King Diamond, when Mercyful Fate fell apart in the mid eighties somewhere, went on to make several classic albums such as "Abigail" and "Them". The albums were always more story-based kindof concept albums, but that never hurt the songwriting or the compactness of the songs. Starting with "The Graveyard", however, King Diamond albums more and more became like stage plays in a metal setting. "Voodoo" had such passages, too, and so does his latest, "House of God".

Although I will continue to buy these albums, they have for quite a few years now had nothing new to offer. The songs sound like they've been done elsewhere before, King's vocal lines change little. The only thing that really varies is the story - this time a fairly credible story of how a certain character did not die on the cross but was instead taking to the South of France, where an interesting story unfolds. Perhaps King Diamond ought to concentrate more on writing lyrics without music. I'd suggest a book. Musically everything is much in order (he's got ace bassist David Harbour, for example, playing on this album) but there is too little in the way of surprise or novelty.



Written July 2000


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