Fields Of The Nephilim: Ceromonies

Archival live CD/DVD offers “closure and regeneration”.

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Since rising from the presumed-deceased a few years ago, Carl McCoy’s Fields Of The Nephilim have paced their comeback with a Zen patience that suggests either McCoy’s very, very cool about the whole affair or it’s just a bit of fun to him now.

Even this high-quality live CD-DVD package documents Shepherds Bush Empire shows from as long ago as 2008, and McCoy says it’s about “both closure and regeneration… from this point we move forward.”

But be reassured, wearers of cowboy hats drenched in flour who get irritated at the use of the word “Goth” – the chaps are visibly taking it very seriously here, and sound as epically distressed and faintly scary as ever. McCoy’s voice remains an extraordinary sound, and now evokes an angry grizzly gargling grits while being mangled in a cement mixer.

The DVD shows us an outfit utterly determined to do their thing and their thing alone: the Nephs’ earnestness may be easy to mock, but they deserve some admiration for their apathy towards any world outside theirs. Musically, they’ve got harder, more industrial, more NIN-like: Penetration is a battering-ram, Moonchild is still the Sisters without mercy.

For the faithful, this will be monumental.

Chris Roberts

Chris Roberts has written about music, films, and art for innumerable outlets. His new book The Velvet Underground is out April 4. He has also published books on Lou Reed, Elton John, the Gothic arts, Talk Talk, Kate Moss, Scarlett Johansson, Abba, Tom Jones and others. Among his interviewees over the years have been David Bowie, Iggy Pop, Patti Smith, Debbie Harry, Bryan Ferry, Al Green, Tom Waits & Lou Reed. Born in North Wales, he lives in London.