King Diamond - Abigail ll: The revenge 2.5/5

Reviewed: 3-8-02





Tracklist:

1. Spare this life
2. The storm
3. Mansion in sorrow
4. Miriam
5. Little one
6. Slippery stairs
7. The crypt
8. Broken glass
9. More than pain
10. The wheelchair
11. Spirits
12. Mommy
13. Sorry dear


King Diamond, somewhat like Rolf Kasparek, has never really put out a bad CD, nor has he really varied his metal style much at all, but at times he has been so prolific that the same features I mentioned before combined to take the energy and excitement out of the music for the listener. (Sometimes I think it's not the band's fault at all, there's just only so many melodies, riffs, etc., you can digest or react to in a very similar style, especially within a fairly short period of time.) But to some degree or another I've enjoyed all that he's done, though with the piles of CDs since 'Fatal portrait' and 'Abigail', there's never been anything quite that good....However, I thought 'House of God' was one of his most compelling CDs in years, mainly because he started focusing a little more on songs, rather than just telling a story through his character. The opposite of that was CDs like 'The graveyard' which, while full of great metal music and playing, seemed more of a backdrop to telling the story.

'Abigail ll', while a fun and satisfying follow-up to their debut, seems unfortunately a little bit more heavily weighted in the story-opera side of things, rather than the great-songs side of things. This story I find a bit more confusing because you have Abigail, somehow the baby that was being reborn at 'Abigail l, now a grown woman (apparently she was saved because she was O'Brien's half-sister, and claimed by him to be neither evil nor good), and she suddenly appears and moves back in with who I THINK is Jonathan, kind of confusing since he's usually referred to as Count De La Fey, who I came to think of as the wife-pusher and ghost....Whew! And there's some other little girl part of Abigail...Well, the CD is pretty much telling this story, over well played guitars (I don't think there's any doubt as to the talent of the players on King's recent CDs) and other neo-classical music that have become very familiar to any fans or followers of the King. And, frankly, his stories and the music beneath them usually are compelling, even if they're not the songs that get stuck in my head because of their powerful vocal melodies.

So we have a well played and entertaining CD, fun alone just for its association with Abigail, and a fine effort, just not the most compelling to me of King's work, so others may find this something they'll pass up for a more perfect CD in an age of plenty.



CRAIG




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