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Dressed To Kill (1975) - Kiss - Everything about the album...

“If rock and roll delights you, then you only need to listen to Dressed To Kill to see for yourself! This record is like a breath of fresh air... And it's a pity that there are less and less of such records...»

Why was Kiss' third album targeted for success? The Story of Dressed to Kill (1975)…

Dressed to Kill is the third studio album by American hard rock band Kiss, released on March 18, 1975. An interesting fact, but at the time of the release of one of the most successful albums, the Kiss label was in financial difficulties ... Moreover: Casablanca could not afford to hire a professional producer, which is why all the reports about the album fell on the shoulders of the president himself - Neil Bogart.

Album's cover

Let's start today's conversation with the most attractive in the album "Dressed To Kill", with what immediately catches the eye ... Of course, we are talking about the cover.

The cover art for Kiss' third album suggests that the band has already achieved success. The extravagant make-up of the members, dressed in nice suits and expensive shoes... Yes, it was the only fact that these four bandmates were not young executives who had just killed some big mafioso, but invested all the money in mansions in Monte Carlo! However, looks can be deceiving...

Group Kiss
Group Kiss

In fact, despite the fact that Kiss had already managed to acquire fanatical fans in the states, their future - as a group - still hung in the balance ... And although both first albums were promising - neither the debut of the same name, nor the quickly released sequel called "Hotter Than Hell" didn't blow up the charts. And when the band posed for the cover of the upcoming "Dressed To Kill" in New York, drummer Peter Criss was the only member who actually owned the suit he wore to the photo shoot. However, the future of KISS wasn't all that bleak compared to, say, their label...

Kiss during a photo shoot for Dressed To Kill...
Kiss during a photo shoot for Dressed To Kill…

Recording and Difficulties...

At the dawn of 1975, Casablanca Records was at the cutting edge. So - their president Neil Bogart needed a hit record more than ever to somehow improve the current situation ... And as for Kiss - after releasing two studio albums in just 12 months, the group did not intend to release a third masterpiece so quickly ... However after Bogart himself insisted they return to New York's Electric Lady Studios, where he personally took over production duties, Kiss plunged desperately into work... Thus began the "Dressed To Kill" story.

Despite the circumstances, far from being the best, Kiss dug deep and… created their strongest set of songs to date!

Despite the entire album being a relatively short 30 minutes, it's just as stylish and crisply designed as the title suggests. Any one of the ten songs from "Dressed To Kill" could have been chosen as standalone singles...

Concept

As mentioned above, all the compositions from "Dressed To Kill" were great ... Yes, and remain so to this day! The album's opening 'Room Service', with its punchy Rolling Stones-style riffs and infectious choruses, set the tone... And the album's crisp, vibrating first side also features 'Rock Bottom', Gene Simmons' equally glamorous 'Two Timer' and a simple but Criss and Ace Frehley's insanely catchy "Getaway"!

Kiss on the streets of New York, 1976. Photo: Richard Corkery
Kiss on the streets of New York, 1976. Photo: Richard Corkery

The second half of "Dressed To Kill" is more packed with top-notch classics...

Fast and laid-back "Mon And Love Me", slow and tense "She" - after the release of the album, both of these compositions remained on the band's live performance hit sets for many years! Meanwhile, the epic "Roll And Roll All Nite" is arguably the father of all key Kiss anthems to this day... Its full chorus ("You'll drive us crazy / We'll drive you crazy!") is still one of the most seductive statements in the history of rock.

Release and success!

Casablanca Records released "Dressed to Kill" on March 19, 1975 as a matter of urgency. However, despite the obvious quality of the album, it was not the magic bullet that Neil Bogart was counting on ... Nevertheless, the record significantly raised the prestige of Kiss, reaching a rather respectable 32nd place on the Billboard 200! Thus, this release set the stage for their next release, a highly acclaimed live album called Alive! By the way: all of this provided the breakthrough that the band had been working so hard on... And while this album was soaring in the charts, Donna Summer's "Love To Love You Baby" went gold! So, the future of Casablanca Records suddenly took on a bright outline…

Primarily because it predates Alive!, the importance of Dressed To Kill in Kiss' wider history has since been somewhat overlooked... Nevertheless, this album remains one of the most colorful glam rock albums ever. band USA! And that's why it's largely commendable... For example, in 2003, a Pitchfork critic stated:

“Dressed To Kill will hit you with ten great tracks in just half an hour! No frills, no blunders, just glamorous Kiss in their prime…”

As a result, upon release, the album reached number 32 on the US Billboard 200, and in 1977 was certified by the RIAA! "C'mon and Love Me" and "Rock and Roll All Nite" were released as singles, but none of the songs went up in the charts ... True, the second composition, released on the single a little later as a live recording, reached the same #12 on the Billboard Hot 100! Over time, this track has become one of the most recognizable in the Kiss repertoire ...

Later, Rolling Stone wrote about "Dressed To Kill":

“If rock and roll fascinates you, then you will certainly like the work of Kiss - despite the routine and frequent repetitions, these guys make incredible rock! Kiss manages to masterfully move away from monochrome! Just listen to "Dressed To Kill" to see for yourself! This record is like a breath of fresh air... And it's a pity that there are less and less of such records...»

Reissue

In 1997, more than 20 years after its release, Dressed to Kill was re-released. Fans of the band who have the original vinyl version in their collection remember that there were long pauses between tracks ... Perhaps this was done to create the illusion that the sides were longer. After all, each lasted only 15 minutes!

Tracks

Now it's time to enjoy the tracks from "Dressed To Kill"...

room service

"Two Timers"

"Ladies in Waiting"

Getaway

"Rock Bottom"

"C'mon and Love Me"

"Anything for My Baby"

She

"Love Her All I Can"

"Rock and Roll All Nite"

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