This seminal black metal act was formed in Copenhagen, Denmark, in 1980 by vocalist King Diamond (Kim Bendix Petersen, 14 June 1956, Copenhagen, Denmark) and guitarist Hank Shermann (b. Rene Krolmark, Denmark; ex-Brats). Benny Petersen (guitar), Old Nick (drums), and C. Volsing (guitar) appeared on early demos, but the original line-up coalesced around Diamond, Shermann, Michael Denner (guitar; ex-Brats), Timi Grabber Hansen (bass) and Kim Ruzz (drums). The band first appeared on the vinyl METALLIC STORM compilation with the track with Black Funeral. The four-track EP MERCYFUL FATE (aka NUNS HAVE NO FUN) saw the full debut of their heavy yet intricate guitar-based approach, and of King Diamonds unique vocal style, which ranged from deep bass growls to falsetto shrieks. MELISSA, with a name taken from the band's notorious human skull stage prop, fulfilled Mercyful Fates promise, and the band became one of the mainstays of the...
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