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Spacewalk – A Salute to Ace Frehley

Review by Gary Hill

I’ve always appreciated Ace Frehley’s work. When Kiss did the whole solo album experience, the only two I really liked a lot were Frehley’s and Paul Stanley’s. I think Frehley’s talents are often under-rated. Well, this tribute album does a good job of breathing new life into some of his songs. Some of these are more effective than others, but it all works pretty well.

This review is available in book format (hardcover and paperback) in Music Street Journal: 2015  Volume 3 at lulu.com/strangesound.

Track by Track Review
Deuce - Marty Friedman

This is a smoking hot, slightly raw, rendition of this old school Kiss classic.

Shock Me - Gilby Clarke
In some ways this sounds so much like Ace Frehley that it’s scary. The guitar solo brings a different flavor, though. I’ve always loved this song, and there’s an added intensity to this rendition.
Rip It Out - Scott Ian
Other than the instrumental section mid track, this is another that really sounds a lot like the original. It’s also another cut with which I’ve always been enamored.
Hard Luck Woman - Jeff Watson
Here’s another of my favorite Kiss songs. This one has a different tone and sound from the original. I don’t like it quite as much as the Kiss version, really. Still, it’s a good song no matter what.
Snowblind - Snake Sabo
This is another cut I’ve always loved. Again this feels a lot like the original. It does lose a little of the magic, but only a little.
Rock Bottom - Russ Parrish
Now, this one does have a new identity. The intricate opening section sounds particularly beautiful here. The whole cut just feels fresh and reinvigorated. I might like this better than the original.
Parasite - Traci Guns

This feels meaner than the original. It’s another I might like better than the Kiss version. It’s a smoking hot screamer either way. The guitar solo section really scorches.

Cold Gin - John Norum
I think I actually like this version better than the original. It seems to have a little more fire in its belly.
New York Groove - Bruce Bouillet
I love this. It’s got sort of an old school blues meets funk approach. It’s definitely a different take on the piece. Don’t get me wrong, I prefer the original. This presents a different angle and quite a cool one, though. There is definitely some cool bass work on this cut. It works out to sort of a space jazz jam later, that’s tasty, too.
Fractured Mirror - Dimebag Darrell
This instrumental is another of my favorites from Frehley. This is also another that takes the cut in a bit of a different direction. While it loses some of the studio finesse and magic, it gains an immediacy and energy. I still prefer the original, but I like this one a lot, too.

 

 
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