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Baker's Dozen

The Demon Advocates: Gene Simmons' Favourite Albums
Valerie Siebert , March 3rd, 2015 12:53

The Kiss man picks a giants-of-rock top 13 albums for Val Siebert (and finally gives drum machines the talking to they deserve)


Jeff Beck - Truth
The mythology is that Jimmy Page played on that, but it's clearly Jeff Beck all the way - that personality. The interesting way they recorded the tracks is that the entire band were in the studio at the same time. And Ronnie Wood on bass. I think Ronnie Wood is actually a better bass player than he is a guitar player. The bass playing on that record is just great! You can hear mistakes, but listen to what the bass does in 'Rock My Plimsoul', it goes completely against the drums, but it gives it like a slinky snake-like feel. From beginning to end you have this kind of jamming, drunken-keyboard-player-in-a-New-Orleans-whorehouse-upright-piano feel. It's the best vocal that Rod Stewart has ever done on that first record, I don't think he's ever equalled it. He ran out of songs to do, so he covered 'Greensleeves' instrumental, he just didn't have any more songs! 'Shapes Of Things' was a cover that he originally did with The Yardbirds and then did a version here, and tore. It. Up. Such a heavy, heavy band.

I remember seeing them live in New York City. The rest of the kids didn't understand, but I was just blown away. I remember it well, the opening band was the Crazy [World of] Arthur Brown. He came out in a mask with his head lit on fire. That was actually connected later to by fire-spitting in the band. I just thought, 'Well that's a good idea'. The thing you noticed that while everyone was drinking, flirting, talking or whatever, when Arthur Brown walked onstage with his head on fire, everyone stopped!