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Classic rockers don’t miss beat

‘Monster’ Kiss

Nearly 40 years after first slapping on the makeup, donning the costumes and changing forever the way a live concert is performed, Kiss can still bring it.

“Monster” is the caped crusaders’ 20th studio album, and one that fans of old school ’70s classic rock will be just as comfortable with as those who cut their teeth on later material.

It opens with a bang in “Hell or Hallelujah,” a fast-paced rocker that could be the band’s best concert opener since “I Stole Your Love,” way back in 1977 (though they put it in the middle of the set this summer).

Imagine a mash-up of “Helter Skelter” and Kiss’ 1992 track “Spit,” and you’ve got “Wall of Sound,” a dramatic, ground-pounder. “Freak” uses a grungier distorted sound to showcase the band’s long-standing philosophy of not caring what anyone else thinks of them. And “Back to the Stone Age” features Eric Singer’s pounding drums with a beat reminiscent of the Stones’ “Live With Me.”

Things bog down somewhat on tracks in the middle of the disc, but finish strong on “Last Chance.”

This album isn’t “Destroyer” or even “Love Gun,” but it’s still worth having.

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