Kiss Destroyer is 40 years old today. To say this was a landmark album for me would be a massive understatement. Up until 1976 I was a young kid into the pop music of the day. In ’75 I had discovered a power pop band called The Raspberries (who I still love to this day). Their edgy power chords over harmonies made me take notice and it was the first real rock band I kind of embraced. But that only set the stage for the day I was walking home from Jr High at the age of 13 with my friend Peter and we passed the record store as we always did. Pete said he was going in to get a new album by a band called Kiss. I never heard of the band and followed him in to the store as he approached the “K” section and pulled out a copy of Rock & Roll Over. That album had just been released. But Peter said to me to get the previous one because that was great and he hadn’t heard R&R Over yet. So I did. And the previous album was of course Destroyer.

I took the album home that day, unwrapped it, dropped the needle and just looked at the cover. Game over! From the open to Detroit Rock City that second my life was changed. I became consumed with Kiss. It was all that mattered to me for a few years. My world was Kiss. Every part of my room was Kiss posters. Any other band was a threat to Kiss (remember, I was a kid! ha). I don’t know if it’s my favorite Kiss album. I get asked that a lot. There is really no one album from the original lineup I can say is a favorite. Too many great songs. But Destroyer was a massive leap forward for them and it is without question the album that set me on my path to discover, love, and support rock and metal my entire life. Happy 40th to an all time classic!

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  • Coredrum on

    My first Kiss album was Alive 2 in 1977…I was 7 and my mother bought it for me…I just saw the cover and the back with Simmons sweaty with blood all over his face…had to have it, not knowing what it was and my mom was cool enough to buy it for me…went back and bought everything they had a few years later…Destroyer was probably their most famous album, but I think the first album is their best…

    • Doug R. on

      For me, it’s always been a tossup between the first album, and Destroyer. Hotter Than Hell would be up there as well, if only the production was better.

    • Coredrum on

      True Doug R…if Hotter than Hell had better production it would be better received

  • Chris Bacchi on

    The coolest part is that Ezrin included the original Ace “Sweet Pain” solo.

  • Michael B on

    Destroyer, in my opinion, is Kiss’s best album.

    It was my first Kiss album as well, and still is today, one of my favorite albums of all time. It’s also one of the best album covers of all time.

  • Charles Clinchot on

    My first exposure to Kiss was Alive at fourteen my brothers friend gave it to him ( ironically his name was Eddie Kramer) my brother wasn’t impressed but I was Destroyer was the first rock album I bought and my favored Kiss album and on of my top 5 off all time with God of Thunder being my favoret Kiss song
    From there led me to AC/DC Aerosmith and later Van Halen and Iorn Maiden and another side of my personality punk would lead me to some new wave music of 80’s I could listen to Blondie one moment then Slayer the next but I classify me I’m a metal head and feeling old right now for the moment gees been 40 years!

  • Mr. Rock And Roll on

    In Spring ’76 my older sister was a member of the Columbia House record and tape club. The selection of the month was Destroyer. She forgot to send in a note of refusal for it, and it was automatically sent to her. Just my luck! I was 7 at the time. I wanted to know: Is this a comic book record? Are they girls? THAT guy on the left can’t be…his chest is hairy! I fell in love with Gene right away. How does he walk on those dragons? The teeth will break! The mind of a 7 year old in 1976. I spent many a day sneaking into my sister’s room to just stare at the cover. Finally, the big day came: Mom and dad were going shopping, and big sis gets to use the family hi-fi! The car crash. The screaming little children. Shout it out louuuuuuuuud!! Flaming youth WILL set the world ON FIRE! Finally, big sis had had enough of me sneaking into her room and gave it to me. Best present ever! Played that record until it was white. 40 years later, I still love it as my fave Kiss record, and it still gives me goosebumps. It’s my go-to album when I wanna party, when I need to be picked up when I’m down. Bob Ezrin is a genius. KISS hit it out of the park with Destroyer.

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