Richard V. : Former Kiss guitarist Ace Frehley was looking for a title for his new solo album. His old band mate Gene Simmons proposed to name the album 'Spaceman', after the nickname Frehley had during his days in Kiss. That simple title reflects the content perfectly because the songs on this album are way too simple.
Simmons not only came up with the title, but also contributed to two songs, namely ‘Without You I'm Nothing’ that opens the album and ’Your Wish Is My Command.’ The sing-along chorus of the latter bears the signature of The Demon. As is often the case with Frehley, the music is pretty straightforward. Sometimes that works out well, but not this time. On his 'Anomaly' album there were a lot of strong songs, but those are hard to find on 'Spaceman'. The compositions are of unimaginable simplicity such as the single 'Rockin' With The Boys'. Add to that the flat vocals and the recipe for a disappointing album is complete.
After insignificant songs like 'Pursuit Of Rock and Roll' and the uplifting 'I Want Go Back', you long for the energy of songs like 'Rip It Out' and 'Speeding Back To My Baby'. After his history with alcohol it is quite an achievement that Frehley is still making albums forty years after his solo debut, but outside the fanatical Kiss fan base nobody will notice this time. On 'Mission To Mars' the pace goes up a bit and we finally hear some energy along with a typical Frehley solo. That song proves that Frehley is not completely done yet. The revived enthusiasm immediately disappears during the dull song 'Off My Back'. 'Quantum Flux' is the instrumental closing track and holds up the tradition well.
As a former Kiss fan (with Ace being my favorite band member), I am sorry to say that 'Spaceman' is just a mediocre album that, thanks to a few songs and several good solos, barely scores a B minus.