The Rock Pit - Hard rock, Metal and Blues Interviews, news & reviews from Australia and around the world

The Rock Pit - Hard rock, Metal and Blues Interviews, news & reviews from Australia and around the world
Ace-Frehley-Origins-Vol-1-Review-2016

ACE FREHLEY - ORIGINS VOL 1 -Review

e-ONE MUSIC | Release Date: April 15th 2016




MUSIC REVIEW ARCHIVES


MUSIC REVIEWS 2015 
-----------
MUSIC REVIEWS 2014 
-----------
MUSIC REVIEWS 2013 
-----------
MUSIC REVIEWS 2012 
-----------
MUSIC REVIEWS 2011 
-----------
MUSIC REVIEWS 2010 
-----------
BOOKS & DVD'S 2009-2014 
-----------


Ace Frehley is back sooner than we might expect after what was surely one of the highpoints of his career in the release of ‘Space Invader’ (2014) – an album that climbed to number 9 on the Billboard charts.


Impetus is everything these days in the music business so after a release like that keeping that product in the public eye is all important, so here we have it – not an album of new material as some might have wanted but a covers album from artists that inspired Ace along the way.


In truth it’s a very safe setlist of classic songs by classic bands with just enough Kiss in there for fans to grab a copy (some would argue why Kiss are even featured at all). Of all the covers there’s not one left-field selection (though presumably this being Volume 1 means there may be on future releases) which is a little disappointing. The one real surprise is one of the Kiss selections – ‘Rock N Roll Hell’ from Creatures of the Night, a song Frehley didn’t write (that was down to Simmons along with Bryan Adams and Jim Vallance); didn’t play on (that was down to Robben Ford) and didn’t sing on (Simmons did).  In truth it’s a song I’d not really listened to in years and listening to it again now in this company it’s not at all special, maybe it is to Ace for some hitherto unknown reason, and I guess that’s all that matters.


Kiss songs aside, the covers are a treat, sure they’re familiar, sure they’re faithful to the originals, but they do have a certain life and flair that bears repeated listens. As I always say with covers albums though, what would make you put on this platter rather than dig back to the source? Of all the ‘guest slots’ I love the John 5 contributions best I think – there’s a blistering ‘Parasite’ and Hendrix’s ‘Spanish Castle Magic’ is perhaps the best thing here. There’s also Slash’s contribution to Thin Lizzy’s ‘Emerald’ that’s well worth a listen. Elsewhere the Zep cover ‘Brig it on Home’ works really well, and even though I don’t think anyone can touch Paul Rodgers as a vocalist Paul Stanley doesn’t absolutely kill Free’s ‘Fire and Water’.


Like all covers albums though there’s always one stinker and here it’s the cover of Wild Thing, in truth a song that’s hard to do wrong, but Ace and Lita Ford manage to make it sound awkward and perfunctory when it should sound like the birth of Rock and Roll!  With Ace regularly name-checking Clapton, Page, Hendrix and Townshend as his guitar heroes I was a little surprised to find one missing – with nothing by the Who making volume 1, but I’m sure that’s coming.    


This is a cool collection, essential I’m sure for fans and with a decent enough track list to hopefully open a few younger listeners ears to a few classics, but it’s not something that will change your life like it did for Ace back in the day.  What is does so though is show you that Ace is not only far from done, he’s as eager as he’s ever been to be heard.

 

 

by Mark Rockpit

 

 


Want a release reviewed? Want to let us know about your album? Contact us now

For reviews of live shows, head to our LIVE REVIEWS

www.therockpit.net is a proud supporter of local live music and unsigned bands