Columbia House

Back in late 1975, my mom, who was a member of the Columbia House Record Club, received her monthly catalog. The deal was every month Columbia House would send a catalog and you would have to pick an album or they would just randomly send you one.

Well, the December 1975 catalog had a picture of the Kiss Destroyer album as its cover. My brother and I saw this picture and we were hooked. We didn’t know if this was a comic book, and record or just a very cool Frazetta rip-off. I think we both begged to own that little 5 by 7 booklet.

Eventually, we got that album into our house. Our grandparents sent us some money and dad took us to some record shop to get whatever we wanted. My brother grabbed a copy of Destroyer on 8-track, I ran to get a copy on cassette — but my dad stopped me by saying that it was stupid to get two copies of the same album. We should share. Shit.

So, I was forced to buy a copy of Alive on cassette. Turns out I dug the album, but Destroyer had a better cover and that’s what counts right?

Once we got back to my dad’s place my brother put on his tape and the opening sounds of the investigator talking at the car crash scene and sounds of broken glass and the car door shutting, and then starting. It was like those old-school Power Records on 45 we used to have. We were hooked.

I don’t listen to Kiss anymore, but when I see the Destroyer cover it takes me back to March of 1976 when I first heard the opening chords of Detroit Rock City. Superheroes came to life that day.

#michaelessington #bornfrustrated


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