by Alex Lloyd Gross
It’s not everyday a rock legend plays an intimate show, but that is exactly what happened Friday 13, 2022, at the Keswick Theater in Glenside, The former lead guitar player for KISS certainly took care of business. This show was long awaited. Ace Frehley has not been playing shows in this area due to COVID. However, he is back and did not miss a beat.
Before we talk abut Ace, he had a relatively unknown band called Flipp open for him. Members of this band were in the parking lot before the show and no one knew who they were. Some people thought they would go eat, miss the opening band and then saunter in about 9:00 PM just in time to see Ace. Those people did themselves a disservice. This band was actually good. Based out of Minneapolis, they had a long bus ride to play. They sound a bit like Cheap Trick. They are not heavy metal, they are not punk. They just rock. They met the crowd after their set in the lobby. However, they should have lowered the price of their CD from $25.00 . They would have sold more. They were selling posters for $75.00. For an unknown band, that was a stretch and they maybe sold one.
At 9:00 PM Ace was introduced. It was not polite to sit in a chair when Ace is playing. So everyone stood up and remained on their feet. From the opener “Rip It Out” to KISS classics suck as “Hard Times and “Detroit Rock City” ACE was non stop on point. Throughout the show, ACE and his band mates were tossing guitar picks into the crowd. Sometimes they were caught, other times, fans would scramble, and illuminate their phones on the ground, hoping to find one.
ACE was on stage for about 90 minutes. He has so much material to play, fans should get together, book him for a private concert and not let him off the stage for three hours. That way songs like “Insane”, “Into The Night”, “Troublewalkin” , “Sisters” etc could be played. ACE Frehley’s latest record, Origins 2 is an album of cover songs. The single was “Space Truckin”, a Deep Purple cover. The video is awesome but the song was not played.
ACE was not in his signature make up. During “New York Groove” his lights in his guitar flashed. During “Shock Me”, he played a blistering solo that saw his guitar smoke. Those were the only special effects during the show. He really did not need anything, just a stage and some light. His band was tight. Even while ACE was changing guitars, his band played a few chords of “Loves There From KISS”, the instrumental from the first album. Some die hard KISS fans might know the songs as “Acrobat”. Even the opening chords of the song was a treat to those in attendance.
If this band comes to your town, you should without a doubt go see them. ACE Frehley is a legend. The original lead guitar player for KISS. There is no criticism about this show except it was not long enough. When you like a band and they are on stage, 90 minutes will seem like 15. ACE Frehley had merch for sale but no CD’s. He is a musician and those in attendance are of the age where they still buy CD’s and even collect records and tapes. He would have sold quite a few had they been offered for sale. Those with the dollars would be able to meet ACE after the show and he would have signed those CD’s. albums and cassettes.
As the country is coming back from COVID that shut everything down, a good ass kicking concert is just what people need to get back to normal and ACE and his band are only too happy to deliver.