When Mercyful Fate broke up in the 1980s, singer King Diamond went solo and this is his 11th studio album. He's changed a little bit over 20 years so he doesn't sound much like Mercyful Fate anymore and he has his own sound, although a lot of people think he was better back then. He also can't go as high with his voice as he used to. Like all of his cds, this one tells a scary story. This one is about some guy and some girl who get captured by some evil dude who kills people and turns their bodies into puppets for his shows.
The Band: King Diamond - vocals/keyboards
Andy LaRocque - guitar
Mike Wead - guitar
Hal Patino - bass
Matt Thompson - drums
1. Midnight- a cool intro track. It starts off with King yelling Midnight!! really high pitched. Not very long. This song starts the story telling about how he's strapped to a wall in a cellar and that he's thinking back on what happened. The rest of the story after this is a flashback on how he became a puppet. 4.5/5
2. The Puppet Master- This starts off with a good lead guitar part and has a really cool chorus. Around the middle of the song there's a crazy solo with a wah pedal. King Diamonds singing is really good on this song and there's a few spots where his voice gets as high as it can. This song tells how the main character goes to see a Christmas puppet show in Budapest. He describes the puppets as almost life size and they move without strings. He gets scared when the little drummer boy comes out because there's a cut on it's hand, and it's bleeding. 5/5
3. Magic- A fast guitar riff opens the song. King starts singing in an opera sounding voice. Then he changes to an extreme high pitched voice for part of the chorus, and then a girls voice starts singing along with him. This song also has two of the best guitar solos on the cd. They're seriously so good it's not even funny. And when I say good I don't mean hyper fast. I've never heard anyrhing like it before. This song talks about how after the show is over, he is standing outside the theater and no one else thought there was anything strange about the show. Only he and this other girl believed that it was magic. Her name is Victoria. So they started talking and they had everything in common. King ends up scoring with her right there and then it goes forward to a year later and he says that she went back to the puppet theater alone that night and she never came home. So he goes to look for her. 5/5
4. Emerencia - Starts off with a few scary sounding guitar notes and a cool drum beat. He kind of talk/sings throught this song. Theres not really much to say about it. Still a pretty good song though. In this song, the guy is hiding behind a crate behind the theater. As he is sitting there, the cellar door opens, and the puppet master's fat disgusting wife Emerencia come out. She's carring a knife and she's pulling a cart behind her. King follows her as she starts to walk, and e is wondering whats going on. Emerencia sees some homeless guy sleeping in an alley, so she goes up to him and stabs him in the chest with the knife. Then she wraps the body in a bag and pulls it back to the theater on the cart. Then she goes down into the cellar and leaves the door slightly open, so King goes into the cellar. He starts to walk down a long hallway. At the end is a door which he opens. Inside he sees something horrible. And then something hits him hard on the back of the head. 3/5
5. Blue Eyes- This song starts off with a scary sounding keyboard intro. King starts singing quietly, then he yells something that sounds kind of like "YYOW" and then the guitar comes in with a four chord thing. There's a really cool solo near the end. This is another one of my favorite songs.
It starts with the guy waking up and not knowing where he is. Then he remembers he's in the cellar and he's tied to the wall with an iron chain. As he's looking around the room he sees all these freaky looking puppets on shelves. They all have human eyes. Then he notices a pair of eyes that he recognizes. They're the eyes of Victoria. He says someone better tell him its a dream, then it goes into that awesome guitar solo. It ends with him saying how her eyes look so alive. 5/5
6. The Ritual- Opens with a good chord intro then King starts yelling something. This song has a lot of cool riffs throughout the whole thing and another really good guitar solo at the end. It's mostly a really opera like song. At this point in the story the puppet master and his wife walk into the cellar, and the guy is wondering what they're going to do. He notices human skulls and books and black candles all over the room. In the middle of the room is a white altar and there's a strange symbol on the wall. He sees tall shelves of jars filled with blood. The master starts doing an evil chant and he starts feeling strange. He gets really scared and kicks one of the shelves. One of the jars falls on the floor and the blood spills everywhere. This interupts the ritual and gives King eternal life. The master finishes the spell and trades Kings soul to a demon in exchange for magical life. 4.5/5
7. No More Me- You hear King Diamond saying "why am I strapped to this hospital bed"' and then a weird guitar rif starts. This isn't really a song, it's more of really graphic account of the puppet master cutting out King's eyeballs and putting them into a puppets head, peeling his skin off, and draining all of his blood into jars. Really disgusting but it's cool anyway. 3/5
8. Blood To Walk- This song starts out with a riff which kind of reminds of the one from No More Me. Theres also some weird yells played over it. This is a more commercial sounding song. If any of the songs were going to be played on the radio(which will probably never happen) it would be this one. It's still a good song though. Theres a really cool chorus. At this point the guy has been turned into a puppet, but he can still see through his eyes. The puppet masters wife comes and injects him and Victoria with blood from their jars, and suddenly they both come to life. They can't talk to eachother, but they communicate with their eyes. The puppet master laughs and says It worked. But thats enough for today. Put them away." 4/5
9. Darkness- starts off quietly then goes into a louder guitar riff that kind of sounds like the one from Here It Comes Again by Korn. This song has a pretty cool tune to it. Part of the chorus is done by some woman. I think it's supposed to be Victoria. This part of the story is 13 days later. The puppet master has been teaching him and victoria to move and walk again. They are kind of getting use to being there. Then the puppet master tells victoria to dance for him, and she doesn't think she can do it, but he makes her. So she gets up and falls into a shelf. 6 jars of blood fall and shatter on the ground. That pisses the puppet master right off and he says he's going to send her to Berlin. 4/5
10. So Sad - This starts with a sad sounding keyboard and then the guitar comes in playing really slowly. Thats pretty much it for the whole song. it's mostly talk/singing. The voice alternates between Kings and Victorias. They're remembering the times that they were together and how it's so sad that she has to leave. King promises her that he will find her someday. Blah bla blah. It's a pretty sad song. 4/5
11. Christmas- This begins with an exerpt from the Little Drummer Boy thats really dumb sounding. Then it gets good once the guitar comes in and plays chords down some scale. This song also has a lot of really cool guitar riffs. Especially this one in the middle that sounds awesome. If you play guitar you'll probably want to learn it. This is one of the better songs on the cd. As for the story, it's Christmas again. the puppet master is putting on his show, and this time King Diamond is the little drummer boy. He is planning to run away after the show to find Victoria and get out of there. Although there's not really much they could do since they're both evil puppets. Whatever. In the middle of the show, he suddenly falls over and the drum breaks on the stage. This also pisses off the puppet master, so he sells him to some shop somewhere. 4.5/5
12. Living Dead- This is the one song on the entire cd that I don't like. It's not a good song at all. King's doesn't sound that great, and I swear the guitar rif in this song is the same as the one from Blue Eyes. So anyway, it's a really repetitive and boring song. It's also the end of the story. The guy is still hanging on the wall in this little shop. It's been 18 years and he never saw Victoria again. Nobody will buy him because he's scary looking and his eyes follow people. He also hears rumors that the puppet master is opening another theater in London. And it's for children. 1.5/5
And thats the whole cd. Overall it's a 4.5/5. The best songs are Magic, The Puppet Master, Blue Eyes and Christmas. At least thats what I think, most of my friends don't like King Diamond because of his voice. But really, who cares if its high pitched. Get over it. He's awesome.