KISS – Destroyer

KISS - Destroyer


Release date: March 15, 1976

User Review
0/10 (0 votes)

70s Hard Rock band Kiss, maybe known primarily to the masses as the guys in the costumes and makeup, have built careers spanning most of their lives playing music that is memorable; that fits snuggly into music history. Perhaps this cannot be more evident than in the case of Destroyer, the band’s fourth studio release in 1976, which came upon the heels of their live album entitled Alive! in 1975. The band’s first three albums met with mild success, and then they hit pay dirt with Alive!. The pressure to follow up with something else that would be equal to the success of Alive! would likely be felt by not only the band, but their label, Casablanca, as well. Destroyer would go on to both meet and exceed this need for studio success.

Bob Ezrin, noted for Alice Cooper fame, was responsible for a great portion of the accomplishments and accolades of Destroyer from the business end of things. The in-studio production Ezrin brought to the table helped to create a more polished, new, and improved product in Kiss. Released in March of ‘76, Destroyer went gold in April and then platinum in November. Even though gold honors seemed to come quickly, the reviews for Destroyer were not always raving. One review from Rolling Stone in ‘76 indicated that Destroyer contained, “bloated ballads, pedestrian drumming, and lackluster performances.” (Rolling Stone)

Was it genius or accident that “Beth”, the fourth released single off of Destroyer, was included as the B side of “God of Thunder”? Genius is more likely the answer. Without a doubt, “Beth”, a ballad, recruited a whole new audience of eager listeners for the powerful foursome, and showed the more human side of Kiss, which was essential after hearing songs like “God Of Thunder”, which tell the story of robbing one of “your virgin soul”. The two other singles released were “Flaming Youth”, an anthem of rebellion, and “Do You Love Me”, a song which begs the very question, without all the fame and materialistic “things”, do you love me? These are songs that Melodic Hard Rock enthusiasts will certainly appreciate.

Other songs on this compilation include, “Great Expectations”, “Sweet Pain”, “Shout It Out Loud”, and “Detroit Rock City” — a song beloved by concert goers for literally decades. Powerful, trademark Kiss sound is delivered on Destroyer, still none of the singles would be as well received as “Beth”, which made Kiss more “radio ready”. Was “Beth” single-handedly responsible for what is known as the power ballad today? Possibly. At the very least, Destroyer was a great contributor to music in that it showed how important range in music can be. The addition of “Beth” on the album sparked interest from people that would not otherwise have bothered to listen. This single would also set the pace for many bands that would take the walk toward gold, platinum or any type of Metal success in the 80s. The power ballad had arrived!

Kiss’ Destroyer is definitely one for any solid Hard Rock/Metal collection!


  • Justine Bevan

    Justin was a reviewer and interviewer here at Metal Express Radio, based in New Jersey, USA. She loves KISS and became a KISS Army member at the age of 6. She started playing drums when she was 13 and taught herself by ear, then later learned how to read music. Her musical tastes expanded even further after she started playing drums and began listening to everything from Metallica to Queensrÿche to 70s based Southern Rock. She is also a big fan of what are known as "hair bands", or Melodic Rock/Melodic Metal. She was a music major in college (the first time around). Justin wrote for several publications in the 80s and 90s, including Hit Parader and Faces.

    View all posts

Be the first to comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.


This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.

The reCAPTCHA verification period has expired. Please reload the page.