Sound — 8
Ahh, "Monster" at last. The follow-up to the current line-up's "Sonic Boom". This "Wall Of Sound" on "Monster" is pretty in-your-face. Recorded straight from analog tape, the sound has nice, crisp vibe to it. But, some of the overall songs are well... Mediocre. "Back To The Stone Age" sounds like a song written for that Nickelodeon kids show Gene Simmons created. Oh what was that called? "My Dad The Rock Star". Also, if you listen to "Wall Of Sound" and "The Devil Is Me", the songs sort of mirror one another sound-wise, especially in the choruses. Tommy Thayer has really stepped up his game on this album. He has really come into his own style without straying away from a classic KISS sound. Listen to the solo on "Outta This World", a song which he also wrote and sings on, on the album. Paul's voice is definitely still capable of getting up there, although I'm not quite sure he pushed it as much as he could've on the album. Still great, I believe the auto-tune roll came into play on most of his songs in the final mixing.
Lyrics — 6
As for the lyrics, it seems as if Gene has ran out of ideas on what to talk about. For instance, a lyric passage from the song, "Eat Your Heart Out", on "Monster". "Yeah, give me a kiss I'll bite your lip C'mon baby let your backbone slip" This lyrical passage is taken from the song, "Russian Roulette", off of the bands previous album, "Sonic Boom". "Open up and let your backbone stiff" What's with the "backbone" obsession Gene? Also, the lyrics seem to be cheesy and comical. Some say that KISS has always been that way lyrically, but this album takes the cake.
Overall Impression — 7
Does it compare to other albums? Yes. It is basically a follow-up from "Sonic Boom". KISS, themselves, compared it to being a mix where "'Destroyer' meets 'Revenge'". If such a statement were true, then "Monster" would melt your brain and eat your heart out. Sadly, it does not compare to those iconic KISS albums. The songs that really stand out, to me personally, would have to be "Wall Of Sound", "Shout Mercy", "Eat Your Heart Out", "All For The Love Of Rock & Roll", and "Outta This World". As a dedicated KISS fan, I would buy this album over and over again if my copy were damaged or lost. But I'm sure, others would not. If anything, they would download it off the internet. "Monster" is not a very memorable KISS album such as the likes of "Love Gun" or "Rock And Roll Over" are.