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» King Diamond

King Diamond
Born: 1985
Active: '80s, '90s, 2000s Major
Styles: Progressive Metal, Heavy Metal, Neo-Classical Metal
Instrument: Vocals Representative
Albums: "The Best of King Diamond", "Abigail", "Them" Representative
Songs: "Abigail", "The Possession", "Arrival"

UPC Type Title
016861878825 CD Abigail
4024572322212 Vinyl Abigail
016861811723 CD Abigail (25th Anniversary)
039841437928 CD Abigail II-Revenge
016861835620 CD Abigail/Fatal Portrait
016861834128 CD Best of King Diamond
016861829322 CD Conspiracy/Them
016861878726 (i) CD Conspiracy
4527583003847 (i) CD Conspiracy
039841449921 CD Deadly Lullabye Live
016861878627 CD Eye
016861878924 (i) CD Fatal Portrait
039841466621 CD Give Me Your Soul Please
039841703221 CD Graveyard
039841477726 CD Graveyeard-Rei
039841477924 CD House of God-Reissue
039841430820 CD House of God
016861762124 (i) CD King Diamond: Complete Roadrunner Collection 1986-..
039841444520 CD Puppet Master
4028466114006 (i) CD Puppet Master
039841527018 Vinyl Puppet Master
039841524611 (i) Vinyl Puppet Master
039841477627 CD Spider's Lullabye
039841422924 CD Spiders Lullabye
4527583003830 (i) CD Them
4024572322229 Vinyl Them
039841414929 CD Voodoo
039841477825 CD Voodoo-Reissue
803341159525 Vinyl We Live

Biography: Widely regarded as the finest vocalist in all of metal (who possesses a multi-octave range), theatrical rocker King Diamond first rose to prominence as a member of Mercyful Fate before launching a solo career on his own. Born Kim Bendix Petersen in Denmark on June 14, 1956, the future King Diamond was originally drawn to theatrically based hard rock due to such trailblazers as Alice Cooper, and soon began fronting local bands in the '70s, including a punk metal outfit called the Brats. Shortly thereafter, the group mutated into Mercyful Fate, consisting of members Hank Shermann (guitar), Michael Denner (guitar), Timi Hansen (bass), and Kim Ruzz (drums), in addition to Diamond. Diamond, by this time, had developed an interest in the occult, which reflected in the new group's subject matter, as the frontman began wearing makeup (which resembled a cross between his hero Cooper and Kiss' Gene Simmons).

After several demos made their way across Europe (and even reaching America via an underground tape-trading network among metalheads), Mercyful Fate issued a self-titled four-track EP before inking a recording contract with Roadrunner Records. The quintet issued a pair of thrash metal classics, 1983's Melissa and 1984's Don't Break the Oath, as Diamond's satanic lyrics created quite a stir at the time with outsiders. Despite a promising future, Mercyful Fate broke up when a common musical style couldn't be agreed on (Diamond wanted to continue with thrash metal, while a few of the others wanted to explore more mainstream-oriented hard rock).

Undeterred, Diamond launched a solo project, which was almost identical in approach, both musically and visually, as his former band. The group's original lineup included such former Mercyful Fate bandmates as Hansen and Denner, but over time, bandmembers would come and go (the only constant member besides their leader has been guitarist Andy LaRocque). King Diamond's first three solo releases, 1986's Fatal Portrait, 1987's Abigail, and 1988's Them, are widely considered to be Diamond's finest, as the singer continued to issue further releases until the early '90s (1989's Conspiracy, 1990's The Eye). It was also around this time that Diamond found his name embroiled in controversy -- due to a Geraldo Rivera TV special on music with supposed "hidden messages," and when Kiss' Simmons served a lawsuit against the singer, claiming that the makeup design Diamond had been using too closely resembled the one that Simmons used in the '70s and early '80s, which resulted in an out of court settlement and with Diamond being forced to modify his makeup design.

Come the early '90s, Mercyful Fate was constantly being name-checked as a prime influence by just about every new thrash and death metal band, which led to a re-formation of the original group (save for drummer Ruzz), and such further releases as 1993's In the Shadows (which included a remake of their early track, "Return of the Vampire," with Metallica's Lars Ulrich sitting in on drums), 1994's Time, 1996's Into the Unknown, 1998's Dead Again, and 1999's 9. By the middle of the '90s, Diamond began issuing solo albums again (simultaneously with his Fate output), as such titles as 1995's The Spider's Lullabye, 1996's The Graveyard, 1998's Voodoo, 2000's House of God, and 2002's Abigail II: The Revenge were issued. ~ Greg Prato, Rovi