King of the Dead (album)

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King of the Dead
Cover art by Michael Whelan
Studio album by Cirith Ungol
Released 1984
Genre Heavy metal, doom metal
Length 50:17
Label Enigma
Producer Cirith Ungol
Cirith Ungol chronology
Frost and Fire
King of the Dead
One Foot in Hell
Professional ratings
Review scores
Source Rating favorable [1]
Allmusic 2/5 stars[2]
Decibel favorable [3]
Metal Crypt 4/5 stars[4]
Metal Reviews 92/100[5]
Metal Zone favorable [6]
Rock Hard 7.5/10 stars [7]
Rough Edge 3/4 stars [8]

King of the Dead is the second album by the American heavy metal band Cirith Ungol. It was self-produced by the band and released in July 1984 on Enigma Records. It was re-released in September 1999 on Metal Blade Records.

Band member Robert Garven declared in an interview:

"King of the Dead was our best album, the reason was that we had total control over it. Every album could have been this good if we could have exercised complete control over its production and other things. This is the album which I feel is our best effort. The reason the long wait between albums is because when you are financing them yourselves, you have to come up with the money to pay for things like studio time. Plus being on all these independent labels their time tables are slower. I also did all the layout and design of the first three covers, all this while we were all working full time trying to sponsor the dream."

Guitarist Greg Lindstrom, who left the band in 1982, two years before the release of this album, said:

"'Atom Smasher,' 'Cirith Ungol' and 'Death of the Sun' were all songs we had written together in the mid 70's, and 'Finger of Scorn' was one of my songs that the band used with my blessing."

Another Michael Moorcock-inspired drawing acts as the album's cover: it is entitled "King of the Dead" and was painted by Michael Whelan.

Track listing[edit]

All songs written by Cirith Ungol, except where noted.

  1. "Atom Smasher" - 4:12
  2. "Black Machine" - 4:16
  3. "Master of the Pit" - 7:09
  4. "King of the Dead" - 6:49
  5. "Death of the Sun" - 3:54
  6. "Finger of Scorn" (Greg Lindstrom) - 8:34
  7. "Toccata in Dm" (Johann Sebastian Bach) - 4:37
  8. "Cirith Ungol" - 6:24
  9. "Last Laugh" - 4:22 (Live bonus track only on remastered version)


  • Tim Baker - vocals
  • Jerry Fogle - guitars
  • Michael Vujea - bass
  • Robert Garven - drums, percussion


  1. ^ Marsicano, Dan. "Cirith Ungol - King Of The Dead Review". Retrieved 2013-09-27. 
  2. ^ Huey, Steve. "Cirith Ungol King of the Dead review". Allmusic. Rovi Corporation. Retrieved 2012-05-22. 
  3. ^ Treppel, Jeff. "The Lazarus Pit: Cirith Ungol’s King of the Dead". Decibel. Red Flag Media. Retrieved 2013-09-27. 
  4. ^ Griffin, Larry. "Classic Review: Cirith Ungol - King Of The Dead". Metal Crypt. Michel Renaud/The Metal Crypt. Retrieved 2013-09-27. 
  5. ^ Dee. "CIRITH UNGOL - King of the Dead". Metal Reviews. Metal Reviews. Retrieved 2013-09-27. 
  6. ^ Mihailidou, Hellena. "CIRITH UNGOL - King Of The Dead". Metal Zone. Retrieved 2013-09-27. 
  7. ^ Kühnemund, Götz. "Review Album". Rock Hard. Hi-Media. Retrieved 2013-09-27. 
  8. ^ Bolton, R. Scott. ""King of the Dead" (Metal Blade; 1984)". Rough Edge. R. Scott Bolton. Retrieved 2013-09-27.