A cold wet Saturday finds me standing outside the O2 Academy in Glasgow for the highly anticipated Fields of the Nephilim / Mission gig. I
heard about this gig last year in Birmingham when Wayne Hussey announced it on stage, could it be true my two favourite Goth bands on the same bill in Glasgow? Neither band had played in Scotland for a long time and now I was going to get them together all in one night, to say that I was happy would be a slight understatement. This was actually the second time today I had been outside the venue as earlier I had had the pleasure of interviewing The Mission which can be heard here.
First band on tonight is the Fields of the Nephilim but there appears to be a problem, we are allowed into the photo pit but then nothing happens! After about 10 mins the lights dim and the intro to Dead but Dreaming starts playing and the band members walk on stage to play the end of the song and it becomes clear what the problem was, there is no smoke! The Nephilim without smoke is unheard of, shadowy dust jacketed figures wreathed in smoke is what the band is about, but tonight I could see then clear as day. Well see is maybe stretching the point a bit far actually due to the lack of smoke the light levels had been dropped down really low so the band still retained a dark and mysterious look.
Chord of Souls is next and the Nephilim are sounding tight being driven along by Tony Pettitt’s bass (who has returned to the fold) and Carl McCoys shouts of “Eyes Eyes Eyes Eyes” ringing out as the band power through one of their faster songs. For Her Light an At the Gates of Silent Memory follow from 1990’s Elizium ‘Gates’ with it’s brooding menace is especially good tonight before it picks up for it’s faster ending. A trio of songs from the classic ‘Nephilim’ album follow ‘Love Under Will, ‘The Watchman’ and ‘Moonchild’ It’s just as Carl is singing the title of ‘Moonchild’ at the start of the song that the magic really starts in tonight’s show, the smoke machine starts working!
Huge plumes of white smoke burst out from the side of the stage and soon the band is wreathed in their customary shroud, the light levels increase dramatically and it’s business as usual as all the elements are finally in place for a Nephilim show. This fact is clearly not lost on the band as they perform an excellent version of ‘Psychonaut’ with Carl urging the crowd on with little hand waves and the crowd duly responded to Carl’s gestures. The band leave the stage to roars of approval and return presently for their encore of ‘Last Exit for the Lost’ and ‘Mourning Sun’ both long tracks that showcase the very best of what the Nephilim can do live, from dark brooding passages to fast paced action it’s all there and tonight they are laying it on hard an fast to the happy Glasgow crowd. Final track ‘Mourning Sun’ I have never heard better from the band and didn’t want it to end but end it must and the band left to raptures applause an shouts for more.
- (Dead but Dreaming)
- Chord of Souls
- For Her Light
- At the Gates of Silent Memory
- Love Under Will
- The Watchman
- Last Exit for the Lost
- Mourning Sun
- Carl McCoy (lead vocals)
- Tony Pettitt (bass)
- Gavin King (dreadlocks – guitar)
- Tom Edwards (bandana – guitar)
- Lee Newell (drums)
After a great show by the Fields of the Nephilim I was very interested to see how the Mission performed in comparison to them, and it was
right back to darkness! The Mission started with ‘Black Cat Bone’ from their new album ‘The Brightest Light’ with even less light on stage than the Nephilim had, with Wayne Hussey singing in almost complete darkness. Thankfully this was just for the first song and normal operations started on song number 2 ‘Beyond the Pale’ with Wayne belting out an excellent version of the song.
The Mission are also in fine form tonight with ‘Serpent’s Kiss’ and ‘Severina’ quickly following before playing ‘Brightest Light’ from the new album. In fact the new album gets a good share of tonight’s performance with ‘The Girl in a Fur Skin Rug’, ‘Everything but the Squeal’, ‘Swan Song’ and ‘Drag’ all getting played as well. The new songs fit in very well with the older classic material and I particularly liked tonight’s version of ‘The Girl in a Fur Skin Rug’, Other highlights of the set was an excellent version of ‘Wake’ and ‘The Crystal Ocean’ both going down very well with the audience.
I was quite surprised when the band finished their main set with new song ‘Swan Song’ I guess I was just expecting them to play one of their classics but I must admit it works well and is clearly set to be a future classic from the band. Returning to the stage for their encore Craig Adams gives his bass some major agro for the opening of ‘Drag’ with Wayne belting out the lyrics in excellent style. ‘Blood Brother’ follows and then it’s time for one of the best intros in my mind ever ‘Deliverance’ tonight’s was as epic as ever but due to the delay at the start I had to leave towards the end of the song to get the last train home.
Leaving the venue with Wayne singing ‘Brother’s Sister’s’ in my ears and a big smile across my face I was reflection on how goods tonight’s show had been and if it hadn’t been for a faulty smoke machine we wouldn’t of had a very unique show by the Nephilim. I understand that the Mission went on and played ‘Tower of Strength’ after I had left the venue which surprised me as they were already over the venues curfew time, naughty boys but very typical of the band.
All in all a great nights music from two very different “Goth” bands with both bands playing great sets and I look forward to seeing both bands again in the future.
- Black Cat Bone
- Beyond The Pale
- Serpent’s Kiss
- Sometimes the Brightest Light Comes from the Darkest Place
- The Girl in a Fur Skin Rug
- Naked and Savage
- Wake (RSV)
- Butterfly On A Wheel
- Everything but the Squeal
- The Crystal Ocean
- Swan Song
- Blood Brother
- Tower of Strength
- Wayne Hussey (vocals, guitar)
- Simon Hinkler (lead guitar)
- Craig Adams (bass, backing vocals)
- Mike Kelly (drums)