To my ear anyone trying to find some critical daylight between the Chuck Berry, MC5, The Dolls, Pistols and Kiss are kind of missing the point of what this music is for.
Surely Kiss have got more in common with Mike & Bernie Winters than any of those acts listed there?
It's all dumb-ass party music. Kiss do it best.
Maybe they do in your opinion, Ian. But there's far more to the others you mentioned than that. Chuck Berry's clever, storytelling lyrics are far from dumb ass, the MC5 and the Pistols have, whether you or anyone else likes them or not, had a social and political resonance that Kiss haven't ever had so, for me at least, the critical daylight between these three and Kiss is actually quite blinding.
Maybe you have a point with the Dolls, but even there there is an outsider, dangerous aspect that is worlds apart from Kiss. But I accept that some of the Dolls stuff could be described as 'dumb ass' - Dance Like A Monkey from the re-formed version immediately comes to mind - but it's got a swagger, a looseness and power that Kiss could only dream about.
In my opinion of course!
Don't want to worry you Keith, but I felt much the same as you about Kiss a couple of years back. As I've got older and dumber, I've grown to like them.
But that's even worse, Squid!!
I can understand people who liked them when they were 16 feeling all warm and cuddly about them for nostalgic reasons. But not getting into them now - especially when you like some really interesting stuff.