Chris Jericho Finding A New Creative Outlet In Kuarantine, On The Appeal Of ’80s KISS
Chris Jericho says there’s no Kuarantine without quarantine, but it’s been a fun creative outlet for him and his new bandmates.
Jericho recently spoke with WrestleZone Managing Editor Bill Pritchard about his endeavors in and out of the ring, which includes the appropriately-titled KISS cover band, Kuarantine. While most of the country has been at home under quarantine, Jericho linked up with drummer Kent Slucher (Luke Bryan), Joe McGinness and PJ Farley (Trixter) for their first song together, a cover of KISS’ “No No No” from their 1987 album Crazy Nights.
Following that session, Kuarantine later recruited former KISS guitarist Bruce Kulick for their second song, Heart Of Chrome, available now. Jericho says the project is a perfect example of how people are staying creative here in the “COVID-19 era” and noted that the project probably wouldn’t have happened if everyone wasn’t stuck at home. The FOZZY frontman said he saw this project as the perfect way for a band to put out new content and entertain people while adding a fun twist.
“The best thing about it is I’ve never even met the guitar player. It just shows how you can make music now just doing it from home. Just connecting and like you said, staying creative during a pandemic so you don’t lose your mind and fall into the ‘Groundhog Day’ mentality, which I never subscribe to. It’s been really cool. We’ve gotten a lot of steam,” Jericho said, “we’re getting airplay all across the states now. We’ve got almost 100,000 views on the video in a short time. People are just looking for stuff to do and we got no problems giving them that.”
Both music videos Kurantine has shot so far feature cell phone videos and studio session footage, much different than a typical high-end music video shoot. Jericho saw the appeal of the band not only because of his affinity for KISS, but because it shows how you can create content at home without the stresses of a full-scale production.
“This is different because had there been no COVID, there would be no Kuarantine, in more ways than one,” Jericho said, “so that really appealed to me, the fact that it isn’t like you’d do a normal recording. It isn’t doing a video the way you’d normally do it. We took our phone and held it up and got somebody to edit it really killer and it cost us like a $100 and it was done in a day. If you’re doing a real video it takes five, six, seven hours maybe one or two days and you’re spending thousands and thousands of dollars and there’s no rules now for what COVID is.
“You could make something like we did with ‘The Bubbly Bunch’ in AEW and film it at our houses and you could never put that on camera on a nationwide television show three months ago,” Jericho said, “but now people are just accepting it cause they appreciate the fact that we’re doing something new and providing entertainment for people at this point and time when they need something to divert themselves from what’s going on.”
KISS is known worldwide for their physical appearances and stage show but the 80’s-era period of the band is one that often gets overlooked or criticized. Jericho says this specific era appeals to him because it’s one that he grew up with and it really gives the band a chance to do something “new” and different by 2020 standards.
“That’s when I discovered KISS. The first KISS song that I ever really heard, besides whatever you heard in the background growing up, the first one I ever paid attention to was “Heaven’s on Fire” from 1984 from Animalize,” Jericho said. “I went back and discovered KISS with make-up afterward, but to me, the ’80s version was great! And that’s when I went to high school so every album that came out you would know about it and read about it in the magazines and be waiting for it. So I think the best music is music that you focused on and has life meaning for you. I can think back to where I was when all of these records came out.”
Jericho added that he does enjoy the earlier catalog of music too, but the ’80s had more of an edge and the whole band can relate more to them. He added that not only is it a creative project but it’s providing new and fun content in a to people that are looking for an outlet.
“It just appeals to me, and then the fact that nobody really knows these songs and you’re hearing them for the first time. That’s why ‘No No No’ is getting all of this airplay, you’re hearing this song that begins with a minute-long drum and guitar solo, [thinking] ‘who is doing this in 2020?’ The answer is nobody, so it opens up a bit of a market for Kuarantine, where some people might think it’s great ‘original’ music but it’s really not. And, like I said, there’s really no plan for this and it just sort of happened because all of us are sitting here and doing nothing. We decided ‘let’s change that’ and be creative and provide content for the people that want to hear it.”
Jericho says there’s no concrete plan but the band could potentially put out a new song every few months. He said there’s a market for it and the material is there so it’s a good opportunity.
Kuarantine’s “No No No” is out now and their new song, “Heart Of Chrome”, can be heard above. The audio track can also be streamed on Apple Music, Amazon Music and other popular music streaming apps (press here for all services). Chris Jericho can also be seen each week on AEW Dynamite on TNT.
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