Six outstanding live hard rock albums from the 1990s

It’s another great decade for live albums. Here are six that will rock your world, with a couple extra that you might want to miss out.
AC/DC's Angus Young
AC/DC's Angus Young / Koh Hasebe/Shinko Music/GettyImages
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Kiss - Very much live in the 1990s

Kiss got stuck into the live album groove over the years. They have released 13 live albums, so far that is. Don’t rule out a future one from the Kiss avatar show being developed! 

The 1990s were no exception for them. The band released three live albums that decade. Alive III (1993), Kiss Unplugged (1996) and You Wanted The Best, You Got The Best!! (1996). As mentioned earlier, I’ll put aside the MTV Unplugged album and take a quick look at the other two 1990s live releases. 

Kiss - Alive III (1993)

While they were pretty prolific with the live albums over the years, this third live album in their Alive run, was their first since 1977. Which, for such a strong live act, with ten other albums released since Alive II in 1977, isn’t unreasonable at all. It sometimes though, doesn’t get the full recognition it deserves. 

It’s a particularly good live album, if you like Kiss of course. It avoids too much duplication from the two previous live sets and gives a view of their music across all their formations before their 1996 reunion. With several top-class musical performances in there, they all combine very well to make this as good as the very popular Alive I for me. 

Worst Rock and Roll Hall of Fame induction ever. dark. Next. Worst Rock and Roll Hall of Fame induction ever

Kiss - You Wanted The Best, You Got The Best!!  (1996)

This is perhaps slightly strange and the second album on here that’s best avoided. It’s a live compilation album. There aren’t too many of those around. But then there aren’t too many bands like Kiss either. This 1996 release does rather ride on the back of the Kiss reunion that year. 

It draws on the first two live albums, Alive I and Alive II with four songs from each of those. That then gets topped up to 12 tracks with four more unreleased songs from those original concert recordings. Then to add to the reunion razzmatazz, there’s also an interview with the band by Jay Leno. I doubt that part gets on many playlists these days. 

The album is fine, it sounds as good as a Kiss live record, but then it would, it’s the same music more or less. So you wonder what the point is and imagine $’s are the answer. Look, it’s worth a play, but you are far better digging out Alive I or III for a longer and deeper Kiss.

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