When KISS anounced their farewell in 2000 I hoped they’ll come to Europe too for one last time. Sadly enough for us European fans the farewell tour will not come to us. So I decided to go to their last concerts in New York. First they said that those concerts would be hold in september 2000. But that was pushed back to november ’cause they put more and more extra dates in the states. Then they anounced that the last dates in the US would be proberly in March 2001. But again that was pushed back because they anounced a farewell tour to Japan & Australia in march/april. I hoped again for a possible European tour, but they said after this Japan/Australian tour they only give a copple of last shows in the States. Because they have no official date(s) released of these last concerts in the States I decided to go down under. I’m going to the show in Adelaide on april 1th. I ordered a ticket online (paradise-ticket) and booked my holiday right away. I thought if I be there I should stay a little bit longer. There are also some KISS-expo in Australia. On march 31 there is one in Adelaide with the tribute band; Love Gun. Also KISS-dealers will be there.
So let’s get over to my report from down under;
I left The Netherlands on monday march 26 and with a stop in Hong Kong I arrived in Adelaide, Australia on wednesday march 28. After a flight of 24 hours I was very tired and need a day rest to overcome the jetlag. Adelaide is a nice city and in the town you saw a lot of KISS-ads for the Adelaide show in the Entertainment Centre. I was lucky enough to got my hands on a few posters. I met a lot of fans there and they where amazed that I was coming overseas to see KISS here. I’ve just wait for a copple of days to see them here in Adelaide. I was also thinking, that now that I’m here maybe I should go to Melbourne to see 3 more shows. The next day I decided to do that, so I ordered my tickets for 3 nights, april 3, 4 & 5 and maked sure that I had a hotel and a busticket. So, now instead of 1 show I ended up with 4 shows. I can hardly wait!
On saturday march 31 there’s a KISS-expo in Hackham, a subburn of Adelaide. After a cardrive of 30 minutes I arrived at the expo, organised by KISS Strike, located in a big Irish pub. I was there around 6:30 pm and there where some dealers who had a lot of merchandise, but nothing new stuff. I must say that the expo was small, in Europe they are much bigger and have more dealers. On the expo I met a guy who was dressed up like Gene Simmons and he had did a very good job.
He looked and was a better Gene than that guy from the tribute band Love Gun, who will play later that night. On the expo they showed the pressconference from Sydney and some live footage from Japan. After a kareoke & a longest tounge contest it was time for the coverband Love Gun from the USA. They where good, but I’ve seen better tribute bands. The outfits & guitars where pretty sheap and fake. The sound was not so good but they played a full show with all the effects. Also I meet again a lot of fans there and I had a great evening.
KISS Live In Adelaide, April 1th:
On sunday april 1 I arrived at the Entertainment Centre at 6:30 pm, I had a paradise (seat) ticket. But because they change the venue from a outdoor to a indoor concert my seatticket was now a standing ticket. But I had a good place, direct behind the heaven section. I met some fans who also attended the expo. The support act The Sreaming Yets, a Australian band, started around 8 pm and played for 25 minutes. I’ve never heard their music but they weren’t bad. Then at 9 pm it was time for the greatest rock & roll band on earth: KISS!!! They started with Detroit Rock City and Gene, Paul & Ace came down on a platform, Also Eric’s drum came down. The stage was huge with 2 big KISS-logo’s and stairs. Also their where 2 little and 1 big video screen.
The sound was great and KISS played their ass off. They had a lot of fun on stage. Also Eric kicked ass, I know he’s no original member, but his kind of drumming gives the show and sound more power. Sometimes Gene looked over to Eric and tried Eric to slow down a little bit. They did all the effects like Gene’s firebreathing, Ace’s shocking & smoking guitarsolo (when Ace shoots off a rocket that hit a lamp, this time he falls down on the stage)
Paul’s flying over the crowd to the little stage and of course Gene’s bloody flying bass solo. New is the drumsolo of Eric with flaming sticks. This is very cool to see! During Black Diamond Eric’s drum goes up with a lot of fireworks. There where also some suprises, Paul trows & shoots (with a big gun) T-shirts in the audience, during Do You Love Me you see a video that shows the history of 28 years KISS, Paul sings Shandi and during their second encore they play a medley with songs as; 2000 Man, Parasite & She. During their last song, Rock & Roll All Night, the confetti machine is spitting the hole song and Gene, Ace & Eric’s drum went up and Paul smash his guitar on stage. KISS was in a very good shape this evening and also the crowd was very good into the show. I was glad that this isn’t my last show. They played for almost 140 minutes.
The setlist was: Detroit Rock City, Deuce, Shout It Out Loud, Talk To Me, I Love It Loud, Firehouse incl. Gene’s firebreathing,
Do You Love Me, Calling Dr. Love, Heaven’s On Fire, Let Me Go Rock & Roll, Shock Me incl. Ace’s gitaarsolo, Psycho Circus, Lick It Up, Gene’s bloody bass-solo, God Of Thunder incl.Eric’s flamming sticks drum-solo
Cold Gin, 1000.000 Years, Love Gun incl. Paul flying act, I Still Love You, Shandi, Black Diamond. 1 encore: I Was Made For Lovin’ You. 2e encore (medley): 2000 Man, Parasite & She and as last: Rock And Roll All Night.
Merchandise: they sold about 6 different tour shirts at au$ 45 – 50,-. Programm au$ 45, -. Poster au$ 15, -. Keychain or sticker au$ 10, -. Guitarstrings Ace au$ 60, -. Baseball cap au$ 40, -. Signed photo Ace au$ 45, -. Kisstory 1 or 2 for au$ 300, – and a beautiful tourjacket for au$ 750, – (!) There was no selling of any bootleg merchandise outside the venue.
So, after this concert and a good rest I left Adelaide on monday april 2 and went with a bus to Melbourne where I early tuesday morning arrived
KISS Live In Melbourne, April 3, 4 & 5th:
After I had checked in at my hostel I went to a music shop, called Gashlight. I’ve heard from it through internet. I had found the shop quickly and they had a giant KISS stand-up in their window. The shop sold a lot of KISS-stuff, like cd’s, dvd’s, video’s, posters, stickers, T-shirts and even the 24" Love Gun dolls. When the owner heard that I was from Holland and saw them in Adelaide, he welcomed me with open arms. He wanted everything to know about the concert in Adelaide. So I told him and other fans my story. When I was finished I got some free posters & stickers. Also I met a fan who knew in what hotel KISS stayed. He told me that he followed them from the airport and that they where in the Park Hyatt hotel, just a copple of minutes from this shop. So I decided to check the place out. When I arrived at the hotel there wasn’t anything to see, no fans no KISS. I decided to come back tonight after the concert. I left to find the venue, so that I know where it is. When I arrived at the Rod Laver Arena, they were just prepare the merchandise for display in a small stand outside the arena. When I walked to the other side I saw a big door open and that they were building up the stage. I tried to get in but the secrurity didn’t let me in. But I could watch from a little distance and I filmed the hole thing for a little time. Trucks came in and out and I saw the testing of the lights. I also picked up my tickets and met some fans. Around 4 p.m. I went back to the hostel, got diner and around 7 p.m. I was back at the arena. I brought my filmcamera with me ’cause I saw that at the concert in Adelaide there wasn’t any secrurity or searching in your bags for anything. This time it was the same and I had my camera with me. First I went to the merchandise stand, but there wasn’t nothing new. Only the venue T-shirts of Melbourne were for sale. I went into the hall, after the Screaming Yets were done it was time for KISS. I had my camera ready and as soon the lights went out I started to film. I got Detroit Rock City & Deuce. After Paul said welcome Melbourne and Shout It Out Loud started I saw 5 secrurity guy’s coming to my direction. I quickly put down my camera in my bag and when I was done a secrurity guy sits down next to me and stayed there for 10 minutes. He didn’t say anything, only talking through his phone with the other guy’s. Finally he went and I could breath again. I knew I had all the luck in the world that they didn’t catch me. After all I had about 15 minutes of KISS live in Melbourne. The venue was almost sold out and KISS rocked! They had the same setlist. During the medley they played; Parasite, She, Makin’ Love & New York Groove.
They played for around 135 minutes and maked a lot of jokes on stage. After the show there was a lot of KISS-music outside. A radio station was there with a car and a big speaker on it. Also there was a guy who sold some bootleg buttons.
I decided to go to the hotel and try to figure out of KISS indeed stayed there. When I arrived around 1 a.m. there were around 15 fans outside. I met fans from Brazil, New Zealand, USA & some Australian fans. We talked about the show and than we tried to get in the hotel, but we weren’t allowed by the staff from the hotel. Than we heard someone say that Gene Simmons was in the lobby. We went to the front of the hotel, looked through the windows and than I saw Gene walking through the lobby. All of the fans screamed Gene, Gene, Gene, waved but Gene didn’t come outside. After a while we saw Gene getting into a car and we tried again to come close by, but again we were not allowed. Than the car with Gene in it comes slowly besides us and Gene waved to us, the car didn’t stop. It was around 3 a.m. and I was tired and went back to the hostel.
April 4th, The Second Day:
April 4th, the second day. After some sightseeing in Melbourne city I went around 3 p.m. to the Park Hyatt hotel, met the same fans as last night and talked a lot about KISS. At 4 o’clock I saw Gene & Paul coming out of the hotel, getting into a car.
Again we couldn’t came close by. A half hour later Eric came out, got into a car and went to the arena for the soundcheck. Around 5 p.m. Ace came out the hotel, got into the car and went of to the arena too. Me and some fans got something to eat and went to the arena. Before KISS started there was a KISS-wedding on stage. This was cool to watch. This second show in Melbourne was complete sold out.
This second show in Melbourne was complete sold out. When KISS started the fans went nuts and the band kicked ass. This night was the best show. KISS really get into it, caused by the great response of the fans.
From the start to the end of the show it was party time! Paul played Shandi and during the medley they played; New York Groove, She, Makin’ Love & Parasite. Also there came 2 fans on stage, the first one didn’t want to come off the stage and the secrurity guy’s chased him. Finally they got him. A copple of seconds later the second guy came on stage. Again secrurity guy’s came on stage to get him, but Gene stoped them and put his arms around the fan, wishper something in his ear (something like; you’re fucked when you’re backstage with the secrurity?) Than Paul said; the next person who try to get up here – We will kick his ass! A huge cheer from the audience was the responce. During Rock & Roll All Night Ace’s spinning firework on his guitar didn’t work. Also his lift didn’t went up, he stood there like he was saying to the lift; come up now, go up. After all this was a great show.
April 5th, Last Day, Oh, Oh, Oh!
This day I arrived around 3:30 p.m. at the hotel. First I saw Eric & Paul coming out of the hotel, getting into the car again and drive than slowly from the hotel to the main road. A little bit later Gene did the same. Ace I didn’t see this time. Me and some fans went to the pizza hut and a funn time there. We arrived at the arena around 8:15 p.m. This time the venue wasn’t not sold out. I knew this was probely for me the last time that I saw them live. Beeing a KISS-fan for almost 23 years now I was moved by this thought. KISS gave another great show. This time Paul thanks the fans that they could play 3 times in Melbourne. Paul didn’t shoot T-shirts this time, I think they were sold out. During Paul solo he played Shandi again and Forever! That was really cool to hear this song live. During the medley they played; New York Groove, Goin’ Blind, Parasite, New York Groove (again) Strutter, Rocket Ride & Mr. Speed
The fans went completly crazy, this was so cool to here these songs!
Than after Rock And Roll All Night and almost 160 minutes it was al over…..or not?
Outside, we park hyatt die-hard KISS-fans, meet eachother and decided to go one more time to the hotel. When we arrived a fan called us from inside the hotel. He shouted that we could come in the hotel. I was amazed, was this really true? Yes it was! When I walked in the lobby there were around 40 fans inside, sitting in chairs or just standing. They had all something with them to sign. I couldn’t believe that we finally were allowed to get in. Than I saw Tommy Thayer, I walked up to him and asked if he could KISS something to sign for me and told him that I was from Holland. He told me that Gene probely will come to the lobby in a short time. If we are cool & quiet he’ll maybe sign something for us. Tommy said; I can’t promise anything for you, but I do my best. 15 minutes later came Gene, with a girl & tommy, into the lobby and walked slowly to the allivator. Gene was almost surrounded by fans including me. When I tried to give him my ticket to sign Tommy noticed me and said to Gene; This is the guy from Holland. Gene Stopped walking and looked to me and said; You’re from Holland? From Scheveningen? I said; About 150 miles from Schevingen yeah. Gene said; Did you come all the way to see us here? I said; Yeah Gene, I’m a big fan. Gene said; That’s cool, did you like the show? I said; Yeah, I loved it. Gene said; Cool, than he take my ticket, signed it and give it with a big smile back to me!
Gene signing my concert ticket!
Than he walked agian to the allivator and than he was gone. I couldn’t believe it! Man, I met Gene, face to face! When I was down to earth again I’ve to wait for the other members. Around 2:45 a.m. Ace came out the restaurant, but walked right to the allivator. So I dind’t got the chance to meet him. Around 3:30 a.m. Tommy came into the lobby and said to us than soon Eric & Paul will be coming. 10 minutes later Eric came with a girl into the lobby, a little later Paul and a girl came also. They walked to the exit of the hotel and I thought they’ll leave, but they only said goodbye to the girls and after a copple of minutes they came back.
Paul & Eric walking in the hotel lobby…
Again I tried to get my tickets sign. The first to sign my ticket was Eric…
Eric just before he signed my ticket…
And a little bit later I also got my ticket signed by Paul,
Paul in the lobby of the hotel and here’s he waving at me, just before he signed my ticket!
After Paul signed my ticket he said "Thanks for coming to see us" .
I couln’t believe it! Finally I’ve met Gene, Paul & Eric on the last night in Melbourne! My wish had come true! This was a beautifull farewell from KISS to me!
Around 4:30 a.m. we’re leaving the hotel knowing that my bus, back to Adelaide, will leave at 8:30 a.m. But I didn’t care, I had the time of my life here down under. At last I want to say thanks to Gene, Paul & Eric for making my wish come true. Also a special thanks to Tommy Thayer, who remembered me & helped me out. At last thanks to all the fans I have met during my concerts in Adelaide & Melbourne, James, Louis, Terry, Donna & Brett from Radio Active and all the fans I forgot.
After 6 years it’s like it all happened yesterday, the trip to Australia, my 4 KISS shows and my meeting with Gene, Paul, Eric & Tommy. I’ll never forget it!!! A Perfect Farewell!
After 6 searching I finally found a (bootleg) CD & DVD from one of these Melbourne shows and they’re bringing back good memories to me…
WANTED!!!: I’m looking for photo’s from the signing at the Park Hyatt hotel in Melbourne, on the third night. I weared a black sweather with a print of the Psycho Circus CD-cover and a baseballcap from the farewell tour.
If you’ve any pics from this night please send me a email @ firstname.lastname@example.org
If it’s possible include a scan of the photo’s to the mail, so I can check out if I on the photo’s. If I on it I will order it! .
This report is also published in a issue of the Dutch KISS Revenge Magazine!!!