Kiss – The Tickler (Bootleg Series) – Album Review

A month ago, local record shop Hardy Boys Records bought a Kiss collection and offered up for sale. Everything was going to drop on that next Saturday at 10am. I got up, showered, dressed and headed out the door and arrive about 9:50 and luckily only one person was in line ahead of me.  Great conversations were had about our love for Kiss. I picked up 6 different Kiss pieces that were not in my collection one was this Bootleg called The Tickler.

‘The Tickler’ is an independent released bootleg of the bands concert from the Scandinavium which is in Gothenburg, Sweden.  The show was on the Lick It up Tour and dates to November 18, 1983.  It isn’t the full show as that show had 17 songs.  This one is only 8 songs and 2 solos including Gene Simmon’s bass solo and Vinnie Vincent’s guitar solo.

The bootleg is limited to 500 copies (no, it’s not numbered).  It has the green cover as there is one with a red cover floating around as well.  The packaging is very limited.  you get the horrible black & white photos on the front and back of the album jackets is blank.  The labels on the vinyl are pretty basic black with an A & B on each side and the name of the label, Roxy Records.  No special inserts or any bonus items.  Plain and simple.  My guess this came out in the 80’s.  Now the copy I bought was sealed, but to me that is a complete and utter waste.  I want to hear it, so I opened it and played it…SUE ME!!!

So what does it sound like?  Let me tell you.  I am not positive if it is an audience recording, but most likely it is.  The levels are pretty good and the drums aren’t as loud as I would like, but the guitars and vocals are good.  It is definitely Kiss live and untouched as you hear all the mistakes both musically and vocally.  Raw Kiss is the best way.

Set List:

  1. Creatures of the Night
  2. Detroit Rock City
  3. Fits Like a Glove
  4. Exciter (Paul solo)
  5. War Machine
  6. Gimme More (Vinnie’s solo)
  7. I Love It Loud (Gene’s solo)
  8. I Still Love You

What is great about the set list they have on hear as that they stuck mostly with the songs from Lick It Up and Creatures of the Night (of course Detroit Rock City is not from those albums, that is why I said mostly).  The cool thing about the tracks selected is that three of them I don’t have on any other bootleg recording as of time of this writing…”Creatures of the Night”, “Exciter” and “Gimme More”.  So those are the three songs I will focus mostly on unless one of the other songs has something special to mention.

The album opens with “Creatures of the Night” and it is a great opening track as it balls to wall power and They play it fast and heavy and it is over pretty quick when the kick in to “Detroit Rock City”.  As they did in the 80’s, they seem to speed up all the songs and played them really fast.  Eric’s the drummer and keeping the pace so that is on him with his fast playing.  He’s probably trying to keep up with Vinnie’s speed guitar.

“Fits Like a Glove” has Gene singing away and the only cool thing about it was the extended guitar solo at the end that bled in to “Exciter”. The solo had a lot of crowd interaction.  I am thinking the solo was Paul as Vinnie has one coming up unless he did two.  That would have pissed the guys off.  I love having a Paul solo on a bootleg as that might be a first for me as well.  On “Exciter”, one of the backing vocals is so high-pitched and out of tune that it is scary.  It has to be Vinnie as Gene wouldn’t go that high and neither would Eric.  Side A ends with “War Machine” and Gene does a great job as usual.

Side B kicks off with “Gimme More” and definitely a first for me on this song.  They stick pretty well to the album version and it sounds great.  Paul was really on that night and his voice was in top form. There is a hiccup in the recording as it goes completely out for like a millisecond and back on again. The song ends with a Vinnie solo and is pretty great.  His speed and dexterity is quite impressive.  It is quite different than an Ace solo for sure.  This is my first Vinnie solo on a bootleg as well so it is great to have this release.

We go straight in to the Gene Simmon’s bass solo after Paul finishes off with this scatting on “Gimme More” and it is typical Gene soloing.  The pure evil sounding bass and Gene the badass standing there wanting applause and the big gong going off in the background.  Classic Gene…”Oh Yeah…”, but no “Alright” before he goes in to “I Love it Loud”.  Then we end this bootleg with “I Still Love You”…not a typical song to end with, but it isn’t the end of the show, only this bootleg.  The show still had 5 more songs and an Eric drum solo.  The good thing is this song isn’t sped up like the rest.  Paul sounds great and they stick pretty well to the actual song.  Overall a great performance.

Now to sum it all up, the album sounds really great and worth listening to again and again. I got a few songs and solos I didn’t have before.  The biggest complaint is it isn’t the whole show.  I will take it as it now gives me a show from the Lick It Up Tour which was one I was missing.  That gives 12 bootlegs from 12 different tours.  Only 20-25 more to go (well, some crazy number like that) if I am to get one from every tour.  I would rate this as a 3.5 out of 5.0 Stars.

Check out the rest of the series if you have time!!  Thanks for stopping by!!

  1. Kiss – ‘Accept No Imitations’ (Bootleg Series) – Album Review (ASYLUM TOUR)
  2. Kiss – Look Wot You Dun to Me (Bootleg Series) – Album Review (CRAZY NIGHTS TOUR)
  3. Kiss – The Summer of Satan: The Devils Ride Out! (Bootleg Series) – Album Review (DESTROYER TOUR)
  4. Kiss – Return to Capital Center (Bootleg Series) – Album Review (DYNASTY TOUR)
  5. Kiss – With Fire & Thunder (Bootleg Series) – Album Review (HOTTER THAN HELL TOUR)
  6. Kiss – Northhampton PA March 19th, 1975 (Bootleg Series) – Album Review (DRESSED TO KILL TOUR)
  7. Kiss – The Hottest Show On Earth (Bootleg Series) – Album Review (THE HOTTEST SHOW ON EARTH TOUR 2010)
  8. Kiss – All the Way to the Ball Room (Bootleg Series) – Album Review (Australian Tour 1995)
  9. Kiss – Kiss of Thunder (Bootleg Series) – Album Review (The Rising Sun Tour 2006)
  10. Kiss – Agora Ballroom 1974: The Cleveland Broadcast plus Bonus Cuts (Bootleg Series) – Album Review (THE KISS TOUR)
  11. Kiss – Hotter Than Hell: Radio Broadcast 1976 (Bootleg Series) – Album Review (ROCK & ROLL OVER TOUR)
  12. Kiss – The Tickler (Bootleg Series) – Album Review (LICK IT UP TOUR 1983)

84 thoughts on “Kiss – The Tickler (Bootleg Series) – Album Review

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s