Kix - Hot Wire

Kix – Hot Wire

90 / 100

What you get with ‘Hot Wire’ is an album that always lives up to the expectations of their fans. The Kix boys can always lay claim to the fact that they have never sold out to their fans.

Written by: gdmonline

ALBUM: Hot Wire
LABEL: East/West
SERIAL: 7 91714-2
YEAR: 1991
CD REISSUE: Discogs Reissue List

LINEUP: Steve Whiteman – vocals, harp * Brian Forsythe – guitars * Ronnie Younkins – guitars * Donnie Purcell – bass * Jimmy Chalfant – drums

TRACK LISTING: 01 Hot Wire * 02 Girl Money * 03 Luv A Holic * 04 Tear Down The Walls * 05 Bump The La La * 06 Rock N Roll Overdose * 07 Cold Chills * 08 Same Jane * 09 Pants On Fire (Liar Liar) * 10 Hee Bee Jee Bee Crush



Someone mentioned to me a while back, suggesting that this fifth Kix album was the ultimate hard rock party album. Well. I’ve heard a lot of ‘so-called’ party albums in my time, and yes, this one is a contender, but I’d venture to suggest that some of the early AC/DC albums, plus some minor favourites like the first Danger Danger album or the mega platinum seller ‘Slippery When Wet’ by Bon Jovi might be better bets.

What Kix do is follow a formula that never strays too far from the beaten track. Keep it simple, in your face, and play at high-energy. To be fair, though the melody is always close by, you’d have to suggest that AC/DC and Aerosmith are closer relatives to their style. Chuck in a few ounces of trashy sleaze with appropriate doses of sexual innuendo (as they’ve been renowned throughout their career), and you’ll find the mix is just about right, if you wanna get a good ol’ fix of Kix!

There are a few other Kix albums reviewed here at GDM, so we won’t repeat their prior history here. However, what I will say is that around this timeframe, the US was awash with bands from that hard rock/sleaze side of the alley. Some new, and some with older pedigrees (like Kix, Killer Dwarfs, Britny Fox etc) who were still trying to hold on before the grunge tide took them away amid the down-tuned backwash.

What you get with ‘Hot Wire’ is an album that always lives up to the expectations of their fans. The Kix boys can always lay claim to the fact that they have never sold out to their fans. What you see is what you get. A promise made right from their debut album ten years earlier.

The Songs

A storming opener is the title track ‘Hot Wire’. The stomping intro leads into a healthy riff-happy affair, which by the sounds of things is a bit of live favourite. ‘Girl Money’ could very well be a tribute to AC/DC, dopey lyrics included! ‘Tear Down The Walls’ is the albums ballad offering, and a good one it is too. Compare it to their 1988 hit ‘Don’t Close Your Eyes’ and you can see they were aiming for a repeat dose. Or more probably.. the label was!

The pair of ‘Rock n Roll Overdose’ and ‘Same Jane’ are hard-hitting rockers, again with that AC/DC swagger. Very appealing with a beer in hand! The party flavour is hard to ignore on (suitably named) tracks like ‘Luv-A-Holic’, ‘Bump The La La’, ‘Pants On Fire’ and the albums parting shot ‘Hee Bee Jee Bee Crush’.. All infectious, raucous numbers where we even get to hear Steve Whiteman blast it out on harp (harmonica to you and I).

In Summary

As mentioned, though they went out with the tide, they still managed to release a few more albums into the 90’s decade, including a live set from 1993, and 1995’s ‘Show Business’. These days, Steve Whiteman has been involved more recently with the band Funny Money, Forsythe moved west to L.A, while Purcell it seems, has dropped out of the limelight. A good fun-time band, and always worthwhile having a smattering of their albums lying around the house.

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