by Kalle Malmstedt

Welcome so you came, you're here with us again.

Yes. Fields of the Nephilim are back. It has been 15 years of waiting. If you - like me - at one point, or another, thought that FotN is one of the premier guitar based bands of the gothic, hell, all of rock, movement you will have longed for this release, scanning the net, praying to your Gods ever since that awful year of 1991 when they disbanded.

But now, with Carl McCoy and (I think) Tony Pettit on that oh-so characteristic tap-tapping bass as sole remaining original members, they are here with us again. And by all Gods, it actually sounds a lot better than expected!

This is nothing like the neo-industrial/darkwave demos that were released by Jungle under the name "Fallen". No, this is classic FotN, without the plucking twin guitars of Paul Wright and Peter Yates, and it actually sounds like "Elizium" combined with "Zoon" and with a few pieces of "The Nephilim" thrown in for good measure. Seven tracks, all more than seven minutes long, almost all building up to a climax, full of samples and with the growling vocals of Carl McCoy on top. Love, loss, religion - it's all here.

I really shouldn't write more. I ought to put "Mourning Sun" on again instead. But as a die-hard fan who knows that some of the other fans will be as hard to convince as I was - even after the first listen - I must continue: You will like this, maybe not as much as the Pink Floyd-esque masterpiece "Elizium", but nonetheless. From dramatic intro "Shroud (Exordium)" all through harder, fiercer duo "Straight to the Light" and "New Gold Dawn" to the epic quartet of songs that ends in flowing, dark "She" and "Mourning Sun", this is as good as it gets 2005.

If you don't like it as much as you think, maybe that is because of your expectations. Perhaps you are measuring it against what it felt like to hear "For Her Light" for the first time, when you where 16. Well, I can tell you, this will not feel like that. But it will take you to the dark and smokey world of Carl McCoy again, a place where you know you have longed to be.

And if you are 16 now, well hey, this is where it begins. If you like this, you will surely, positively worship the back catalogue.