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Great Expectations

Gene Simmons, Bob Ezrin

"Great Expectations" was Gene's most Beatles-esque track to be seriously considered for a KISS album. Like the other material it was influenced by Bob, though he now believes that they went slightly over the top with the embellishments. The lyrics, which had originally "spoken" about each member of the band were deemed too close to the band, too "first-person." Bob persuaded Gene to make the song more general, like a singer singing to the crowd. Thus the song evolved and grew even grander, be it through orchestration or Gene's serious delivery.

According to Gene this song was the most difficult one on the album to record due to the sophistication of the musical structure and the effects that Bob incorporated. Bob also now believes that they might have gone slightly over the top with all of the effects added to the song in its transition from Gene's original idea. The song was inspired by the Laurence Olivier film of the same title, though the subject matter came from Gene wanting to write about the band. He rewrote much of an earlier demo, "You've Got Nothing To Live For," notably the verses to create the piece. However, Gene also had another demo with the title "Great Expectations" dating back to at least 1974 that included elements that would be used, if nothing other than the title. The track includes Beethoven's "Piano Sonata No. 8 in C Minor." Like other KISS songs this track was originally written on an acoustic guitar.

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