The CD that made KING a household name. He was even a target by so called news journalist Geraldo Rivera who has so intelligently made the connection between him and Satan when he did an investigative report of Satanism and Heavy Metal here in the U.S. back in the mid 80's. Mr. Diamond recruited Michael Denner and Timi Hansen from FATE and brought them over along with new folk Mikkey Dee and Andy La Roque and made an impact with the second release.
More evil than "Fatal Portrait" and sure in the hell more technical. Mikkey just slams the drums with no mercy and shows what he was made of. He was a force to be reckoned with. La Roque's guitar prowess was just too good to ignore. He just wailed away on every track here while The KING sang his little heart out here. Unlike "Fatal Portrait", this was the first time that KING would make this CD a complete concept story revolving around Miriam. Every track here rips the speakers apart. Mikkey's drum slamming of the highest order isn't ignored and Andy's style of guitar frenzy on tracks like "Arrival" and "The Family Ghost" are amazing. KING managed to make his first official video for "The Family Ghost" was played on MTV's "Headbanger's Ball". Remember that? Even though the video made little sense, any if at all, it was still cool to see the song come to life.
Every track here stands out, but if I was forced at gun point to choose, I would pick "Omens" for one thing. This was complex in every way from the drums to guitars, but provided plenty of melody and catchy hooks to really keep the flow going and was a jam of the highest order. "The Possession" was another favourite that showed Denner and Andy working well together and letting it rip. You can hear them go off on this one. As if this CD wasn't dark and evil enough, "Black Horsemen" ends the CD making this evil, yet fun to listen to. As you all know, this story was left wide open for a part two and took 15 years before "Abigail part 2" came into our lives.
As you may have noticed is that there are some extra tracks here. This is of course the re mastered edition of the CD that came with the "Shrine" which was previously available on "The Dark Sides"-EP. You also get rough mix versions of "A Mansion In Darkness", "The Family Ghost" and "The Possession". You can hear the slightly different arrangements and different lyrics here too. This by far is the best way to experience KING. The remasters sound cleaner and nicer. This has to be one of the best concept stories ever. It ranks right up there with QUEENSRYCHE's "Operation Mindcrime". (Online January 30, 2003)