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TOP 100 REVIEWERon July 31, 2007
Animalize is definatly KISS`s heaviest album,thunderous drums, electrifying solos and guitars are all over the place(or album).After taking off the makeup on the previous year(1983)with the "Lick It Up" album,they had a lot of sucess as it reached platinum(and up),something they had not done since 1979`s "Dynasty".Animalize receveid a very warm welcomed as within weeks it reached platinum status.Yet the situation wasn`t all that great as Gene went to do his "Runnaway" movie and did not contribute a whole lot to the album,his material here really ain`t terrific and he can do better than that.Also Mark St-John who played lead guitar on the album,replacing Vinnie Vincent would only be part of KISS for "Animalize".

Despite all that,Animalize did well on the charts,is KISS`s heaviest album and one of the best albums they did during the 80s.Paul Stanley did most of the album,without Paul there wouldn`t have been an album at all.Paul carried on when Gene wasn`t there.Paul`s songs are the best of the album,Gene on the other hand didn`t do any memorable songs on this one and only played on his songs.

Some memorable songs on the albums are "Heaven`s On Fire","Trills In The Night","Under The Gun","Ive Had Enough(Into The Fire)",plenty of heavy material.If you only like heavy stuff this album`s for you.To any good side there`s a bad side,they are also fillers on Animalize wich are the Gene songs."Burn Bitch Burn" and "Muder In High Heels" aren`t exactly what i would call "classic",lucky for us Paul was there.

As i said,their heaviest album(until Revenge in 1992),great playing and album.Not much else to say its pretty good and its another great addition to your KISS collection,or simply album collection if you aren`t KISS fan.If you like this one check out "Creatures Of The Night" and "Revenge".
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on August 15, 2003
Animalize was the last of the trio of great heavy metal albums that Kiss produced in the '80s following Creatures Of The Night and Lick It Up. While the album is strong and certainly one of their heaviest, their songwriting slipped a little bit with the departure of guitarist Vinnie Vincent.
This is the first album when Kiss became more Paul Stanley's band mainly because Gene Simmons was concentrating on outside products like acting and producing other bands like Keel and Black N' Blue. Paul's songs are clearly the stronger tracks here, whether it's heavier tracks like "Under The Gun" and "I've Had Enough (Into The Fire)" or more radio-friendly tunes like "Thrills In The Night" and the excellent hit single "Heaven's On Fire". Gene Simmons does contribute a couple strong tunes with "Murder In High Heels" and "Lonely Is The Hunter". Other tracks like "While The City Sleeps" are decent, but owe more to the excellent guitar playing of Mark St. John than the songs themselves. St. John's guitar playing clearly resembles the '80s shredding guitar era. However, his playing complements the heavier songs very well. Eric Carr's drumming continues to impress, particularly on "Under The Gun" and "I've Had Enough (Into The Fire)". This would be their last strong album until 1992's "Revenge", which ironically contains a few songs co-written with Vinnie Vincent. Recommended to fans of Kiss' heavier work.
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on May 8, 2002
'Animalize' was a huge record for KISS and a huger tour. Whatever interest they rediscovered taking their makeup off for the 'Lick It Up' record was solidified with this record and tour. KISS was back on top and riding a crest of pop metal to a new fan base.
Now is 'Animalize' a great record? Not especially. Parts of it are. 'Animalize' suffers most from Gene Simmons clearly viewing the album as a secondary project to what else he was doing at the time. This put the pressure of the record on Paul Stanley and, frankly, Paul, for his part, delivered. From the mega hit 'Heaven's On Fire,' to a ballsy rocker like 'I've Had Enough' to the powerhouse 'Thrills In the Night' Paul bats 1000 on this record. Unfortunately Gene doesn't deliver at all. His songs are childish and completely forgettable and they drag this album down into the muck.
Paul's top notch production also helps bring the album up, but, in the end, 'Animalize' is a record with three decent songs but nothing landmark. On the road, 'Animalize' was great business and put KISS back onto the map as arena headliners to be reckoned with.
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on November 15, 2001
Album #19 from KISS, Animalize, is definitely their heaviest. Neither Creatures Of The Night nor Revenge have anything on this metal master work from a line-up that sadly, only lasted on this album alone.
From the first, Mark St. John's ferocious, no compromise guitar assaults the audial senses with "I've Had Enough (Into The Fire)", and with the first verses sung by Paul Stanley, I knew this was going to be the ne plus ultra of KISS the year I got into them. That was back in 1989, five years before this album was released, and eleven years have not dimmed the vitality of this classic album an iota! It's albums like this that bring to mind the phrase, "metal up your a**".
Just when the listener thinks he/she can take a breath, "Heaven's On Fire" comes on and takes the listener to metal heaven. That epitome of what KISS is about is followed by "Burn Bitch Burn," equally uncompromising, especially as this is Gene Simmons' first song on Animalize. put your log in your fireplace" needs no further interpretation.
"Get All You Can Take" is one of those songs that embodies the KISS philosophy--work hard, so play hard, which they most definitely do. Or did.
Not all the songs have the ferocity of the first three songs. The mid-paced "Lonely Is The Hunter", for example, has a menacing undertone, thanks to Gene's vocals. And "Thrills Of The Night", about the double-life of a woman doing the usual 9-5 routine by day, and who knows what at night, was co-written by Jean Beauvoir, the mohawked African-American rocker who did "Feel The Heat" on the Cobra soundtrack. However, let me say that there is absolutely NO filler on this album. Period.
I will reiterate here that Mark St. John is what makes Animalize the classic it is. That blistering guitar solo in "I've Had Enough" is evidence enough of that.
I read in a magazine that an hour before Paul Stanley was to take the master tapes of this album to the label, he changed his mind and remixed the entire album. Brilliant move, Paul!
KISS's hardest album happens to be their best one. The only things that I wonder now is, what would KISS have been like had Mark St. John recovered from his illness? Just imagine what Asylum and Crazy Nights, themselves worthy offerings from the foursome, would have sounded like with him as the axeman!
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on January 16, 2001
Animalize is a satisfying release from Kiss. I remember first getting the cassette of it many years ago. Now that I have the CD, I still like to listen to Animalize from time to time. The disc is in a straight-ahead hard rock musical direction. There's a total of nine songs. The musicianship, songwriting, and production are fulfilling. All of the tracks are straightforward hard rockers. There are no ballads included. I consider all of the tunes to be listenable and energetic. Paul Stanley and Gene Simmons both do well with the vocals. Stanley handles the vocals on five songs, and Simmons sings on four of the others. The tracks that I enjoy the most are "Heaven's on Fire," "Burn Bitch Burn," and "Thrills in the Night." The aspect of "Heaven's on Fire" that I like the best is the chorus. "Burn Bitch Burn" is a brisk, hard-hitting tune that features cool vocals from Simmons and an infectious main guitar riff. "Thrills in the Night" sports a pretty good chorus, too. Also, I think that Mark St. John is a skilled guitarist--his feisty, fleet-fingered guitar solo on the lively "I've Had Enough (Into the Fire)" is impressive. He also provides an interesting guitar solo on the fast-paced "Under the Gun." The CD booklet contains the song lyrics and an individual photo of each member of the band. I also like the cover art. The back cover photo of the group is cool, too. Animalize is worth a listen.
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on September 20, 2000
After the successful LICK IT UP tour,it was time to cut Kiss' liabilities;Vinnie Vincent was fired(for the second time)and Mark St John was welcomed on as the new axememan.By 1984,pop metal was a fixture on the charts,so Gene and Paul decided to water down their heavy metal sound for a more friendly MTV-style metal. Although at the time Gene said of St John,"he can make Beethoven sound like the ultimate boogie";he later complained that Mark was a speed guitarist in a band of power chord nuts . . .he didn't see to fit with the group.Nevertheless,ANIMALIZE has some KISS KLASSICS:THRILLS IN THE NIGHT continues Paul's sterling run of power ballads;HEAVEN'S ON FIRE was a chart fixture(even here in Australia);LONELY IS THE HUNTER is an overlooked Gene masterpiece;I'VE HAD ENOUGH(INTO THE FIRE)is an bomb blast of an album opener.Unfortunately,Mark does sound like an "angry bee" when he's soloing and the swelling up of his hand before touring behind ANIMALIZE paved the way for Bruce Kulick,thus ending the Mark St John contribution to Kisstory.I firmly believe the watering down of the sound achieved of CREATURES OF THE NIGHT and LICK IT UP only hurt the band in the long run.Though ANIMALIZE was the perfect sound track for American Metal 1984-85 style,it sounds a little dated now(unlike the post HOT IN THE SHADE or pre DYNASTY albums).
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on August 14, 2000
As much as some fans trash this album now, when it came out in 1984 it returned KISS to the top of the Rock/Metal world. There's a simple reason why: "Heaven's On Fire." One of the best songs KISS ever recorded. Catchy as hell, yet Heavy, "HOF" stands as a true KISS Klassic! On ANIMALIZE Paul Stanley continued to dabble in true Heavy Metal (as he had for the previous two albums, CREATURES OF THE NIGHT, and LICK IT UP) with two of KISS' best Metal songs in "I've Had Enough," and "Under The Gun." Eric Carr truly shines on those two tracks, as you can hear how much energy the man had behind the drum kit! Paul also dabbled in David Lee Roth territory with "Get All You Can Take," another solid track. Gene's songs, however, are not nearly as good. "Burn Bitch Burn," features his best riff since "Calling Dr. Love," but, unfortunately, has NONE of that song's lyrical tongue-in-cheek wit. "BBB" may well have the dumbest lyrics Gene has ever written - and that's saying a lot! Gene also contributes two songs that again define mediocre, "Lonely Is The Hunter" (fun to play on guitar, not as much fun to listen to on the CD), and "Murder In High Heels." One track from Gene that actually shows some spark both musically and lyrically is "While The City Sleeps." It is his lone inspired track on the album. Overall, with it's Rock 'N' Metal style, ANIMALIZE's highlights far outweigh the mediocre tracks, making it a must-have for all KISS fans -and for most fans of 80's Metal in general. --(and if you like this one, check out KISS' ASYLUM, Dokken's UNDER LOCK AND KEY, and Alice Cooper's HEY STOOPID)
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on December 7, 1998
There is absolutely nothing tame about KISS' 1984 excursion- Animalize. Hand it to the late Eric Carr to reinvigorate a previously low-octane rhythm section. Carr's heavy-handed attack is the new heart of the ideal KISS sound- big, fat beats that are the underpinning of big, simple riffs. After dropping the substance-plagued Vinnie Vincent, KISS install new shred-meister Mark St. John on lead duties. His solos are just too darn fast to fit in with the local buzz, and thus the tunes suffer a tad come time for the lead breaks. Maybe he was trying to impress Gene; who knows? Who cares? The album definitely rolls from start to finish, with nary a Paul Stanley-let's-get-the-chicks-with-this-ballad ballad. Yippee! This piece of Kisstory is indeed memorable, for all the elements of a consistently strong effort are present- inter-song dynamics and speed shifts, hooky vocal melodies, crafty production, and plain 'ol musicianship. Animalize represents the penultimate of KISS contrivances, but 1985's follow-up Asylum takes the bacon as far as I am concerned. -David Newman 1998
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on September 11, 1999
With KISS refueling their career with albums like Creatures Of The Night and Lick It Up, Animalize keeps the chops up to snuff. Now in the mist of finding the right lead guitarist, Mark St. John continues what Vinnie Vincent did on Lick It Up but is kept on a short leash by Gene and Paul. Also with Gene Simmons knee deep in his new movie career, Paul is the star on this album. Left with repolishing Gene's songs like "Burn Bitch Burn" and "While The City Sleeps", Paul and Company rip out hard rockers like "I've Had Enough", "Under The Gun", and "Get All You Can Take". This album only contains 9 songs and could of used a song with Eric Carr on vocals which would have been a treat for KISS fans, but with the 2 rockin' singles, "Heaven's On Fire" and "Thrills In The Night", this album will definately please a metalhead from the 80's.
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on January 22, 2001
Animalize is worth buying just for track 3 alone. Burn Bitch Burn is the ultimate Gene song(besides God of Thunder) complete with a killer riff and great lyrics. How can you argue with the line "I wanna put my log in your fireplace?" Overall, this is a vastly underrated Kiss album, tracks like I've Had Enough, Heaven's On Fire, Murder in High Heels, and Thrills in the Night attest to the fact. Paul's vocals are in top form and Eric Carr proves he was a major talent on the drums. Mark St. John may not have been Ace Frehely but he's more than adequate on this record. Animalize is not Destroyer, it's Kiss during an evolutionary period in the band's history. Pick it up, your collection will not be complete without it.
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