Gene Simmons has called out U2 and the Rolling Stones for inauthentic live performances.
Last year the KISS bassist famously declared that “rock is finally dead”, and now he’s getting specific, lashing out at bands like U2 and the Rolling Stones for lip syncing and using backing tracks in their live performances.
“I have a problem when you charge $100 to see a live show and the artist uses backing tracks,” he says, via the NME. “It’s like the ingredients in food, if the first ingredient on the label is sugar that’s at least honest.”
And he thinks warnings should appear on tickets to events, stating that what fans are hearing might not be 100% authentic.
“It should be on every ticket,” he adds, “you’re paying $100, 30 to 50 per cent of the show is [on] backing tracks and they’ll sing sometimes, sometimes they’ll lip synch. At least be honest. It’s not about backing tracks, it’s about dishonesty.”
He then named names. And was quick to point out what you hear at a KISS show is the result of four dudes rocking out on stage.
“There’s nobody with a synthesizer on our stage, there’s no samples on the drums, there’s nothing,” Simmons says. “There’s very few bands who do that now — AC/DC, Metallica, us. I can’t even say that about U2 or the Stones. There’s very few bands who don’t use [backing] tracks.”
He probably won’t be KISS and making up with Bono anytime soon.