Kiss’ Gene Simmons says that no ‘iconic’ new artists have emerged since 1988

Frontman maintains his belief that "rock is dead"

Gene Simmons of Kiss has reiterated his belief that rock music is dead, stating that there has not been an iconic artist emerge since 1988.

Last month (September) Simmons accused record labels of failing to adequately support rock artists and declared the genre of rock to be “finally dead”.

Simmons’ robust criticism of the music industry saw him assert that rock artists don’t receive the same support from record companies that they did in the ’60s and ’70s and laid a portion of the blame on illegal downloading.

Speaking at a more recent event in Kansas City on September 28, Simmons was asked to elaborate on his comments, allowing him to reveal his suggestion that there have been no “iconic” acts emerge in the past 26 years. “Rock’n’roll is dead,” he said in an interview which can be seen below.

“I’m gonna ask you a question, and you decide, OK? From 1958 until 1988, it’s 30 years, name hundreds and hundreds of classic rock acts. OK, I’ve got Elvis Presley, The Beatles, The Rolling Stones, Jimi Hendrix, Led Zeppelin… on and on and on. Even Motown… Madonna, Prince, Michael Jackson. From 1988 until today, just give me five. You can’t name [them]. Iconic [newer artists]? No. Nobody. How about that?”

Ultimately, Simmons feels that technology devalues emerging artists. “I think it really comes down to when technology outpaces the laws of the land, it’s the Wild West; people just go and grab territory and don’t pay for it. It devalues new bands. It doesn’t affect me – I make a living – but it’s sad, because the next Beatles or the next Kiss, it does not have a chance.”

Watch Simmons state his case below: