Frehley's Comet was essentially former Kiss guitarist Ace Frehley's late-'80s/mid-'90s solo project -- with a revolving door of members, Frehley was the only constant member. The seeds for Frehley's solo project were planted with the success of his 1978 solo album (all four Kiss members issued solo albums simultaneously), with Frehley's being the best of the bunch, and the only one to spawn a hit single, "New York Groove." With his growing unhappiness with the unfocused direction Kiss was headed in by the early '80s, Frehley officially left the group in 1982. But Frehley was slow to get his solo career up and running, playing only a handful of East Coast dates in late 1984 that resulted in a failed recording contract with the Bronze label (the company went out of business shortly after Frehley signed on).
Frehley was eventually signed to Megaforce Records, forming Frehley's Comet along with guitarist/vocalist Todd Howarth (replacing original member Richie Scarlet), bassist John Regan, and drummer Anton Fig. The quartet issued its well-received self-titled debut in 1987, nearly hitting the Top 40 as longtime Kiss fans welcomed back the MIA guitarist. 1988 saw a pair of releases from the group, the five-track EP Live +1 and their full-length sophomore effort, Second Sighting, as Fig returned to his regular drum job (as part of the house band on [RoviLink="VW"]Late Night With David Letterman) and was replaced by ex-Eric Clapton skinsman Jamie Oldaker. The album was an obvious attempt to zero in on the then-burgeoning pop metal movement (M+¦tley Cr++e, Def Leppard, etc.), but proved to be a disappointment both musically and commercially -- not even an opening spot on a summer-long tour with Iron Maiden could resuscitate sales.
However, 1989 saw Frehley return strong with Trouble Walking, produced by the same gentleman who manned the boards on his 1978 Kiss solo album and Frehley's Comet, Eddie Kramer. The album faired better than its predecessor (a remake of ELO's "Do Ya" even enjoyed some airtime on MTV), and signaled the return of original Frehley's Comet guitarist Richie Scarlet, but failed to replicate the success of Frehley's previous masked band. Now completely a solo vehicle for Frehley with little input from its other members, Frehley's Comet called it a day shortly thereafter, as Frehley and Scarlet would tour together throughout the remainder of the decade, until Frehley re-joined Kiss for their successful reunion tour in 1996 and beyond. The late '90s saw the release of two Frehley's Comet compilations, 12 Picks and Loaded Deck, both of which contained highlights and previously unreleased material. ~ Greg Prato
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