Another years Download festival was coming to an end, so what better way to say goodbye then with KISS. This being their second time at Download, adding to their two visits to the previous Monsters of Rock, during their 43 year tenure – making Motley Crue’s retirement after 34 years seem rather slovenly.
Ending a day with a decidedly classic rock hue to it they blasted through a back catalogue of greatest hits, getting us started with ‘Detroit Rock City’. The huge nature of their sing-along cock rock, from ‘Calling Dr Love’ to ‘Lick it Up’, was matched by the humongous stage show. Wearing more make up and higher heels than your mother, laden with armour plated costumes, rising pillars for each member and enough bursts of flame and fireworks to make Rammstein envious. That’s not to mention Paul Stanley’s constant preaching to the sea of people and soaring through the crowd on a winch during 1977’s anthemic ‘Love Gun’. Not forgetting Gene Simmons’s blood spitting bass solo just before the menacing stomp of ‘God of Thunder – they were as ever the consummate showmen.
The encore was jammed packed with eternal KISS favourites, “Destroyer’s” ‘Shout It Out Loud’, their disco number ‘I Was Made For Lovin You’ and perhaps their most famous tune, the effervescent ‘Rock and Roll All Nite’. Their return to Download was superb, their monolithic rock anthems and dazzling performance had 85,000 enraptured and unwillingly to leave.
Photo Credit: Andrew Whitton/Download 2015