Author Topic: King Diamond here...  (Read 73908 times)

Offline Livia Zita

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King Diamond here...
« on: June 27, 2007, 11:41:33 pm »
This is King Diamond here.

I'm writing under Livia's username for now.

Hail to all of you. I've been checking up on the postings to get a feel for what all of you think about the brand new album, and I'm really glad to see that all the hard work was not in vain. It's such a great kick in the ass to see that by far the majority here has the same opinion about the album as we in the band have ourselves.
Of course it's never cool to find out that not everyone of our fans enjoy what we feel is our strongest ever, but I guess it's extremely hard to please everybody's taste. So for those of you who have stated disappointment, maybe the next album will give you more of the entertainment style that you're after if you hang around 'till then.

I know we'll be talking Sunday, but I just saw a couple of posting today that really bothered me because they were quite negative and totally untrue, the kind of posting that start bad rumours:

One posting stated that Livia and I sing a lot simultaneously on the new album, and that she sings all the high parts because my voice can't do what it used to do.
ANSWER: First of all there is not one single spot on this new album where Livia and I sing at the same time, whether in harmony or not, unlike what we did on The Puppet Master album.
For those of you who are interested in who is singing what on the new album, it's quite simple if you have the lyrics. Everything in quotation marks is Livia's voice and Livia's voice only. Everything that is not in quotation marks is me. The amount Livia sings on this album is about the same as on The Puppet Master, but it is spaced out very differently as the lyrics will clearly show you. Livia has big blocks in the intro and on Moving On. Apart from that, Livia mostly does two-three lines in the songs she's singing on, and about half the songs I sing completely alone.
Hope this clarifies who sings what.
I would like to state once and for all that the strength of my voice has never been better, and my range has never been higher.

Regarding the strength, let me tell you how my vocals were recorded:
Over a three week period I sang in the studio Monday and Tuesday 6 1/2 hours straight each day, only interrupted by fetching a cup of coffee every hour or so. Wednesday was used to rest the voice, and then Thursday and Friday I sang again for approximately 6 1/2 hours each day straight. First Saturday was used to write the lyrics for the song "The Girl In The Bloody Dress", which might seem quick, but keep in mind that most of the lyric was already there in all my notes. First Sunday was rest.
Second week was identical to the first week with the exception of writing the lyrics to "Moving On".
Third week, same schedule, but no lyrics to write.

Regarding the range of my voice:
I can reach higher with better control than ever before. It might not be that noticeable since some of the highest falsettos often are merely a part of an 8 voice 3-4 harmony choir part.
One thing that I kind of knew when Andy and I made the decision to go a specific way with the sound during the mixing, was that my voice would sound much more natural and much more detailed than before, thereby not losing all the emotions and special moods that the vocals were done in. In the past we used to follow normal standard procedures which means using lots of compression on everything which is a thing that can be good for some kinds of music, but for music that has so many different moods and sound that must be fitted into the sound picture (drums, bass, two to four rythm guitars, guitar solos, lead vox and lead double vox plus 8 backing vocals plus Livia's vox plus the occasional violins, cellos, harpsichord, organ/church organ), as we have, compression can really work against you because it has a tendency to wash things out and thereby losing detail and clarity. We chose to go with way less compression than is standard.
Some of this shit I'm writing now might not make too much sense unless you are familiar with recording procedures but to try and make a long story short, the difference between the overall sound of everything on this new album, compared to earlier albums, is that everything we recorded can be heard. Nothing got washed away. As you might have noticed, everything Hal does on his bass can be heard, unlike most albums that are produced today.
Regarding the vocals: When it comes to the falsetto vocals, they are not as piercing in sound as they often have been before for the exact reasons I stated earlier with the compression, but even more so because we left my vocals completely alone, meaning that no equalization was used on my vocals this time. They are one hundred percent natural sounding unlike earlier where the standard often was to cut away low sound frequencies to clear up the voice because of all the compression and then add some mid-high frequencies again for the same reason to bring back some of the lost clarity due to the excessive use of compression. This procedure often resulted in losing the emotions that were originally in the recorded vocals, and that the falsettos often became unnaturally high pitched and almost irritating to even my ears.
There are in fact more and higher falsettos on this album than ever before (especially in the backing vocals), but because of the above, they might not seem as penetrating but actually more pleasing to the ear, I think. I guess it's a matter of taste, but it sure brings out a lot more of the orginal emotions in the voice.
I hope some of this made sense. It's really hard to explain in writing.

WHY DO I HOLD MATT BACK?   I DON'T!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Again, there are things being posted which is nothing more than guessing without any reality to back it up. Of course none of you know how things work within the band whether we are recording, on tour, or whatever. But I guess this is a good way to inform you.
Regarding drums: The procedure is that Matt gets the raw demos and usually works on the songs for months before we go into the studio. He usually has at least 4-5 full different versions of drumming for each song. When recording a song, Matt will usually warm up while playing all his different versions which we already at that point start recording. Matt will come into the control room where Andy and I, but mostly me and then Matt will listen through all his different suggestions. About 90% of the drumming that you hear on a song is a mix of all of Matt's different suggestions plus some of my suggestions and occasionally Andy's, and I can assure you that some of the suggestions I have are not simple. There are lots of examples on this album if you really pay attention. Just as a tiny example of what might pass right by you if you don't pay attention is for instance the kick drum pattern in the "sneaky" parts of "The Girl In The Bloody Dress". You try figure that pattern out. I must say that to my amazement, Matt picked it out perfect in less than 2 minutes. After Matt heard the final mixes, he called me and commented the following "I can't believe you let me get away with this!" I replied "Get away with what? It's never a question of getting away with anything and you know how much I enjoy when you come up with some of these 'out there ideas' that I would never have imagined would enhance a certain riff or add to the song as a whole." Further, in King Diamond we always test any idea no matter how crazy it might seem before we decide if it works for a song or not.
There's absolutely no holding anybody back, and I can guarantee all of you out there that everybody in the band has the attitude that we all play our different parts for the good of the songs and not with the attitude of musicians with big egos who just want to show off regardless of whether what they do fits a certain song or not. There are and have always been plenty of space for everyone to show what they can do without jeopardizing the flow of a song.
It's very much the same procedure when it comes to Hal's bass parts. I'm very pleased that what he does on this album is so easy to hear because he literally blows me away with all the stuff he brought to this album. I do have a little finger in some of the bass parts but for the majority it is Hal and Hal's ideas you hear. Hal's quote "these are the best bass lines I've ever put down on a record and you can actually hear them too". I agree a million percent. A quote from Andy "I don't think I have composed solos of this quality since 'The Eye'". Again, I totally agree. A quote from Mike "I have never been so inspired to compose solos as I am for this new album." Mike, you outdid yourself in my opinion. Your solos fucking rock!!! You know how I told you, that you made the hair stand on my arms when I heard your revised solo for "Shapes Of Black". Your first solo for that song was certainly not bad but it didn't quite bring the right mood to that piece, and one phone call later. King: "Could you try and do a second version where you construct your solo more around the keyboard theme that goes in the background than the actual front rythm guitars?" You sent back something that was way beyond what I had expected and hit the nail so fucking right on the head.
The way we all worked together at any stage of the making of this new album is by far the best I have ever experienced. Everybody was on the same page the whole way. I already told you band guys this personally but this is more for all of you here on the website.
One thing that not many of you probably think about, is the fact that Andy at this point in time has completely incorporated my technique of playing guitar into his own technique, and on this album it has been extremely gratifying for me to hear the songs I wrote played a hundred percent the way they were intended.
For Livia I think she did one hell of a job portraying the character of "The Little Girl In The Bloody Dress".

Time to go rest my back but before I fumble my way back into by bedroom with all the shapes of black waiting on my bed I would like to say on behalf of everyone in the band, that we sincerely feel that this is our best performance ever.
Some will hopefully agree, others might not agree, but at least give the album more than just one listen in the car cause that way you are going to miss half of what's in there. I personally feel that this album is one that needs a few more than just 3 listens before you really start to find all the stuff that was put into it.

It's good nightmare time for me now, hope to talk to some of you on Sunday.

Stay Heavy,

Working in the backgrounds :)

Offline CorpseWithoutASoul

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Re: King Diamond here...
« Reply #1 on: June 27, 2007, 11:42:51 pm »
HAIL TO THE KING!!!! Get well soon man!

 :king: :king: :king:

Offline maarten.

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Re: King Diamond here...
« Reply #2 on: June 28, 2007, 12:04:39 am »
This is King Diamond here.

I would like to state once and for all that the strength of my voice has never been better, and my range has never been higher.

haha, it is indeed, your voice blew me away last year in Tilburg, Holland :king:

thanks for the info, it's always nice to hear something from the musicians themselfs

take care of yourself man

Neffie's penguin's

Offline mario

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Re: King Diamond here...
« Reply #3 on: June 28, 2007, 12:16:26 am »
hey, King himself here in the forum with us!!!!!  :king:
Thanks so much for all this information and get well soon!!!! \m/

Offline Satan's Portrait

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Re: King Diamond here...
« Reply #4 on: June 28, 2007, 12:30:26 am »
King, it's a shame that I won't be able to chat on Sunday, since I do have some questions that I want to ask you that aren't often asked in interviews.

But it's great to finally hear from you after being part of the fanclub for some good years now. Can't wait to see you in San Antonio again on the 8th of March!

BTW, I think that the new album is the best KD release since The Spider's Lullabye, or even The Eye. While Abigail II and The Puppet Master were excellent releases, this one just takes the bait!

See you on tour :king:

Offline desecrator_of_soul

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Re: King Diamond here...
« Reply #5 on: June 28, 2007, 12:32:29 am »
Graced by the King  :king:
Get well soon master!!!  \m/

Offline Shagr

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Re: King Diamond here...
« Reply #6 on: June 28, 2007, 12:33:18 am »
Just came to work, tired as HELL, opened the forum and what do I see? Thank you King, you really made my day. Again.
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Offline Blackest

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Re: King Diamond here...
« Reply #7 on: June 28, 2007, 12:36:18 am »
Hi King!!! Is that really you? It's amazing!!! :king:
How are you?

It's unbelievable how evrey new album is better every time, you are the greatest of all! There's no one single day without I listen your music, you don't know how much I love it!!! :king:
And let me tell you that the actual formation band is the best ever!!!
And you are right, your voice is every time more powerfull, as we all can see in live!
I can't wait to have the whole album and to know the entire new story and every detail of it!!!
Get better soon, we all are waiting for you!!!
Let us know good knews about your back!
Greetings from the Italian Coven, we love you!!!


Offline camarochick

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Re: King Diamond here...
« Reply #8 on: June 28, 2007, 12:44:19 am »
Please take care of yourself King. Thank you for the first hand insight into the new album as well. I know I am enjoying it immensely!  The sound quality is amazing and I love the fact everyone can be heard clearly.   

Offline RipperBendix

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Re: King Diamond here...
« Reply #9 on: June 28, 2007, 12:47:26 am »
what a great way to start the day. Opening the Coven and our master was here.
Get well soon, King! And thanks for dropping by!   :king:
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Offline eviltrance

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Re: King Diamond here...
« Reply #10 on: June 28, 2007, 01:13:18 am »
King, you are the man. New album is amazing, one of your best. Get well and make a movie for me and my friend bob!

Offline Magistralium

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Re: King Diamond here...
« Reply #11 on: June 28, 2007, 01:14:24 am »
Hail, King!

It's amazing, that you over and over again have the spirit and strenght to explain the things considering the new album.. over and over again  :D: With interviews - I guess it's your job, but coming here among the fans is just beyond words, man! Pure energy!

All the best to you! Hopefully you get your back problems fixed!!! "See" you on Sunday (and when you get here in Finland someday again)!

Stay true!
What you think you can hold as your own
Will be taken away

Offline Countess De La Fey

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Re: King Diamond here...
« Reply #12 on: June 28, 2007, 01:21:56 am »
King! It's a pleasure to finally see you here! Thanks for the info,this is the thing I needed to make my day.

Rest and hope you will get better soon!

I didn't get to buy it yet,but be damn sure I will! \m/

We're staying as heavy as we can :king:

HAIL! :king:
\m/  \m/  \m/  \m/  \m/  \m/  \m/  \m/  \m/

Offline Horrorscope

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Re: King Diamond here...
« Reply #13 on: June 28, 2007, 01:44:22 am »
It is Killer to see you posting here \m/
Thanks for the great music and I wish you the best with getting well.
Take care!

Offline fathermalone

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Re: King Diamond here...
« Reply #14 on: June 28, 2007, 02:02:42 am »
Hey King I think its cool that you explained everything to us.... In my opinion I love the direction the music is going and I understand what you meant about the vocals, your voice is sounding as strong as ever.... This is definetly one of your greatest efforts yet and I am not the least bit dissapointed ..... Feel better and talk to you on sunday!


Offline Patrick S Oneil

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Re: King Diamond here...
« Reply #15 on: June 28, 2007, 02:16:15 am »
Interesting post about all of the "shit" that goes on in the studio  :D

I am still wrestling with compression myself... trying to learn its strengths and weaknesses in different applications. I think it has its place, but as you mentioned it can be very difficult to make it work well in a very thick mix. You have always been one of my biggest musical influences, so I guess it makes sense that I usually end up with a very thick mix and then run into some of those same compression riddles. I have not gotten the chance to take your new album for a spin yet, but I will very soon.

Thanks for the behind the scenes info. I look forward to seeing you guys on tour next year in Southern California.

Take care,


Offline CorpseWithoutASoul

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Re: King Diamond here...
« Reply #16 on: June 28, 2007, 02:22:56 am »
Just wanted to mention that King Diamond has inspired me over the years in so many ways. In all sincerity, your music has helped through so many shitty and stressful times King. I just wanted to express my deepest appreciation to you for all the wonderfully uplifting and energetic music that you have given to all of us. I think that I speak for most of us hear when I say thanks for everything.

Most of all-- thanks for giving a fuck enough about the fans to come on this forum and speak to us directly on Sunday. That in itself is fucking awesome. You are truly a class act all the way.

« Last Edit: June 28, 2007, 02:23:57 pm by CorpseWithoutASoul »

Offline over

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Re: King Diamond here...
« Reply #17 on: June 28, 2007, 02:56:01 am »
King, you're the best, thx for your post!  :king: :D:

Hope you'll get better soon! (let's hope you'll find so energy while you're resting to begin working on a new album :D :gah: )

All of us can't wait to see you on tour, so take care of your back, we love you  :king:

Offline paulcoz

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Re: King Diamond here...
« Reply #18 on: June 28, 2007, 03:32:54 am »
This has got to be the best post ever on the forums! :D

Offline Nefarious_Priest

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Re: King Diamond here...
« Reply #19 on: June 28, 2007, 04:24:46 am »
Wow that was so cool. I just stumbled upon this by chance. King you rule man!! You can do no wrong in my book!! I haven't got the new album yet since isn't due here until tomorrow but from what i've heard of Never Ending Hill and from other people and of course yourself it sounds like a killer album to me!

Hail King Diamond!!  :king:
\m/ Abbath \m/ \m/ Demonaz \m/ \m/ Horgh \m/

Offline Mzzz

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Re: King Diamond here...
« Reply #20 on: June 28, 2007, 04:26:48 am »
Tomorrow I will run to the store and I will buy the new CD!!!  :king:
Get well soon  :D
You're the best!
I am many, we are one, the highest.

Offline EmperorPalpatine

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Re: King Diamond here...
« Reply #21 on: June 28, 2007, 04:35:16 am »
Thnks for your post, King :fingers:
Cant wait to buy an album \m/

Offline theziggurat

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Re: King Diamond here...
« Reply #22 on: June 28, 2007, 05:33:12 am »

You are a mastermind!!!!!!!! Keep the horror flowing!!!!!!!!!

 \m/ \m/ \m/ \m/ \m/ \m/ \m/ \m/ \m/ \m/ \m/ \m/
Mythos Metal Madness!

Offline zhakke

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Re: King Diamond here...
« Reply #23 on: June 28, 2007, 05:51:37 am »
Woah... I've Been King Diamond's fan for a while now but i just registered here and.. wtf, king actually posts here? :O Its rare that band members actually post to forums or anything like that. I should get new album tomorrow so no comments about that yet, but i believe that its going to be good  :king: And Hail to all forum members and king \o/

Offline SloJoel

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Re: King Diamond here...
« Reply #24 on: June 28, 2007, 06:10:06 am »
Thanks for the post! It made my day  :)
Hope your back gets better soon.
Dutt Dutt