even more of my money? Really?

What we didn't enjoy? All the traffic after. That is the worst we've ever been caught in at Riverbend. Maybe it was bad timing for us? Also, the VIP area is too crowded during intermission. It is fine, quick and easy during the show but we actually didn't even use that area in between as the lines were horrible. They need to limit that area to less people-- or add more restrooms and refreshment counters.

Also,--- can we not make a section for tall people only?! I am 5'5 (plus wore 2 inch wedges), my boyfriend is 6'0 and neither one of us could see very well because (no offense meant) a tall, large bodied individual was directly in front of us. From now on it is either first 3 rows or not at all (I wish!). Seriously, I'd rather sit on the lawn if I am not going to see anyway. I say anyone over 6'0 needs to be in a reserved section, say Section 300, off center.

And one more thing, can we all stop recording everything? Sometimes I think no one actually watches the show because they are too busy recording it. We have been to shows that you couldn't even see the stage because of all the arms and phones in the air. Oh, well. I guess the only thing I would be 100% happy with at this point is front row!

Other than that, we had a good time at the show. I will say that lately, I am finding myself having more fun watching bands I haven't seen before, though. I even skipped Poison this summer and they are my fave! I enjoyed Three Doors Down last summer and Godsmack more.
September 10, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterKendra
Sure is alot of bitchin and complaining in these reviews.
September 10, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterSleaze Rocker
Ally, Pretty sure Gene & Paul already have the price of air factored into your ticket. ;-) Sorry to hear about your back. Sounds to me like sciatica? (Ask me how i know that) LOL. Glad you finally got to see Kiss live. I may bag on them, but they are hands down the best live band I've ever witnessed.Unlike a certain lead singer who opened for them that night, they seem to always give their all, even now that they're into their 60's.
September 10, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterGary
Saw them at Alpine Valley in East Troy, WI. It rained (downpoured) basically through Motley's set. At first it sucked getting wet, but then when everyone is just drenched it made the night memorable and I think both bands went over and above thanking the audience for sticking with it. Or at least those of us outside the pavillion.

Both sets were predictable, but I tell you its the best $20 I spent all year BY FAR !!! I got too drunk with the rain and just having a good time with everyone to do an actual review. I was just there to have some plain old end of summer fun.

I do remember the extended Lick It Up tune that I thought was good and I almost think they through another song in the middle of it, just can't quite remember what it was.

Ipod to drive to work song of the morning ~ BLOOZE by Junkyard (glam enough for ya ?)
September 10, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterGNR
WOW, good reviews, all!

And Kendra, I must applaud you! That is some of THE most poetic complaining I have ever heard! Your boyfriend is a lucky man. Since I've heard my fair share of bitchin' and moanin', to borrow a phrase from Sleaze, as well as held my own in that regard in relationships, I would guess you must keep him laughing. When it reaches the heights of the art form you have raised bitchin' to, it's really quite hilarious.

Ally, I, too am glad you finally got to see KISS, though I would recommend going back when you're not hurting and splurging for tix in the first few rows. It truly is the spectacle Gary, Ace, GNR and some of the others on here have made it out to be.

I finally saw them in 1996 at Madison Square Garden, point blank, having been too stupid to not see them before hand. It was amazing as they performed the same set they made famous in 1977, putting the audience in a time machine back to their heyday.

Let me just say, it was stunningly jaw dropping, to say the least, from my 4th row seats right in front of Ace who wound up putting his black nail polished hand in my face over and over on his slashing downstroke of one of their huge song endings right before the encore (I would have to go back to a '77 performance to pinpoint which song), creating one of the biggest Rock and Roll Moments of My Life, right up there with seein' Zep third row with Page crankin' the lead to "Heartbreaker" from no more than 20 ft. away.

You guys have made me wish I had seen them this Summer. I don't know if I'll have another chance, but you certainly are motivating me to do so, particularly to see Thayer, who, it seems, has contributed a lot to reinvigorate the band. Maybe they'll keep touring off "Monster" once it hits. I would love to see them perform "Hell Or Hallelujah", easily my favorite song of the summer, and fave of the year, so far!

And I would love to see the extended version of "Lick It Up". I have to laugh at this whole thing, though, as the song was penned by Vinnie Vincent an Gene and Paul used to get on him for laying in the extra lead at the end live. Here they are now happily doing it! Huh-uh-lo-oh, IRONY!

Perhaps Ace Steele could shed some light on it all, having seen them on every tour since the beginning, a huge accomplishment unto itself!

p.s. GNR! Yes! Yes! AND YES! "Blooze"!!! Absolutely one of "My Favorite Glam Metal Songs of All Time". I also had the pleasure of seein' them perform this song on two separate occasions, point blank at The Cat Club in NYC, the first of which when they blew The Black Crowes, who were opening for them, off the stage. Ramones meets ZZ Top with a Vince Neil clone for a singer, I highly recommend to everyone who duzn't have Junkyard's stuff to go buy it immediately!
September 10, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterMetalboy!
I was about 20 rows back on the floor and the show was amazing and worth every penny of the $15 I paid. Motley was pretty atrocious, and I heard more than a few people saying that they would never pay to see them again. KISS was great. The energy and show is unparalleled. The opening act, The Treatment, were pretty badass too. I'll never understand how people show up "late" to a show, when the ticket clearly tells you what time it starts, *shrugs*
September 11, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterKenny Ozz
I am going to see this show tomorrow night. Haven't seen Kiss since the Pshycho Circus tour and Crue since 1987. I saw Vince in 96 but that doesn't really count. I'm sure it will be fun, no matter what.

Metalboy! - I didnt see Kiss for the first time until 1981 so can't say what song you were referring to for certain. But, Black Diamond comes to mind. Could that be it?

Also, I think its ok to bitch and complain too. Everybody does it, whether its about Vince's Chipmunkian high notes (thanks Metalboy! - now I'll never be able to get that association out of my head), or him singing every third word, or Maiden not playing the songs Christian wants. We can't all be positive all the time. Kendra had a few good points there.
September 11, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterRita
Geez, it appears that my comment did turn into a critical review of the evening and venue...


Actually, we love Riverbend. It is my favorite venue and we had a great time at the show. I looked forward to it all summer and can't wait til next time. Buckcherry is up next in a small local club. I hope boyfriend will still go with me after my critique!
September 11, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterKendra
Kenny O! WOW! Dyin' I haven't seen KISS yet! Also, can't wait until October 15th! That's the day KISS releases their new album, "Monster". Based on the 'monster' single, "Hell Or Hallelujah", (back in the day, this would have been a huge FM hit), so will the album be a MONSTER! And I wouldn't bust too hard on Crüe. You are still lucky you saw 'em since who knows how much longer Mars will be around, sorry to say.

Rita! What can I say. Have you scheduled our elopement yet? Oops! Forgot yer married. Your husband is a lucky man! Yer kinda right on the complaining thing but, in general, people should try to let it go when goin' to a show accept when it comes to getting one's line of site blocked.

Whenever I'm point blank at a show in a general admission or standing room only situation, I usually let people directly behind me not as tall as I stand in front of me.

Anywho, I am so excited for you about the upcoming concert. Based on what I've seen, both with seein' Crüe two Summers ago and recent footage of KISS, you are in for a Real R'n'R Treat.
September 11, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterMetalboy!
Go, Kendra!

And Rita, I'm laffin' 'bout the whole Chipmunkian reference but Ace Steele may have a better analogy when he claims Vince is actually doing Woody Woodpecker impressions, hahaha!!!
September 11, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterMetalboy!
I meant $151. Damn.
September 11, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterKenny Ozz

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