Readers' Poll: The 10 Best Metal/Hard Rock Albums of the 1970sPicks include Black Sabbath's 'Master of Reality' and Aerosmith's 'Rocks'
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8. Kiss, 'Alive'
Kiss had a big problem in 1975. They'd been on the road non-stop for two years and were a killer live band, but they never managed to capture that energy on a record. Their first three albums failed to reach a mass audience. The obvious answer was to cut a live album, so they let the tapes roll during shows in Ohio, New Jersey, Michigan and Iowa. The plan worked. Alive! hit the top 10 on the Billboard album charts and remained a best-seller for years. Within months, Kiss were packing arenas all over the country. The debate rages over how much of Kiss is actually live and how much is the product of studio overdubbing, but it hardly matters. Every song is better than its studio version.