Former Kiss guitarist Ace Frehley has chastised his ex-bandmate Gene Simmons for making controversial comments about depression just days after the death of funnyman Robin Williams.

The veteran rock star was the focus of a major backlash last week (ends17Aug14) when he suggested depression sufferers should kill themselves in an interview just days after the actor's suicide following a long battle with the disease.

Simmons was discussing his relationship with Frehley, who suffered from substance abuse and depression in the past, and the former Kiss guitarist has now hit back at his former bandmate for making insensitive remarks.

Frehley tells, "The press makes it out like we hate each other, (but) I could go over to any of their (former Kiss bandmates') houses and hang out. I try not to get involved with all the rhetoric, but sometimes I can't hold back. I mean, Gene has the balls to go on the Internet the other day and say, 'Look, if you're a depressed person, kill yourself.' I don't think Robin Williams' family is too happy about his statements, you know?

"He used to say to me in the '70s every time I did something stupid, like I crashed a car or I got loaded when I shouldn't, he'd say, 'Ace, you're shootin' yourself in the foot.' Well, you can print, 'Hey Gene, you're shootin' yourself in the foot a lot lately.' But I love the guy! I swear to God."

Simmons has publicly apologised for his comments.