Written by Dave Clements
Aug 03, 2012 at 08:00 PM
Going into this hot Houston night I thought I would be witnessing a battle of the bands…and it was exactly that and MORE.

ImageThe undercard was a battle of the group The Treatment -vs- Mother Nature, the glaring sun and near 100 degree temperatures. These guys came out ready to crank it up and they did, non-stop. Their high energy approach was very appealing to those who came early. These four Brits definitely made it worth our while. The Treatment won their bout with a unanimous decision after fighting a very worthy opponent – Mother Nature!

As a side note, equally impressive was this band’s publicist, who sent out a nice email blast to all media representatives who were approved for credentials encouraging us to come early and catch these guys. It was a clever move and it worked. All of us were there which isn’t often the case.

Now on to the main event, the featured bout of the night. We had in one corner, first in the ring, wearing a little paint & a lot of ink…Motley Crue. In the other corner Kiss, wearing a lot of paint & wondrous amounts of ink.

ImageJudging this fight (along with my 16,000 plus assistants who filled every seat and the lawn and stood all night thru every minute of the battle) was going to be difficult. And they fought it out right up to the Pavilion’s 11 pm curfew bell.

Early in this match, Motley Crue came out swinging…literally. It looked like a Circus with beautiful women swinging high about the stage floor. Kiss? No women, doing anything. Advantage Motely Crue.

Kiss concentrated on the band being elevated -vs- any support extras. These guys came in together elevated and were raised high above the stage several times at different points during the set. Each member took a turn and sang from high above the mat. Wild man Gene Simmons was up on top of the spot lights at one time. He held on tight to his mic stand as his arrival up top looked a little shaky to me. Motley Crue on the other hand had drummer Tommy Lee rotating 360 degrees while playing, once even with a fan named Susie along for the ride. Although impressive I can only award a few style points to Motley Crue -vs- an overall win for better overall elevation to Kiss.

ImageMotley Crue, not to be outdone, pulled out their secret, or probably not so secret, weapon…the F-Bomb. Round after round, song after song, they employed the F-Bomb to deliver below the belt blows. The Crue’s frontman, Vince Neil, was taking no chances at being outdone in this catagory as he piled on further, often with very inappropriate remarks about his sexual prowess. He followed with a punch to the face declaration, ‘we don’t apologize for anything we do!’. Kiss, perhaps taking note of many of their very young fans in the audience, never used an F-Bomb, at least not that I heard. They never had a chance of beating MC in this area of the battle. Clear F-Bomb winner…Motley Crue. Points awarded by this judge? Zero, zip, nada.

Let’s move on to lighting…here a split decision. In both corners it was non-stop, bright, colorful, and very entertaining lighting.

The sound? Advantage Kiss. It would have been a very close call however Motley Crue’s drums were dangerously loud several times during the evening. They sounded like cannons going off at close range. I had earplugs in and it still hurt. Guess that’s what I get sitting so close to the ropes.

Video presentation was also close to being too close to call. Motley Crue was spectacular yet abstract. Kiss’ video was all about the guys. I found it to be more meaningful. It seemed to acknowledge the fans and allowed all present, even those in the cheap seats, to see what was going on with the band. Advantage Kiss.

ImageAlso to be considered in this battle was the audience reaction to ‘sing alongs’ and also reactions to song selections, band comments, and response to all ‘other’ activities on stage. Both bands seemed to get their fair share of audience support therefore, a split decision. No wait advantage Kiss as way more fans were wearing Kiss t-shirts -vs- Motley Crue T’s so I’m giving awarding a slight edge to Kiss.

Speaking of slight edge, there wasn’t one in the category of ‘Let’s Help The Professional Photographers Get Good Photos’. Motley Crue didn’t even show up for this part of the competition. The photographers were ejected to the sound board, way away from the ring. MC did absolutely nothing to give us a decent shot for you folks. Now, imagine the very extreme opposite of that circumstance. Kiss delivered a knock down blow when they invited all the photographers to come stage side. I had the opportunity to take my best shot of each individual band member and the group collectively. And not once, but repeated blows, over and over, during the first two songs . It felt like we were the only people in their audience and they were working to give us the best they had to give. Hope you’ll check out the photo gallery and see the results. Like I said, Kiss scored a very decisive knock down here.

Motley Crue was trying to pick themselves up off the mat with full blown T & A. They held back only enough to not be arrested. The band’s supporting cast was beautiful, well endowed, and talented. They made sure they were very visible and appealing to the many alcohol infused red blooded male fans. Meanwhile these same fans tried hard, under the gaze of their companions, not to look too interested in what was going on up on the stage. Note to my wife: I hardly noticed the three women on stage or was it four!

Judging the catagory entertainment value was a challenge. Both bands were pushing hard, using all their tricks. Yet when all the factors in this area were considered the winner was Kiss, by a tongue…a very long, big Gene Simmons tongue. Motley Crue provided their audience some energetic moments. Putting their 4 fists together stacked one on top of the other was cool, and their comment to the fans ‘ how does it feel to be worshipped?’ went a long way. It still just wasn’t enough to overcome the tongue. It didn’t help Motley Crue any that lead guitarist, Mick Mars, never lifted his head for the entire show, therefore he forfeits any potential points for his great guitar playing.

ImageBefore declaring the OVERALL WINNER of the night let me talk about how much heat and fire each band threw during this contest. Flames were everywhere for Motley Crue and Kiss, including out of the guitars! Both bands held nothing back and to do this on such a scorching hot Texas night made it even more impressive. So who had the advantage here? Motley Crue…? No, sorry, it was Kiss by a degree or perhaps two. Not sure if that’s Fahrenheit or Celsius…

Finally after careful deliberation and much consideration, going back and recalculating the results, the winner by unanimous decision is, without a doubt ________(you tell me)!

Until next time, I hope you keep it between the navigational beacons.

P.S. Email me at david-clements@msn.com and give me your opinion…I’ll give you mine.