Fields Of The Nephilim live review

Shepherd’s Bush Empire, London

Crowd shot
(Image: © Katja Ogrin)

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Shepherd’s Bush Empire, London Sister Underworld, London The Empire is crammed with excited goths here for the winter half of The Nephs’ solstice celebrations. The dark rockers haven’t released a studio album for over a decade, but fans still flock to their spectacular live sermons. There’s a buzz in the air as dry ice fills the stage and a doomy rendition of spaghetti western theme Man With Harmonica fades into the spinetingling Moonchild. Down in the pit, jewellery-heavy fists pump through the smoke and human pyramids are climbed. Some gothic rock pioneers have become a shadow of their former selves, but Fields Of The Nephilim are still standing tall despite lineup changes. Although the gig doesn’t showcase the promised “things as yet unseen”, it does include a solstice-themed set of favourites including the atmospheric Psychonaut and comeback single Prophecy. Some sound issues and technical problems threaten the performance, but the ever-professional Nephs plough on through the charged atmosphere, bidding an esoteric farewell with glorious epics Last Exit For The Lost and Mourning Sun.

Natasha Scharf
Deputy Editor, Prog

Contributing to Prog since the very first issue, writer and broadcaster Natasha Scharf was the magazine’s News Editor before she took up her current role of Deputy Editor, and has interviewed some of the best-known acts in the progressive music world from ELP, Yes and Marillion to Nightwish, Dream Theater and TesseracT. Starting young, she set up her first music fanzine in the late 80s and became a regular contributor to local newspapers and magazines over the next decade. The 00s would see her running the dark music magazine, Meltdown, as well as contributing to Metal Hammer, Classic Rock, Terrorizer and Artrocker. Author of music subculture books The Art Of Gothic and Worldwide Gothic, she’s since written album sleeve notes for Cherry Red, and also co-wrote Tarja Turunen’s memoirs, Singing In My Blood. Beyond the written word, Natasha has spent several decades as a club DJ, spinning tunes at aftershow parties for Metallica, Motörhead and Nine Inch Nails. She’s currently the only member of the Prog team to have appeared on the magazine’s cover.