Glam-rock icons Kiss have always treated their flamboyant costumes and makeup like “battle gear,” but they’ve taken a more subtle and sleek approach by backing John Varvatos suits. In a new video for the designer’s Spring/Summer 2014 campaign, the band deliver an intimate performance for 200 unsuspecting fans at Varvatos’ boutique, the former home of CBGB’s.
The three-minute clip finds Kiss performing two classics, “Rock & Roll All Nite” and “C’mon and Love Me,” while sporting their stylish new duds. In between the performance footage, bassist Gene Simmons and guitarist Paul Stanley dish out some reliably quotable lines about rock music, their critics and the importance of fashion in their careers.
“Any time somebody suits up, whether it’s for a Super Bowl, whether it’s for the World Series, whether it’s for battle, you’re getting ready to go to a war of sorts,” says Stanley, sounding like a glammy version of Barney from How I Met Your Mother. “You want to win. This is my battle gear; this is my war paint. I go up there to have a great time, but I’m dead serious, with all guns loaded and a six-string guitar that can kill.”
“I probably have a loose screw someplace in my head,” says Simmons in his trademark deadpan. “Otherwise I wouldn’t be wearing more makeup and high heels than your mommy. Boy, do I look good!”
Last month, Kiss were finally inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. The band’s superfans are pining for a reunion of the classic lineup (with drummer Peter Criss and guitarist Ace Frehley), and the chances are good: Last month, Frehley told Rolling Stone he would “consider a Kiss reunion if it was presented in the proper way.” Simmons is also open to the reunion, saying Criss and Frehley “were equally important in the formation of the band.”