Released: 1978, Mercury Records
Reviewer: Lord of the Wasteland
This is one INCREDIBLE album! Who knew Ace could belt out the tunes like this?! Up until this point, we had only heard him sing 2 songs: “Shock Me” and “Rocket Ride”. Ace has a unique voice that fits the songs perfectly and who can deny his influence on guitar. Without him, many artists, including Dimebag Darrel from Pantera, have openly said that they would not be playing guitar.
With ACE FREHLEY, he sings on all of the vocal tracks and it is arguably the best of the four Kiss solo efforts. There really isn't a bad song in the bunch, although “Wiped-Out” is a little weaker than the rest. “New York Groove”, “I'm In Need Of Love”, “Rip It Out”, and “Speedin' Back To My Baby” are the best songs on the album followed closely by the instrumental “Fractured Mirror”, which showcases Ace's incredible talent on guitar (as if we didn't know already). Ace’s two favorite past-times are a recurring theme on the album: drugs and alcohol. “Snow Blind”, “Ozone”, “Wiped-Out”—what are they about ? There are a lot of weird sound effects that can be heard on the album which shows that Ace was willing to make the most of his solo effort by experimenting with different sounds. Producer Eddie Kramer (who worked on all of Kiss’ live albums) made Ace’s album sound really futuristic and captured his “space” persona perfectly.
Overall, ACE FREHLEY outshines Gene's, Paul's and, especially Peter's albums in musicianship to be my favorite by far. Unfortunately, Ace’s story seems to be one of unrealized potential as drugs, alcohol and various other things seem to have limited his success both inside and outside of Kiss.