KISS bassist/vocalist Gene Simmons spoke to Matt Pinfield of 95.5 KLOS's "New & Approved" show about the band's upcoming second Las Vegas residency, which will kick off at the end of the year. The legendary rockers' engagement at Zappos Theater at Planet Hollywood will launch the last week of December.
Regarding what fans can expect to see this time around, Gene said: "The plus side of Vegas is that now, the culture of Vegas has changed so that it welcomes punk bands and rap and all kinds of stuff and lets them do their art their way, instead of saying that Vegas is about showgirls and magicians and stuff like that. Yes, it is, but it's also about other artists, comedians and people coming in — Mike Tyson had a talk show there; he's a friend. If they don't tell you what the rules are, you make the rules. You can come in and do it your way. So that's exactly what we're gonna do. We're gonna be KISS, 'cause that's all we know how to do. THE [ROLLING] STONES already exist, and [LED] ZEPPELIN already existed, so doing second best isn't a good idea. But we can be the best KISS, and that's what we're gonna do when we come in and play New Year's Eve right there at Planet Hollywood, and we're gonna do a bunch of shows through January and February. And our good friends the fire department promised to sort of extend the limits of what you can do indoors, and it's gonna be safe. If you're an asshole and don't wanna wear a mask and stay safe and do that stuff, you're not gonna be allowed in. We wanna keep everybody safe, responsible and have the best party on earth."
The 12 shows are as follows:
December 2021: 29, 31
January 2022: 1, 19, 21, 22, 26, 28, 29
February 2022: 2, 4, 5
The legendary rockers previously set up shop in Sin City in November 2014 at The Joint at Hard Rock Hotel And Casino. The nine-show run was captured for the "Kiss Rocks Vegas" DVD and Blu-ray set, which arrived in August 2016.
Asked by Rolling Stone what brought KISS back to Las Vegas for another residency, Simmons said: "There are matters of the heart and then there are matters of the pocket and it's nice when they both converge. So it's a very nice payday. They pay well and that's reason enough. But it's also easier for the band because you don't have the wear and tear of traveling."
As for what kind of production the residency will have and whether it will be scaled down or on par with the touring show, Gene said: "The answer is yes to both, because when we play stadiums around the world, those shows are like Transformers. You can make them as big as you want. KISS's shows have been talked about for longer than you've been alive. Anything that's got a roof on it, we have to scale back the pyro or we'll blow the roof off, literally. But we are planning lots of surprises for Vegas, which nobody's seen yet. We're in the middle of putting that together."
KISS is in the middle of its "End Of The Road" farewell tour, which was originally scheduled to conclude on July 17, 2021 in New York City but is now expected to last well into 2022.
KISS's current lineup consists of original members Simmons and Paul Stanley (guitar, vocals), alongside later band additions, guitarist Tommy Thayer (since 2002) and drummer Eric Singer (on and off since 1991).
Formed in 1973 by Stanley, Simmons, drummer Peter Criss and lead guitarist Ace Frehley, KISS staged its first "farewell" tour in 2000, the last to feature the group's original lineup.