MERCYFUL FATE – Melissa/The Beginning

Mercyful Fate – Melissa/The Beginning (2003, Roadrunner Records)
Original Release (Melissa): 1983, Megaforce Records
Original Release (The Beginning): 1987, Roadrunner Records

Melissa
1. “Evil” … 4:45
2. “Curse of the Pharaohs” … 3:57
3. “Into the Coven” … 5:11
4. “At the Sound of the Demon Bell” … 5:23
5. “Black Funeral” … 2:50
6. “Satan’s Fall” … 11:23
7. “Melissa” … 6:40

The Beginning
1. “Doomed by the Living Dead” … 5:07
2. “A Corpse without Soul” … 6:52
3. “Nuns Have No Fun” … 4:17
4. “Devil Eyes” … 5:48
5. “Curse of the Pharaohs” … 3:50
6. “Evil” … 4:01
7. “Satan’s Fall” … 10:28
8. “Black Masses” … 4:30
9. “Black Funeral” … 2:52

It’s always great to come across these two-in-one releases. They’re usually price quite nicely and this one was no different as I picked it up from CD Universe for around $13. I know Melissa has a few other re-releases with bonus tracks, but you have to shop frugal and pairing the album with The Beginning (a compilation featuring their debut Nuns Have No Fun EP and a few other rare tracks) seemed like the best deal.

To most knowledgeable metal fans, Melissa, the debut album from Mercyful Fate, is already a known classic heavy metal release. Now I can say it myself that it is indeed a classic. I have held off on bands like Mercyful Fate, Slayer and Venom for so long. Yes, I know they are all groundbreaking bands that are revered in the world of metal, but such rampant talk about Satan and just evil in general has never interested me. Even though these bands have used the occult as a gimmick and to simply tell a story through song, it didn’t appeal to me for the longest time.

To this day, I still have no interest in Slayer or Venom but I’m slowly becoming a fan of Mercyful Fate and the reason I gave the band a chance again (I had sampled some of their stuff years ago) is because of the video game Guitar Hero: Metallica. In that game, Mercyful Fate re-recorded “Evil” and it’s a killer tune! Man, it’s nothing like what I had in mind from these guys. It’s a great early NWOBHM metal song but it also relies heavily on blues and classic rock. I love it, but I love the original version even more because King Diamond doesn’t sing so darn high like he does all throughout the 2008 version!

Melissa is definitely a heavy metal classic though, and I’m ashamed I hadn’t given it a chance sooner. As for The Beginning, it’s a great release as well, featuring all four songs from their first EP and the rest of the tracks are of television performances or rare demos. Another must-have for anyone who is just starting out on listening to Mercyful Fate, I think.

Highlights (Melissa): “Evil”, “Curse of the Pharaohs”, “Into the Coven”, “Satan’s Fall”, “Melissa”
Highlights: (The Beginning): “Doomed By the Living Dead”, “A Corpse Without a Soul”, “Nuns Have No Fun”, “Evil”, “Curse of the Pharaohs”, “Satan’s Fall”, “Black Masses”

www.covenworldwide.org
www.myspace.com/mercyfulfate

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Posted on June 7, 2009, in Mercyful Fate and tagged , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 5 Comments.

  1. Great to hear you are digging Fate! I remember when Melissa came out, it kncoked everyone on their ass! I got into Fate because of King Diamond’s makeup…..it looked like Gene Simmons’ style a bit but then I saw the image of the band and heard the album. My favorite fate record is the next one, Don’t Break The Oath, and I am also into King Diamond outside of Mercyful Fate.

    Steve
    Heavy Metal Addiction
    http://heavymetaladdiction.com

  2. I actually hate his makeup. 😀

    I’ve been meaning to pick up DON’T BREAK THE OATH since I’ve been enjoying this so much.

    • Can you do a review of albums from more extreme metal bands like Possessed, Kreator, Dark Angel, Sepultura, and Morbid Angel since you are not into Slayer or Venom?

    • Since you are not into extreme metal, can you at least review albums from Pantera, Danzig, Alice in Chains, and Type O Negative? Those are regular hard rock/metal bands. They are not extreme.

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