For their first album in nearly 15 years, Fields of the Nephilim, or basically mastermind Carl McCoy and his group of "ghost musicians" as he likes to call them, return with another album of dark wave, electronica, space rock, and heavy metal. In some aspects this is pretty much a solo album for McCoy released under the monikor of Fields of the Nephilim, but honestly that doesn't matter much, as the music is still in the same style as classic FotN, perhaps not as heavy, but filled with that same dark, spacey, and doomy vibe that the band is known for.
Each track on the CD is pretty lengthy, running between 5 and 10 minutes in length. The opener "Shroud (Exordium)" is a dark keyboard drenched journey into ominous space rock, which then gives way to the bubbling electronic metal of "Straight to the Light", where you first hear McCoy's doomy, anguished vocals. "New Gold Dawn" is a nice mix of dark wave and progressive rock, featuring some fancy programmed drums, Mellotron, and catchy melodies. On the opposite end of the spectrum is "Requiem XIII-33 (Le Veilleur Silencieux)", a dark and depressing moody number that is like a head on collision between Pink Floyd and Type O Negative. Heavy guitars and speedy drum patterns come back into the mix on the snarling "Xiberia (Seasons in the Ice Cage)", while doomy yet progressive soundscapes permeate "She", a track that features McCoy's anguished vocals, heavy guitar dirges, and sweeping keyboards. The closing epic title track is a haunting prog rock tour-de-force that was actually my favorite on the album, rich with orchestrations, multi-tracked vocals, and eerie electronic soundscapes.
Long time fans of the band will no doubt be pleased with this first release in many years. For newcomers, Fields of the Nephilim aren't for everyone, but if you like dark, haunting music that crosses many genres, this just might be for you.
1. Shroud (Exordium) (5:45)
2. Straight to the Light (6:24)
3. New Gold Dawn (7:58)
4. Requiem XIII-33 (Le Veilleur Silencieux) (7:21)
5. Xiberia (Seasons in the Ice Cage) (7:33)
6. She (9:26)
7. Mourning Sun (10:33)