When it comes to talking about heroes, inspirations or your favourite things in general you just wouldn’t know where to start or finish; author James Campion proves that this can be done in an incredibly smooth operation. His latest book to prove this is “Shout It Out Loud: The Story Of Kiss’s Destroyer And The Making Of An American Icon” that is honestly one of the most insightful and interesting books to ever hit the shelves.
The book takes the reader through what is really an incredible journey about the making of “Destroyer”; the fourth studio album by Hard Rock legends KISS, this album was a turning point in the band’s career that turned them from an underground Metal oddity to a cultural global phenomenon.
Reading this book takes you on a visual journey as the beautifully descriptive and creative language craft images in the head; particularly innovative descriptions of each song letting the reader imagine the song as each chapter is read. Author James Campion states about the songs:
“All the songs had a certain theme to them, a certain sound to them. It was very inspiring.”
From reading the book and the in depth discussion about each song in detail, this author’s passion is clearly evident in each description of the album tracks between each chapter. If the passages about the songs don’t encourage you to listen to the album who knows what will.
Also the beginning of the book where author James Campion describes opening up the album for the very first time from the packaging; this particular experience is all too relatable for many music fans, not just in Metal but in other genres. This particular album was a huge inspiration to Campion as a writer and journalist:
“Destroyer was one of my first introductions to Heavy Rock, I loved it because I was so inspired by Horror films and comic books when I was a kid. KISS encompassed all of that in their imagery and particularly that album.”
Reading this book is like reading a documentary of the album making; the descriptive passages about each song, the interviews with those behind the record including legendary producer Bob Ezrin and some high quality colourful images. The in-depth research Campion undertook to write this amazing masterpiece certainly shows in this book alongside his passion and dedication to the scene, helping the album’s legacy live on.
“It took me about sixteen months to get Bob Ezrin to sit down to do an interview; once I got he poured out, I have always respected people in the back scenes of something whether it’s films, plays and certainly record albums, things like that. Once they started to tell me their stories, once they started to tell me how much work and effort went into this thing that inspired me and my generation for many years.”
The beautiful thing about this book is that you don’t necessarily need to be a KISS fan to appreciate this amazing feature, lovers of Hard Rock and music in general would love this book. Especially when the book provides a rich history of how music was recorded back in the day which is an interesting topic for those of you who are a part of the music industry. Campion gives a great description of how the book was written.
“There were two sides of the book; the first is the journalist, the researcher and people learning about the stories, then there is the writer part of me that has nothing to do with the journalistic side and that side tries to tell a story in an engaging and fun way.”
To top it all off, an incredible journey and a great way to learn about an album through a completely different angle.