Through the years, we have been patiently awaiting any novelty regarding British gothic rockers Fields Of The Nephilim, ever since the exhilarating rumours of fresh material emerging on social media last year. We all know what a perfectionist frontman Carl McCoy is when it comes to his music, and that is only right and proper, because having followed these musicians for over thirty years, and we all know that Fields Of Nephilim are much more than just music, they execute a representation of elegant overtones carefully painted in sonorous scales.
The mainstream music press has spent decades trying to figure out Fields Of The Nephilim, focusing mainly on their imaginary and more crystal clear eccentricities, all the while totally missing the point; the magic is the music, and the music is the magic. And the band performs to audiences in gatherings that are not just gigs, but poetic rituals.
The magically-minded, welcome Carl McCoy’s latest output, the single ‘Prophecy’, not just as four minutes and twenty-one seconds of music, but as an embodied ritual. The name alone speaks of revelations yet to be accomplished, while the song central motifs of fire and vision – both outer and inner – cannot fail to ignite the imagination.
‘Prophecy’ kicks off with sinuous, insistent guitar before an insane discharge of energy. It boots brilliantly into life with Carl McCoy’s personal signature which waves vocally from roar, yowl, and channeled incantations, to me pure reminiscent of the classic song ‘Chord Of Souls’. ‘The Raggedy Man’ is clearly still in cracking voice as he gutters and growls his way through to a melodic and emotive chorus, underpinned by some wonderfully chugging bass – it is indeed, gloomy and inspirational.
“Let the fire burn” is the song’s central refrain: let the fire burn, intones Carl McCoy (or whichever entity he may be embodying at this particular time), and lets both spirit and soul rise. It is active material for these troubled times, even leaving aside all the profound ramifications.
To the most casual listener, this is a well-crafted, punchy but a meticulously-produced song, combining melody and power. To the Fields Of The Nephilim fandom, it is both as visceral as darkening feral, seething head-on charge that nods to nearly every album of their career. You will hear ‘Mourning Sun’ in there, as well as to hear ‘Zoon’, ‘Dawnrazor’, and I reckon it is going to be absolutely incredible live. Not to mention that with every listen you will discover new tones, refrains and references that will have you digging eagerly into your Fields Of The Nephilim back catalogue.
But what of the visuals accompanying the song, and of course, it’s envisioned. The metal-handed renter of the ‘Preacher Man’ video, who defies death at the hands of chainsaw-wielding zombies to reanimate in ‘Blue Water’? Fields Of The Nephilim has, undeniably, always revolved around the creative vision of Carl McCoy and so with any new single, we are going to wish to see the man himself. Unfortunately, you have to wait for the last twenty-one seconds of the song or so before he puts in a brief appearance: I will not give away any further details, but fans will be delighted to see the glove in action.
Fields Of The Nephilim management are adamant that ‘Prophecy’ – true to its name – heralds a tranche of new Fields Of The Nephilim material which will be released according to a predetermined schedule. If this song is anything to go by, Carl McCoy’s long hours in the studio have paid off in spades and it looks like we are going to see some of the band’s most impressive output for a very long time.
‘Prophecy’ physical release on both CD and vinyl with promising artwork and bonus material following are in due course, we are told.