Love Gun

Last updated
Love Gun
Love gun cover.jpg
Studio album by
ReleasedJune 30, 1977
RecordedMay 1977
Studio Record Plant Studios, New York City
Label Casablanca
Kiss chronology
Rock and Roll Over
Love Gun
Alive II
Singles from Love Gun
  1. "Christine Sixteen"
    Released: June 1, 1977
  2. "Love Gun"
    Released: July 31, 1977
Professional ratings
Review scores
AllMusic Star full.svgStar full.svgStar full.svgStar full.svgStar half.svg [1]
Blender Star full.svgStar full.svgStar full.svgStar full.svgStar half.svg [2]
Pitchfork (9.2/10) [3]
Rolling Stone Star full.svgStar full.svgStar full.svgStar half.svgStar empty.svg [4]

Love Gun is the sixth studio album by American hard rock band Kiss, released on June 30, 1977. [1] Casablanca Record and FilmWorks shipped 1,000,000 copies of the album on this date. The album was remastered in 1997 and again in 2014. It was their first album to feature a lead vocal performance from Ace Frehley, making it the first Kiss album to feature lead vocal performances from all four band members. It was also the last studio album to feature Peter Criss on every song, as he was replaced by session drummer Anton Fig for all but one song on 1979's Dynasty . [5] Love Gun was certified platinum on June 30, 1977.

United States Federal republic in North America

The United States of America (USA), commonly known as the United States or America, is a country comprising 50 states, a federal district, five major self-governing territories, and various possessions. At 3.8 million square miles, the United States is the world's third or fourth largest country by total area and is slightly smaller than the entire continent of Europe's 3.9 million square miles. With a population of more than 327 million people, the U.S. is the third most populous country. The capital is Washington, D.C., and the most populous city is New York City. Forty-eight states and the capital's federal district are contiguous in North America between Canada and Mexico. The State of Alaska is in the northwest corner of North America, bordered by Canada to the east and across the Bering Strait from Russia to the west. The State of Hawaii is an archipelago in the mid-Pacific Ocean. The U.S. territories are scattered about the Pacific Ocean and the Caribbean Sea, stretching across nine official time zones. The extremely diverse geography, climate, and wildlife of the United States make it one of the world's 17 megadiverse countries.

Hard rock is a loosely defined subgenre of rock music that began in the mid-1960s, with the garage, psychedelic and blues rock movements. It is typified by a heavy use of aggressive vocals, distorted electric guitars, bass guitar, drums, and often accompanied with keyboards.

Kiss (band) American band

Kiss is an American rock band formed in New York City in January 1973 by Paul Stanley, Gene Simmons, Peter Criss, and Ace Frehley. Well known for its members' face paint and stage outfits, the group rose to prominence in the mid-to-late 1970s with their elaborate live performances, which featured fire breathing, blood-spitting, smoking guitars, shooting rockets, levitating drum kits, and pyrotechnics. The band has gone through several lineup changes, with Stanley and Simmons the only remaining original members. The original and best-known lineup consisted of Stanley, Simmons, Frehley, and Criss.



A cardboard "Love Gun" (assembly required) was included inside the album, [6] along with a Kiss merchandise order form. [7] Before Love Gun was completed, a Gallup poll indicated that Kiss was the most popular band in the United States, beating Aerosmith, Led Zeppelin and the Eagles. On August 26, 27, and 28, 1977, Kiss recorded three shows at the LA Forum for their next release, the live album Alive II .

Aerosmith American rock band

Aerosmith is an American rock band formed in Boston, Massachusetts in 1970. The group consists of Steven Tyler, Joe Perry (guitar), Tom Hamilton (bass), Joey Kramer (drums), and Brad Whitford (guitar). Their style, which is rooted in blues-based hard rock, has come to also incorporate elements of pop rock, heavy metal, and rhythm and blues, and has inspired many subsequent rock artists. They are sometimes referred to as "the Bad Boys from Boston" and "America's Greatest Rock and Roll Band".

Led Zeppelin English rock band

Led Zeppelin were an English rock band formed in London in 1968. The group consisted of vocalist Robert Plant, guitarist Jimmy Page, bassist/keyboardist John Paul Jones and drummer John Bonham. Along with Black Sabbath and Deep Purple, the band's heavy, guitar-driven sound has led them to be cited as one of the originators of heavy metal. Their style drew from a wide variety of influences, including blues, psychedelia and folk music.

Eagles (band) American country rock band

The Eagles are an American rock band formed in Los Angeles in 1971. The founding members were Glenn Frey, Don Henley, Bernie Leadon and Randy Meisner. With five number-one singles, six number-one albums, six Grammy Awards, and five American Music Awards, the Eagles were one of the most successful musical acts of the 1970s. Their albums Their Greatest Hits (1971–1975) and Hotel California rank first and third, respectively, among the best-selling albums in the United States, with 38 million and 26 million album units in sales. The Eagles are one of the world's best-selling bands, having sold more than 100 million albums. They were ranked number 75 on Rolling Stone's 2004 list of the 100 Greatest Artists of All Time.

The album cover was painted by fantasy artist Ken Kelly, [8] who previously contributed the cover for 1976's Destroyer .

Ken W. Kelly is an American fantasy artist. Over his 30-year career, he has focused in particular on paintings in the sword and sorcery and heroic fantasy subgenres.

<i>Destroyer</i> (Kiss album) 1976 studio album by Kiss

Destroyer is the fourth studio album by American rock band Kiss, released on March 15, 1976 by Casablanca Records in the US. It was the third successive Kiss album to reach the top 40 in the US, as well as the first to chart in Germany and New Zealand. The album was certified gold by the RIAA on April 22, 1976, and platinum on November 11 of the same year, the first Kiss album to achieve platinum. The album marked a departure from the raw sound of the band's first three albums.


"I Stole Your Love"

Written by Paul Stanley, "I Stole Your Love" is in the same vein as songs like "Makin' Love" and "C'mon and Love Me". Stanley has said that this song was influenced by Deep Purple's "Burn". [9]

Deep Purple English rock band

Deep Purple are an English rock band formed in Hertford in 1968. The band is considered to be among the pioneers of heavy metal and modern hard rock, although their musical approach changed over the years. Originally formed as a progressive rock band, the band shifted to a heavier sound in 1970. Deep Purple, together with Led Zeppelin and Black Sabbath, have been referred to as the "unholy trinity of British hard rock and heavy metal in the early to mid-seventies". They were listed in the 1975 Guinness Book of World Records as "the globe's loudest band" for a 1972 concert at London's Rainbow Theatre, and have sold over 100 million copies of their albums worldwide.

Burn (Deep Purple song) 1974 song by Deep Purple

"Burn" is a song by British rock band Deep Purple. Its riff is similar to the 1924 song "Fascinating Rhythm". It was released on the album of the same name in 1974, and was the first song by the Mark III lineup. The song remained the band's concert opener for the next two years, taking over from "Highway Star". It opened Deep Purple's set on the California Jam two months after its release, on 6 April 1974.

"Christine Sixteen"

Then-unknown guitarist Eddie and drummer Alex Van Halen played on the demo of this song, as well as "Got Love for Sale". [10] The lyrics have a similar theme to "Goin' Blind" from Hotter Than Hell ; both songs involve older men falling in love with younger girls. Sampled by Tone Lōc on "Funky Cold Medina".

Eddie Van Halen Dutch-American rock musician

Edward Lodewijk Van Halen is a Dutch-American musician, songwriter, and producer. He is the main songwriter and founder—with brother and drummer Alex Van Halen, bassist Mark Stone, and singer David Lee Roth—of the American hard rock band Van Halen. In 2012, he was voted number one in a Guitar World magazine reader's poll for "The 100 Greatest Guitarists of All Time".

Alex Van Halen American musician

Alexander Arthur van Halen is a Dutch American musician who is the drummer and co-founder of the hard rock band Van Halen. The band was formed in 1974 by Alex Van Halen; his younger brother, Eddie Van Halen; David Lee Roth; and Michael Anthony. Warner Brothers signed the band in 1977, and its debut album was released in 1978. Alex and Eddie Van Halen are the only members of Van Halen who have been in the band throughout its existence.

"Goin' Blind" is a song by American hard rock band Kiss, written by Gene Simmons and Stephen Coronel; it is sometimes referred to as "Going Blind". The song originally appeared on the band's second album, 1974's Hotter Than Hell. The original working title for the song was "Little Lady".

"Shock Me"

The song was inspired by an event that took place during Kiss's Rock and Roll Over tour, when Ace Frehley suffered an electric shock. On December 12, 1976, Kiss performed a concert at the Lakeland Civic Center in Lakeland, Florida. During the opening number, Frehley touched an ungrounded metal staircase railing. He was knocked to the ground, and the concert was delayed for 30 minutes. The show was eventually completed, and Frehley claimed to have lost feeling in his hand for the remainder of the concert. [11]

<i>Rock and Roll Over</i> 1976 studio album by Kiss

Rock and Roll Over is the fifth studio album by American rock band Kiss, released in 1976. It was recorded at the Star Theatre, and in order to get the proper drum sound, Peter Criss recorded the drum tracks in a bathroom, communicating via video-link with the rest of the band. Criss' vocals are featured on the tracks "Baby Driver" and "Hard Luck Woman". Paul Stanley, who originally wanted the latter song to be sung by Rod Stewart, gave it to Criss, after Gene Simmons insisted Criss sing the song instead.

Lakeland, Florida City in Florida, United States

Lakeland is a city in Polk County, Florida, along Interstate 4 east of Tampa. The westernmost city in Polk County, it is part of the Tampa Bay Area. According to the 2018 U.S. Census Bureau estimate, the city had a population of 110,516. Lakeland is a principal city of the Lakeland–Winter Haven Metropolitan Statistical Area.

Ground (electricity) reference point in an electrical circuit from which voltages are measured

In electrical engineering, ground or earth is the reference point in an electrical circuit from which voltages are measured, a common return path for electric current, or a direct physical connection to the earth.

This was the first lead vocal that Frehley recorded. In his autobiography, he states that he originally intended for Simmons to sing the song, but the bassist encouraged Frehley to try it himself. Frehley recorded his lead vocal part while lying on the floor of the studio, because he claimed that this helped him reach the correct pitch.

"Tomorrow and Tonight"

The song was written to try to recapture the feeling of "Rock and Roll All Nite", but never reached the success of the aforementioned hit. A soundcheck recording of the song appears on Alive II . The song was never played live by the band until Kiss Kruise VII in November of 2017.

"Love Gun"

The title song has been played on every Kiss tour since its release. Stanley has cited it as one of his favorite Kiss songs. It was the first song that Stanley wrote, arranged and produced in its entirety. [12] The song shares many of its lyrics with "The Hunter", written by Booker T. & the M.G.'s, and recorded by Albert King, Ike and Tina Turner, Blue Cheer, and Free. In his autobiography Face the Music, Stanley acknowledges the derivation: "I stole the idea of a 'love gun' from Albert King's version of 'The Hunter,' which Zeppelin also nicked from for 'How Many More Times' on their first album." [13]

"Plaster Caster"

The song was inspired by Cynthia Plaster Caster, a former groupie famous for casting penises of famous rock musicians, [14] such as Jimi Hendrix, as well as breasts of female musicians. [15]

"Then She Kissed Me"

The song is one of several gender-reversed covers of the Crystals' 1963 single "Then He Kissed Me". [16]


Love Gun was remastered and reissued in 1997 as part of the Kiss Remasters series.

It was remastered and reissued again in a deluxe edition on October 28, 2014, with sleeve notes by Def Leppard's Joe Elliott and a second disc containing demos, live rarities and a 1977 interview with Gene Simmons. All tracks on the second disc were previously unreleased, bar the demo of "Reputation", which had appeared on the compilation Kiss 40 a few months earlier. The three live tracks were recorded at the Capital Centre in Landover, Maryland on December 20, 1977. "The potential for this to be the greatest deluxe edition of all time," noted music writer Geoff Barton, "is ruined by a too-clean remastering job – plus, if truth be told, a track that has dated badly in 'Christine Sixteen'." [17]

Track listing

Side one
No.TitleWriter(s)Lead vocalsLength
1."I Stole Your Love" Paul Stanley Stanley3:04
2."Christine Sixteen" Gene Simmons Simmons3:14
3."Got Love for Sale"SimmonsSimmons3:29
4."Shock Me" Ace Frehley Frehley3:49
5."Tomorrow and Tonight"StanleyStanley3:40
Side two
No.TitleWriter(s)Lead vocalsLength
6."Love Gun"StanleyStanley3:18
7."Hooligan" Peter Criss, Stan PenridgeCriss3:01
8."Almost Human"SimmonsSimmons2:49
9."Plaster Caster"SimmonsSimmons3:27
10."Then She Kissed Me" Jeff Barry, Ellie Greenwich, Phil Spector Stanley3:02


Additional personnel


Chart (1977)Peak
Australian Albums Chart [18] 13
Canadian Albums Chart [19] 3
German Albums Chart [20] 18
Japanese Albums Chart [21] 2
Swedish Albums Chart [20] 6
Swiss Albums Chart [20] 8
US Billboard 200 [22] 4


RegionCertification Certified units/Sales
United States (RIAA) [23] Platinum1,000,000^

^shipments figures based on certification alone

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