Review of Fields of the Nephilim's Fallen

"Are You Ready to be Reborn?" is the question on their official website, and it's a question only a band that have reanimated themselves into something new, something beyond alive that have made me a fan for life for these gods of "Dust and Death."

Fallen is by far the loudest, fastest and most complex of any of The Nephilim's albums. Each song is journey back to life and love after being dead for so long. Track 1 "Dead to the World" is a weary confession from the Highwayman himself, Carl McCoy: "I need no one. I need nothing. I can wait. I've been dead for so long. Help me." When you compare the lyrics to Patti Smith's "Dead to the World", perhaps this was the voice of the man or the ghost she was writing about.

The album only gets better as the love story unfolds. "From the Fire", "Thirst" and "Darkcell AD" tell of a love so powerful it can raise the dead. Musically, the atmospheres created by Carl McCoy and Tony Pettitt in songs like "Darkcell AD", "Fallen" and "Premonition" are so well layered, it's like you're running through a forest of love-suicides wailing among the harpies.

And there's a new energy in this album that I've never heard or felt before. The only thing I can compare it to is if you loved the energy Al Jourgensen created with Skinny Puppy on their Rabies album, you will love "Subsanity", and "One More Nightmare (Trees Come Down)" on this one. These songs are fast, fierce and gloriously violent.

If you don't know, the Nephilim were fallen angels expelled from Heaven for divulging forbidden knowledge to humans; often, those humans were women who the angels loved and had children with. Ever since their inception in 1984, there has always been something sacred with Fields of the Nephilim. Fallen is more imparted knowledge to humans from Watchers who've seen the other side. I have a feeling that when their website is up and we can read the lyrics to each song, there'll be so much wisdom, so much knowledge and so much love for humans from two angels who've seen so much. Too much.

Listen to Fallen and you won't be "dead but dreaming" anymore. You will be a God among the animals, alive among the spirits.

Album of the Year, hands down . . .

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© 2003 Richard Van Camp
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