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The Kiss Destroyer Tour of 1978 was a significant moment in the band's history, as it marked their emergence as one of the most popular and influential acts of the era. The tour began on March 18th, 1978, in Lakeland, Florida, and ran through December 16th of that year, with 89 shows in total.
The tour was named after the band's fifth studio album, "Destroyer," which had been released the previous year and had been a massive commercial success. The album featured some of Kiss's most iconic songs, including "Detroit Rock City," "Shout It Out Loud," and "Beth."
The stage setup for the Destroyer Tour was elaborate and impressive, featuring a massive drum kit that rose up from the stage, multiple platforms, and pyrotechnics. The band members themselves were decked out in their trademark makeup and costumes, with Gene Simmons as "The Demon," Paul Stanley as "The Starchild," Ace Frehley as "The Spaceman," and Peter Criss as "The Catman."
One of the most memorable moments of the tour came during the band's performance of "God of Thunder," when Simmons would fly over the crowd on a wire, breathing fire and spitting blood. This stunt became a signature part of Kiss's live shows and helped to cement their reputation as one of the most theatrical and visually stunning acts of the era.
The setlist for the Destroyer Tour was a mix of old favorites and newer material from the "Destroyer" album. In addition to the hits mentioned above, the band also performed songs like "King of the Night Time World," "Do You Love Me," and "Flaming Youth." The concerts were high-energy affairs, with the band members playing their instruments with ferocity and engaging in all manner of onstage antics.
Despite the success of the Destroyer Tour, it had its controversies. The band faced criticism from some quarters for their use of pyrotechnics and other special effects, which some felt were overly dangerous and contributed to a climate of excess in the world of rock music. In addition, there were rumors of tension between the band members, with some speculating that Frehley and Criss were unhappy with their roles in the group.
Nevertheless, the Destroyer Tour proved to be a massive success, both artistically and commercially. The band played to sold-out crowds throughout the country, and their reputation as one of the era's most exciting and dynamic live acts was firmly established. The tour helped to solidify Kiss's place in the pantheon of great rock bands and remains a fondly remembered moment in the history of the group.
In conclusion, the Kiss Destroyer Tour of 1978 was a defining moment in the band's history and helped to establish their reputation as one of the greatest live acts of all time. The elaborate stage setup, pyrotechnics, and theatricality of the show were groundbreaking for their time and helped to set the template for many other rock acts to follow. Though the tour was not without its controversies, it remains a fondly remembered moment in the history of Kiss and a testament to their enduring popularity and influence.