Fields of the Nephilim was formed in Stevenage, Hertfordshire, England in 1983. The band consisted of Carl McCoy (singer/songwriter), Tony Pettitt (bass), Peter Yates (keyboards), and the two Wright brothers (not those Wright brothers) Nod Wright (drums) and Paul Wright (guitar). They produced what their fans called "true" gothic rock as opposed to the more mainstream music of bands like Sisters of Mercy, which Fields are often compared to. Their music always had an underlying theme of loss and sorrow, the lyrics often making reference to the arcane and the occultism with which McCoy was so fascinated. Their style spanned from dark music filled with bitter regret to songs of almost dreamlike sadness, all on the same album.
For some time they maintained a strange Sergio Leone-style western hero image, that of cowboy hats and long trenchcoats, and developed the odd habit of smothering their coats in flour or talcum powder for their video shoots. They also earned a reputation for making incredibly bad videos at that stage. Overlooking live albums and videos, and various smaller EP releases, their major releases are:
2000's One More Nightmare was more a chance for the record company to cash in on previous success, featuring mostly remixes of older favourites. Similarly, Fallen was a somewhat hasty collection of unreleased tracks and a couple of remixes romoured by some to be released against the band's wishes, but despite its lack of production quality it is still worth adding to the collection.
Whilst signed to the Situation Two record label, Fields of the Nephilim had two major UK hit singles with Preacher Man and Blue Water, while their first album, Dawnrazor, made an appearance in the UK album chart. Their second album, The Nephilim, did somewhat better, reaching number 14, and they had a minor hit with the album's fourth track Moonchild. The 2005 album Mourning Sun also featured a cover of Zager and Evans' 1969 dystopian-future-themed hit In The Year 2525.
In October 1991, McCoy left the group, keeping the name Fields of the Nephilim after having payed out to the rest of the band for the rights. The rest of the band got a new vocalist, Alan Delaney, and began touring under the name Rubicon in the summer of 1992, while McCoy meantime went on to form Nefilim. Rubicon released two albums on Beggars Banquet Records (What Starts, Ends in 1993, and Room 101 in 1995). They disbanded afterward but reformed in the late 90s.