Mercyful Fate was formed in early 1981 in Copenhagen, Denmark, by vocalist King Diamond and guitar player Hank Shermann. Guitarist Michael Denner, Bassist Timi Hansen and drummer Kim Ruzz soon joined to complete the band line-up. The band recorded two demos in 1981, and later signed with Rave On Records in Holland, for recording of their successful EP Mercyful Fate, released on November 8th 1982.
The EP was soon in heavy rotation around the core metal radio stations, starting a new breed in Heavy Metal with their unique sound. Mercyful Fate signed a new deal with Roadrunner Records in 1983 to make their first full length album Melissa, recorded and released that same year. In 1984 the band went back into the studio to record their legendary album Don’t Break The Oath, released on September 7th 1984.