Tuesday, November 5, 2019

Live Review : King Diamond @ the Tabernacle

The second date of their tour fell on the Tabernacle in Atlanta. It is a fitting venue since it used to be a church so still has the stained glass windows. I had excellent seat in the VIP section so I was on the first balcony on the right had side overlooking the stage. I will start by saying it might sound like a dream gig opening for King Diamond  For the first opener Idle hands who went on at 6:50 found the audience at 30 percent capacity. I think this works for them as they are a young band who played their instruments well, but still seem to be gathering their footing playing in larger venues to crowds  of this kind on larger stages. They had one guitarist who was more flamboyant in their performance  seemed like they had been plucked from an 80s hair metal band. Watching them it was clear they were all distinct individuals with separate influences.  Their drummer was the star of the show with jazz like nuance to his playing.It might sound like a dream gig opening for King Diamond, but you are talking about the greatest metal front man next to Bruce Dickinson, so the singer of Idle Hands who had a more Jim Morrison by way of the Cult  thing going on was up against insurmountable odds . He was probably wondering what he had gotten himself into.

Up next was Uncle Acid and the Dead beats. Everyone I spoke to was aware of the buzz about the band. I like their studio output myself so was curious to see how this translated live. The result was something more heavier and in line with stoner doom rock than the kind of creepy 60s  vibe I get from their albums. Perhaps playing for a more overt metal crowd prompted this. I still recognized the song they just came in on a denser cloud of distortion than expected. Some of this was due to the more stripped down approach, there were not keyboards to help give the more 60s sound. The dual vocal approach was unexpected. They were tight was a response I got most from members of the audience I talked to. They are headliners in their own right, so it is no surprise the are a well oiled machine on stage. The movies projected behind them were surreal 60s spectacles I would not wanted to have seen tripping. I do not think a King Diamond show would be one I would want to drop acid at and when I was doing drugs I think I might have been drunk or stoned, but do not recall anything stronger when seeing him,

  This show now marks the 8th time I have seen King Diamond. It is not mystery if you are a regular reader that he is one of my all time favorite artists. I have been listening to him for over 30 years now.  When I saw Iron Maiden they are pros and big energy, but King Diamond loves what he does, who he becomes and the fact this  shown through after he got the news  earlier that day his friend and former bass player Timi Hansen died is unbelievable.By the time he went on the floor was packed and I was glad I was in the balcony.  The stage was made to look like an asylum where he upcoming album "the Institute"  is set.   He did play a new song from this album called "Masquerade of Madness" which was pretty heavy and fits nicely along sie his other works, making me look forward to the new album. The bulk of the set drew from the first few albums of his solo career "Fatal Portrait", "Abigail" , "Them", "Conspiracy" and "the Eye" along with the title track from "Voodoo". Not only does he go out on tour in his 60s, but picks his most vocally demanding work to sing. He knows the fans want his and delivered.

He had his female back up singer who did join him to double up some of the higher parts. In the bast while he has sounded great, I wondered if this was because he could not pull it off by himself, but there were several sections where he pulled off his upper register by himself no help needed pretty flawlessly. Hitting notes Bruce Dickinson  ascend Rob Halford can no longer dream of at their age. I have been an advocate since teenage years that Kind Diamond is the greatest metal singer ever and this confirmed years of flying his flag. Did he have effects on his voice ? Yes, but so do the two singers I previously mentioned. They band was great the bass player who was the new kid the past 3 times I have seen King Diamond has now really settled in. I was surprised given Timi's death that they did not play any Mercyful Fate, though he dedicated the last song "Black Horsemen" to him and said from this point on it would be dedicated to him. Overall this one was on the best shows I would not say the number one show, but in the top 3 King Diamond concerts I have attended. 

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