King Diamond at the Paramount Theatre

King Diamond at The Paramount Theatre (Photo by Mike Baliterra)

Danish heavy metal legend King Diamond brought his “The Institute Tour” to a near capacity Paramount Theatre in Seattle. For fans of not just heavy metal, but also of theatrical horror themes, then this show was a must-see. 

King Diamond first gained notoriety as the make up wearing front man of one of the first bands to come from the rise of black metal, Mercyful Fate, where he was famously known for his extensive and powerful vocals, demonic growls, and falsetto screams. Shortly after the break up of Mercyful Fate in 1985, Diamond went on to form his own band under his own name. The band then released some of the most critically acclaimed and influential albums in the black metal genre. With albums such as the debut Fatal Portrait, and subsequent releases Abigail, Them, Conspiracy and The Eye, King Diamond has an ever growing fan base that has remained loyal from the band’s very beginning in 1985 to today.

The band’s current line up consists of King Diamond (vocals), Andy LaRocque (lead guitar), Mike Wead (lead guitar), Pontus Egberg (bass), and Matt Thompson (drums). King Diamond is touring across North America in preparation for their upcoming 2020 studio release The Institute.

Stage production is something that King Diamond has always excelled at, and this tour is no different. With two levels, multiple staircases, colorful lighting, and characters who form part of the show – the latest theme of the upcoming album is about a young girl who is being tormented by demons and is eventually institutionalized – as well as previous characters from earlier concept albums, the performance was a feast for multiple senses. 

The band played an awesome curated selection of tracks that spanned their catalog. Songs such as the opener “The Candle,” “Funeral,” “Voodoo,” “Halloween,” and “Welcome Home” sounded incredible live. 

Diamond dedicated the song “The Black Horseman” to his former bandmate and bassist Timi Hansen who had recently lost his long battle with cancer. 

The evening was an excellent showing of musicianship, macabre theatrics, and incredible heavy metal.

Set List
St Lucifer’s Hospital (from tape)
The Candle
Behind These Walls
Funeral (from tape)
A Mansion in Darkness
Let It Be Done (from tape)
Masquerade of Madness
Out from the Asylum (from tape)
Welcome Home
The Invisible Guests
Sleepless Nights
The Lake

Black Horsemen (dedicated to Timi Hansen)
Something Weird (from tape)