Music Video of the Day: All Hell’s Breakin’ Loose by KISS (1983, directed by Martin Kaban)


As you can tell from watching this video, this from the period of time where KISS was performing without their trademark makeup.  All Hell’s Breakin’ Loose was their second single from the album Lick It Up and, while the video itself got some airplay on MTV, the song failed to chart in the U.S.  Compared to their success in the 70s, KISS struggled through the 80s and the early 90s.  Taking off the makeup and essentially looking like every other hard rock band that was around at that time did not help.

Today, All Hell’s Breakin’ Loose is best-remembered as the song in which Paul Stanley raps.  The majority of the song was written by KISS’s then drummer, the late Eric Carr and Carr was initially not happy with the decision to have Stanley rap one of the verses.  However, later, Carr said that Stanley rapping was actually what the song needed to distinguish itself from the rest of the album and that the rap was probably the reason why All Hell’s Breakin’ Loose was eventually released as a single.

The video is a hard rock fantasy, with the members of KISS walking around a burned-out city and running into criminals, circus performers, and, of course, barely dressed women.  This was probably a video that KISS could only have made during the period when they weren’t wearing their makeup.  The Demon and the Starchild would have looked out-of-place wandering around the city but Gene Simmons, Paul Stanley, Eric Carr, and Vinny Vincent fit right in.

In retrospect, it’s hard not to be amused that, back in the 70s and 80s, so many parents groups viewed KISS as being a threat to young minds.  (There are people who still believe that KISS stands for Knights In Satan’s Service.)  I would guess that few of those concerned parents actually listened to any of the music that they were so concerned about.  Instead, they just saw songs with titles like All Hell’s Breakin’ Loose and jumped to their conclusions.

Enjoy!

A Movie A Day #143: The Bull of the West (1972, directed by Jerry Hopper and Paul Stanley)


Welcome to the American frontier.  The time is the 1880s and men and women everywhere are heading out west in search of their fortune.  While stowing away on a train, veteran cowboy Johnny Wade (Brian Keith) meets the naive Steve Hill (Gary Clarke) and becomes a mentor to the younger man.  Johnny teaches Steve how to shoot a gun and, when they get off the train at Medicine Bow, Wyoming, they get jobs working on the ranch of Georgia Price (Geraldine Brooks).  When Georgia and Johnny plot to overgraze the land, Steve must decide whether he’s with them or with a rival rancher, Judge Garth (Lee J. Cobb).

At the same time, Ben Justin (Charles Bronson) has arrived in town with his son, Will (Robert Random), and his new wife (Lois Nettleton).  Ben is determined to start his own ranch but, because of his taciturn and stubborn personality, he alienates the Cattleman’s Association, which led by Judge Garth and Bear Suchette (George Kennedy).  Will wants to help his father but Ben keeps pushing him away.  It’s up to Judge Garth’s foreman, the Virginian (James Drury), to bring the family together.

Just like The Meanest Men In The West, The Bull of the West was created by editing together footage from two unrelated episodes of The Virginian.  It works better for the Bull of the West because the two episodes had similar themes and the footage mixes together less awkwardly than it did in The Meanest Men In The West.  But Bull of the West is still just a TV show edited into a movie.  The main reason to see it is because of all the familiar western faces in the cast.  Along with Bronson, Keith, Cobb, and Kennedy, keep an eye out for Ben Johnson, DeForest Kelley, and Clu Gulager.