Kiss – ‘Barbarize’ (Bootleg Series) – Album Review

In my quest for collecting Kiss Bootlegs for every tour they have done, I found another fantastic addition to the collection.  My local record shop, Hardy Boy Records, has been a goldmine of late for Bootlegs. I have now bought four over the last few months and all for tours I didn’t have (or a collection of Wicked Lester demos – that is another story that will be told later).

The last 2 I bought were actually at the same tour, so I guess that statement wasn’t entirely true.  The difference was one was the European Tour setlist (which will come in the next week or two) and this one is the North American leg of that tour with an ever so slightly different setlist.

Before we get in to where the show was and the music, lets first discus the cover as it is  pretty cool and what drew me to this one in the first place.  The cover is the same artwork as the Judas Priest album ‘Hero Hero’.  Thanks to Mike Ladano for pointing that out to me when I sent him a picture of the album and sure enough, he was right.

The back cover is pretty awesome as well. Why?  Well, Vinnie is in the picture.  Unless my memory is a little fuzzy, Vinnie had left the band back in 1983 and was not on this tour.  Come on people, pay attention to the details.  Is it really that hard. I would understand if you made the mistake and put Mark St. John on the cover since he at least did the album for that tour although he only performed in 3 live shows and this wasn’t one of them.  But Vinnie??

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As you see from the back cover, the show was in Milwaukee, Wisconsin on December 30, 1984 at the Mecca Arena.  And if you want an interesting fact about that show, it was the last date that Queensryche would be the opening act.  Once January hit, the opening act was Krokus which is who I saw as I saw this tour about 10 days later on January 9th in Atlanta at the Omni.

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The recording is an audience recording, if I’m not mistaken and a pretty damn good one I might add.  I don’t have any issues with the sound on this.  Everyone sounds great and it was done masterfully.  It is raw and uncut and spectacular.  Well, it isn’t completely uncut as they did remove the drum and bass solos from the show to fit it on the 2 LPs.

Now let us get to the setlist. There is a big error on the back cover with regards to the songs.  The song “I’ve Had Enough” is listed after “Heaven’s on Fire” and that is a big…NO!!!  The song they actually play is “Under the Gun” which is just as good.

Setlist:

  1. Detroit Rock City
  2. Cold Gin
  3. Creatures of the Night
  4. Fits Like a Glove
  5. Heaven’s on Fire
  6. Guitar Solo
  7. Under the Gun
  8. War Machine
  9. Young & Wasted (Eric singing)
  10. I Love it Loud
  11. I Still Love You
  12. Love Gun
  13. Black Diamond
  14. Oh Susanna (Encore)
  15. Lick It Up (Encore)
  16. Rock & Roll All Nite (Encore)

The one bad thing about this setlist is that there is really nothing I don’t already have on my other bootlegs.  I do like the fact it has Eric Carr singing “Young & Wasted” which is awesome they stated getting him involved in the singing. I love the labels on the Vinyl.  You get the name of the band as The Wizards Quest and no track listing on each side so someone hand wrote the track list for you.  So helpful…I really do appreciate that as then I know where to actually start.  I love the way the old bootlegs would put fake band names on the actual vinyl.  Awesome!!

But the best part of this show is hand’s down…Paul Stanley.

Paul is uncut and unfiltered in his raps between songs.  Oh my God!!!  One particular one he does is a long and horrendously horrible Michael Jackson impersonation. It is so cringe worthy.  He later rambles on about a woman that comes up to Gene and shows Gene her baby and says its Genes.  Gene and Paul deny it but Paul goes on to say that baby had the longest fucking tongue he’d ever seen. And let’s not forget about the story of him going to the doctor and having to pull out his Love Gun. And what is even worse, I actually remember these stories from my show.  When you are 16, you hang on every word Paul says.

It is these stories in between the songs that really takes this show to the next level.  And the language…wow, I forgot how much Paul cussed back then.  A sign of the times I guess.  He never did it when there were a ton of kids at the show and he doesn’t do it now.

Musically, you can’t go wrong with this setlist if you are an 80’s fan.  They do 9 songs from Creatures up to Animalize and there is nothing wrong with that at all.  After the song “Heaven’s On Fire”, there is a little guitar solo and I am thinking it is Paul and not Bruce. I don’t know if they had Bruce doing solos yet.  I am going off memory here, if I am wrong, please let me know in the comment below.

I am not going to go song by song as it is too many and if you are reading a review of a Kiss Bootleg, you already know how they sound and what they do.  The cover is really cool, the sound is excellent (as excellent as an audience recording can be), the set list is great and Paul is on point.  I am giving this a 4.5 out of 5.0 Stars because this is basically the show I saw 10 days later and for that it really holds a place in my heart.  It doesn’t get full marks for removing the drum and bass solo.  However, this one will get listened to a lot!

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)
  13. Kiss – Barbarize (Bootleg Series) – Album Review (ANIMALIZE WORLD TOUR 1984 – North American Tour)

40 thoughts on “Kiss – ‘Barbarize’ (Bootleg Series) – Album Review

  1. Cringe worthy Stanley raps! LOL. That sums up his stage banter right there as you know those same stories went from town to town back in 84 into 85.
    Krokus got on some good tours back then. I caught them in Oct/84 when they opened for Hagar.
    Glad to see you didn’t get hosed on the recording since its from the audience. Cool stuff John as its another great add to the collection.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. I’m going to like this one for awhile since it is so close to the actual show I saw. Man, the banter is horrible and yet it was so cool back then. As far as an audience recording, I don’t really know, it could be a soundboard as the sound is really good. It just felt like it was from the audience, but dang good quality. They had a nice recording system if so.

      Liked by 2 people

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