Hair Metal Mansion

ACE FREHLEY - Origins, Vol 1 - Hair Metal Mansion Album Review

Hair Metal Mansion correspondent "The Music God" CJ Plain checks in with the following:

Origins, Vol 1
(Steamhammer/SPV Records)

As someone that has always been more of a fan of Ace's solo stuff over the Kiss material, I was interested in what this might sound like. I've always enjoyed Ace's solo work for its peculiar idiosyncrasies.

This is Ace's first crack at a collection of cover songs and truthfully, it's sort of a mixed bag. The record kicks off with the classic from Cream "White Room". It's a big, booming cover that stays true to the original while adding a modern feel. Track 2, his take on The Rolling Stones "Street Fighting Man", was D.O. A. from the beginning. I detest the Stones and couldn't force myself to listen to the whole thing.

Track 3 finds Ace joined by his first guest, John 5, for Jimi Hendrix's 'Spanish Castle Magic." It's a good rendition thanks to John's addition and definitely has that Jimi vibe. Track 4, " Fire and Water", is the first of the tracks to totally miss the mark. The music itself is decent but the vocals fall really flat and do not compliment the song at all.

So goes it for the rest of the record. There's some really great hits here and some major misses. The Gary Moore classic, "Emerald", is the biggest HIT for me. Ace is joined by Slash on the track and they nail a near perfect rendition of it. "Parasite" is also a great upgrade over the original where he is once again joined by John 5.

There's a fair share of no go's here as well. "Wild Thing" featuring Lita Ford is a mess and "Magic Carpet Ride" is nothing that I ever want to hear again. The other songs are not terrible but really add nothing to the originals.

In the end, you have a collection of songs that I wouldn't call vital to own, but also not a waste of money if you happen to be an Ace fan. It's a fun project for Ace to clear his palette while gearing up for the next set of originals. Depending on your personal stance on cover songs, you will probably either love or hate this. I have a feeling this is going to get the same kind of reviews that Joan Jett got when she did her covers collection.

- "The Music God" CJ Plain

Courtesy of Hair Metal Mansion,

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