Stupid questions with Gene Simmons & Paul Stanley. EW writer Dalton Ross chats up half the members of KISS

By Dalton Ross
Updated October 17, 2010 at 04:00 AM EDT
KISS: Jeffrey Mayer/

One’s a starchild, the other a demon. But this giant culture clash has not prevented Paul Stanley and Gene Simmons from making Kisstory. We caught up with the dynamically dressed duo as the band celebrates its 30th anniversary with a new album (”KISS Symphony: Alive IV,” out July 22) and nationwide tour (with Aerosmith, starting Aug. 2). Sure, they survived ”Music From the Elder,” but how will Paul and Gene manage when they square off against some hotter-than-hell stupid questions?

I don’t mean to sound like a geek, but if I rock and roll all nite and party every day, won’t I get tired?
PAUL You sound like a geek.

You guys put your pictures on a line of Kiss Kondoms. Gene, did you ever think you’d get in so many guys’ pants?
GENE I was actually hoping to wait to get to jail to come out.
PAUL We figured that between Kiss Kondoms and Kiss Kaskets, we’ll get you coming or going.

Speaking of those Kiss coffins, isn’t it a bit hard to party every day when you’re, you know, dead?
PAUL You figure that the most suitable place to wind up after that party is in a Kiss Kasket. At least people know what was responsible.

Now, back in the ’70s, I wanted the best, but my mom got me ”Frampton Comes Alive!” for Christmas instead. Is that close enough?
GENE I would say close, but no guitars.

Paul, in ”God Gave Rock ‘N’ Roll to You,” you sang, ”You don’t have money or a fancy car/And you’re tired of wishin’ on a falling star/You gotta put your faith in a loud guitar.” I’d just like to say?well, thanks, man. Thanks for being there.
PAUL If you saw my house, you’d know that it works. When I bring people over, I go, ”Welcome to the house that bad reviews built.”

In the 1978 TV movie ”Kiss Meets the Phantom of the Park” you take on Dracula, Frankenstein, and the Wolf Man. Was this some sort of ultimate battle for Halloween costume superiority?
GENE We eventually won, as you well know, because our shoes are taller.
PAUL We’re still waiting for someone to tell us what that was about. If we ever figure out the ending of that film, we’ll make part 2.

I also couldn’t help but notice that half the time Ace Frehley appears to be played by a black guy. Was this an affirmative-action thing?
PAUL We wanted to make sure we got as much soul in that film as possible.

Gene, in your new book, ”Sex Money Kiss,” you write, ”Credit cards, by and large, are for suckers.” Remind me, why do I need the Kiss Platinum Visa Card again?
GENE The Kiss Visa card is very simple. If you’re gonna whip it out, it may as well look good.

Paul, my editor keeps your autograph in her desk. I guess what I’m asking is, is there still some ammunition left in the Love Gun?
PAUL There’s an endless supply of bullets.