Alice Cooper hits back at Gene Simmons’ claim that rock is dead

“I guarantee you right now that in London somewhere, in garages, they’re learning Aerosmith and Guns ‘N’ Roses.”

Alice Cooper

Image: Frank Hoensch / Getty

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Alice Cooper has hit back at Kiss frontman Gene Simmons’ claim that rock music, as a genre, is dead and buried.

Simmons first expressed his views on the death of the genre in 2014, but has recently doubled and tripled down on his claim, first citing a lack of “epic stuff,” creating unmemorable rock, and then blaming “young fans” for making the genre financially unfeasible by focusing on streaming.

Cooper addressed his comments while speaking to NME: “Gene Simmons – I would like him to do my taxes because he’s a businessman and that’s valid, but I guarantee you right now that in London somewhere, in garages, they’re learning Aerosmith and Guns ‘N’ Roses.

“There’s a bunch of 18-year-kids in there with guitars and drums and they’re learning hard rock. It’s the same with the United States: there’s all these young bands that want to resurge that whole area of hard rock.”

Cooper also discussed how rock music, in general, might not be dominating the mainstream, but he thinks the genre is “where it should be right now.”

“We’re not at the Grammys… Rock ’n’ roll is outside looking in right now, and that gives us that outlaw attitude,” Cooper said, before adding: “the one kind of music that started and never ended was hard rock. It went to punk, it went to disco, it went to hip-hop, it went to grunge, but the one thing that went through the middle of it was hard rock.”

Cooper has recently given a different reflection on the changing landscape of rock, saying that the ‘shock rock’ approach that gave him his start would no longer work, as audiences are used to wild on-stage antics. “You could cut off your arm and eat it on stage and it wouldn’t matter,” he explained. “The audience is shockproof.”

See the full interview with Cooper here.

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