Danish heavy metal legend King Diamond announced his first North American tour in four years. Aside from that, he also announced his thirteenth studio album titled The Institute set to be released in 2020. It will be his first album since 2007’s Give Me Your Soul…Please. Plenty of heavy metal maniacs were excited for the King’s return to the USA and either sold out or packed every stop on the tour. Support acts came from Uncle Acid and the Deadbeats and Idle Hands. The second to last stop on the tour was the Grove in Anaheim, California and it was set to be an eventful night.
As King Diamond prepared to go on stage, you couldn’t help but notice the beautiful stage setup with stairs and what looked like an asylum corridor made up most of the stage. There was a sudden change in temperature in the venue as the atmosphere got cold as the lights went out. The packed venue cheered as the asylum door was opened and an asylum nurse came out wheeling KD on a stretcher as if he was a patient. After a little while, KD woke up and walked around in a zombie-like state before being handed his traditional microphone made of bones in the shape of a cross. The rest of the band joined him on stage as they started their show with the popular hit The Candle from their 1986 debut album, Fatal Portrait. Right away, you can hear KD‘s signature falsetto singing style which shows his impressive vocal range. The intro track Funeral played over the speakers as KD had a coffin with the name Abigail written on it. KD opened the coffin to reveal a doll made to look like the character Abigail from his sophomore album of the same name. After talking along with the intro track, KD drove his knife into Abigail and cast her back into the coffin. Afterwards, KD started on another one of their greatest hits Arrival followed by A Mansion in Darkness. Both songs are from the album Abigail which many believe is KD‘s best work and is one of the greatest concept albums in metal. Even though Halloween had come and gone, that didn’t stop KD from playing another one of their biggest tracks, Halloween. What a great song it was and had fans singing along and raising their horns. Another intro track Out From the Asylum from the Them album was played over the speakers as a mysterious old woman in a wheelchair made her way to the stage. KD fans know what was coming next as the band next played another one of their best songs, Welcome Home. This song is often most associated with KD the most as fans love singing along to the line, “Grandmaaaa!”. The next track was The Invisible Guests, the follow up to Welcome Home. This song has finally found its way back into being played live as it hasn’t been played since 2006. Both songs feature amazing guitar work and solos from guitar god Andy Larocque. Another great hit Sleepless Nights was played before KD called it a night and ended the show with The Lake, a song that hasn’t been performed live since 1986. It was great to see such gems be brought back to life by the King. KD finished up the show, the left the stage. The fans stayed, screamed, and shouted for KD to come back out. After a brief break, KD came back out to play, Burn. To finally end the night, KD played their usual ending song Black Horsemen which also serves as the ending track to the Abigail album. The whole performance was beautiful and it felt so good to have KD return to the states. With a new album on the horizon, it’s no doubt that he will return to grace his American audience once again. Long live the King.