DECEMBER 1st 2014
ACE FREHLEY: SPACE INVADER

Review by Anka

Ace Frehley doesn’t need any introduction for any rock fans, this is the original - later on and off - Kiss guitarist. His solo career has seen the release of a few decent albums until the present “Space Invader” which is his 6th solo effort.

It’s a friendly hard rock album that doesn’t really shine with anything in particular except some good guitar work which is always a given in an Ace Frehley album. But alone the guitar parts can’t infuse much personality to the whole album, which starts sounding linear and repetitive after only a couple songs. It becomes a rather standard rock collection of songs that lacks the hard-hitting elements needed to make an impression. Pleasant? Yes. Interesting, no.

The first track is probably the most uninspired choice for an album opener, I’d say it’s my least favorite song on the entire release. Not only does the song fail to produce excitement, but the vocal line is nothing to get fond of and can even make you worry a bit about the rest of the material.

However 3 songs in the album, the tone slightly changes to a heavier, rather serious bluesy note. There is also more diversity, though nothing beyond the reasonable limits of the genre. Even though at times the guitars lose the spotlight in favor of the vocal lines (which really shouldn’t stand out much), there’s still a good ol’ rocking vibe maintained through the rhythm parts. With the riffs getting heavier and the pace slowing down a bit, there’s more of a traditional feel in there, especially with the addition of some keyboards. Things seem to level out immediately into the album, and this is where I feel it got stale irremediably. 

Solos are actually my favorite part on this album, coupled with some very beautiful leads,  that seem way too short sometimes. However it’s the guitar and only the guitar that keeps the album at an enjoyable, fun level that otherwise couldn’t be perceived.

Speaking of fun, the lyrics are another turn-off and altogether you might just avoid focusing on that. From the expected space-related themes to girl trouble and other womanizing issues, there’s a better way to enjoy the album and that is by paying more attention to the riffing and the solos.

Songs to check out: Starship, Past the Milky Way, The Joker (Steve Miller Band cover song)

All over this seems to be an album that lacks inspiration and sounds too bland. The good elements previously mentioned make this worth a listen of two but I wouldn’t see this album get a better role than background music in someone’s daily life.