Walmart’s October KISS

It’s Walmart and KISS in October. The mega-retailer announced it will be the exclusive retail outlet for the band’s first album of new material in 11 years.

A lot has happened since KISS released Psycho Circus in 1998: file-sharing decimated the major label system, chain music stores such as Tower Records faded into history and online music stores ensured consumers of instant gratification without ever having to rip the shrink-wrap off of a new CD. Or hold one, for that matter.

So it’s really no surprise that KISS ink a deal designating Walmart as the exclusive retailer for the band’s new album – Sonic Boom – scheduled to drop Oct. 6.

In addition to Walmart, Sonic Boom will also be sold in Sam’s Club stores and on

To be sure, the music biz isn’t the only thing that’s changed in 11 years. Psycho Circus arrived in stores after the band’s successful 1996-97 reunion tour that reunited all four original members sporting the sci-fi costumes and makeup that fans have known and loved since the 1970s.

But not all reunions are meant to last. Today’s KISS still features founding members Gene Simmons and Paul Stanley, but Ace Frehley and Peter Criss made separate exits in the years following the reunion tour. Eric Singer, who drummed for KISS in the early ‘90s, returned to the band upon Criss’ departure. Guitarist Tommy Thayer now handles the licks once delivered by Ace.

This time around KISS is giving fans a lot of bang for the buck. In addition to an album of new songs, the Sonic Boom release also features a complete, re-recorded greatest hits package and a live concert DVD. Total price? $12. Such a deal!

“Through all of the albums that are considered our classics, we tried to always find ways to give our fans extras that went beyond just the music,” Paul Stanley said. “Besides our making the best KISS album in decades, Walmart has made it possible for us to include a bonus CD with 15 of our most famous songs and an additional live DVD, shot during our recent concert in Buenos Aires. So in every sense, Sonic Boom is the ultimate return to classic KISS form. You wanted the best, you got the best!”

Click here for the KISS Web site.