ACE FREHLEYThe only thing more recognizable than Ace Frehley’s signature “Spaceman” makeup is his guitar playing…
Those thundering riffs and singable solos have enshrined him as one of the most influential, inspiring, and impactful musicians of all time. Simply put, rock ‘n’ roll and heavy metal wouldn’t sound, look, or feel the same without him. Among hundreds of accolades, The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame® inducted him in 2014 as a Co-founder and the original lead guitarist of Kiss. Guitar World named him in the Top 15 of its “100 Greatest Heavy Metal Guitarists of All Time” and plugged the lead from “Shock Me” on the “50 Greatest Guitar Solos of All Time.” Magnifying the imprint of his catalog as a solo artist, Foo Fighters cut a fan-favorite cover of “Ozone,” and he even jammed out “New York Groove” alongside The Roots on NBC’s The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon. The late Dimebag Darrell of Pantera proudly sported a tattoo of Frehley on his chest, while Tom Morello of Rage Against The Machine celebrated him on X/Twitter as “My first guitar hero.” Embedded in popular culture, he also penned the New York Times bestselling memoir No Regrets and packed venues everywhere on tour for decades.
However, the GRAMMY® Award-nominated Bronx-born legend continues to elevate and electrify rock ‘n’ roll with his tenth full-length solo offering, 10,000 Volts [MNRK Heavy].
The record upholds an incredible legacy for Frehley, spanning 50-plus years in the limelight. Back in 1978, he delivered his solo debut, Ace Frehley. It reached platinum status and exploded as “the highest-selling of the four Kiss solo albums in the Soundscan era.”Pitchfork even retrospectively rated it a rare “8.5” score. During 1987, he dropped Frehley’s Comet, followed by 2009’s Anomaly. In 2014, he made history once again. His Space Invader LP captured #9 on the Billboard 200 and emerged as “The only solo album by a past or current Kiss member to reach the Top 10 on the chart.” Mike McCready of Pearl Jam, Slash, Lita Ford, and John 5 jumped at the chance to collaborate with him on 2016’s Origins Vol. 1, bowing at #1 on the Billboard Top Hard Rock Albums Chart and in the Top 5 of the Billboard Top Rock Albums Chart. He notably maintained his momentum with Spaceman  and Origins Vol. 2 . Applauding the latter, Forbes proclaimed, “The idea of fun has always defined ‘The Spaceman’s’ best work but never more so than on the cover songs that make up the Origins releases.”
Jumpstarting his next chapter, he parlayed this energy into 10,000 Volts. He introduces this body of work with the first single and title track. A surging riff sets the tone for “10,000 Volts” as his swaggering delivery takes hold and never lets go. It culminates on the chantable chorus, “She hit me like 10,000 volts, when I saw her face,” giving way to a fret-burning guitar solo—of course! Then, there’s “Walkin’ On The Moon.” His voice rings out between towering distortion as a lovestruck hook echoes, “When I wake up, you’re all I see. You got me walkin’ on the moon!” His string bends practically engage in a call-and-response with the refrain while another celestial solo resounds. A mean palm-muted chug underlines his pensive vocals on “Cherry Medicine,” where he confesses, “I knew I had to change my ways for sure to keep you by my side.”
Elsewhere, he beams out an otherworldly sonic frequency of his own on “Up In The Sky.” He urges, “They’re up in the sky. Girl, I know what I saw. Can’t trust the news. Can’t trust the law.” A cinematic hum dissolves into a melodic clean guitar on the instrumental finale, “Stratosphere.” Frehley’s evocative playing channels epic emotion with one of his most stunning and lyrical lead lines to date.
In the end, Frehley doesn’t need any makeup because there’s nothing but uncontainable electricity at the heart of 10,000 Volts. As it turns out, the man who once sang “Shock Me” is as much of a livewire as ever in 2024 and beyond.
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