KISS went through most of the 1980s in a haze. They had gone from being revolutionary in the 1970s to almost following the pack in the 80s. The result was the lowest points in their career, with albums that sometimes barely deserved the KISS logo. KISS took revenge on the critics that had written them off with a rip roaring classic.
The album opens with the most wonderful surprise - a Gene Simmons special; growling, bad tempered, heavy metal, Unholy signals the return to form of the Demon. He is equally superb on tracks such as Domino and Thou Shalt Not. Paul Stanley is also in fine form with I Just Wanna and Take it Off being his finest contributions. They band also cover (with a few of their own adjustments) the Argent song God Gave Rock and Roll to You and produce one of the greatest rock anthems of all time. Ironically it was the first KISS song I ever heard when I saw Bill and Ted's Bogus Journey about 15 years ago. I loved the song then but had no idea it was the very beginning of an obcession about the men behind it. The rest of the album is also strong, with even the 'filler' songs making the grade. It also contains a fitting tribute to Eric Carr, KISS drummer of 11 years who tragically died of cancer in the lead up to the album (Eric Singer replaced him on drums) with a monstrous drum solo - Carr Jam '81 - Jon Bonham eat your heart out! With classics a plenty, Gene back to his best and Bruce Kulick (the lead guitarist since 1984) peaking, it all adds up to a fantastic record.
It is unfortunate that after KISS had revived themselves commercially in the 1980s, their best album in ten years saw interest in the band wane. As with their debut album and Creatures of the Night, it was not a huge seller, but don't let that fool you, it's one of their absolute best.