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FIELDS OF THE NEPHILIM
LIVE AT SHEPHERDS BUSH EMPIRE JULY 12 & 13, 2008
BY ALISON B
ALTERNATIVE MAGAZINE


The summer sun may just be setting outside but in Shepherds Bush Empire this evening it's already pitch black with bodies drawn from across Europe by the pied piper like call of a two-night stand from Fields of the Nephilim. A stage presence built on smoke 'n' leather shrouds illusion further ups the chill atmosphere even before the first eerie Ennio-Morricone-in-Transylvania riff gallops into earshot. When the band do relieve the tension, plumbing moody early albums for classics like "Moonchild," they revel in having a whole hall full of misery music fans grinning from ear to ear. These triumphs are not the whole story unfortunately though, the risk in spreading material over two nights for all but the most consistent, or prolific, of artists surely being that the classics become spread too thinly. McCoy's mid-period death metal influenced releases are not without their moments but, lengthy and involved, these all too often struggle to translate live, or engage a crowd already wilting under the band's unforgivably minimal attempts to interact with them. A single show may have packed more punch.