"It's been a long time in coming & the mourning sun has at last risen to shed some light on his recent album, his whereabouts, & the future of The Nephilim. Legendary song writer & visionary, Carl McCoy has been anything but idle. My special go out to Tara from SPV & Carl." -Marcos, NJ
Carl -"How you doing?"
Hey, it's a pleasure to be speaking to you!
Carl -"As you."
Well first off, how are you? Keeping busy?
Carl -"Yeah kind of. There's like plenty going on at the moment in my little world."
Since after the release of "Zoon" in the mid 90's which was then followed by a few "best of" compilations, had you been looking to record further or go more toards the producer route?
Carl -"Well yeah definatley. After "Zoon" I had some problems with the old cliche really. The whole record company problems & stuff like that where I was contracted & couldn't be released, & more contracts, & therefore couldn't sign with any certain labels, & they kind of held me up, so I was sort of banned from the music industry for about four years. But yeah the intention was to basically keep creating music but y'know under unlucky circumstances really."
Now with "Mourning Sun", is this going to be a stepping stone into further & more consistent albums?
Carl -"Yeah I believe so. I mean I believe that this is obviously from "Elizium" & "Zoon" to "Mourning Sun", I think there's continuity in there in some ways & I feel that "mourning Sun" has a freshness. It's all brand new material & kind of brings The Nephilim up to date. I suppose it's sort of a new beginning."
Obviously you've got quite a loyal cult following so I'm sure there's been nothing but praise since word got out on a new record.
Carl -"I've heard excellent praise on "Mourning Sun" from many, many people which is like ninety five percent positive so that's very good for a Nephilim record. I mean normally it takes quite a lot of time for people to absorb what we do & normally in retrospect appreciate what we do (laughter)."
Being that "Mourining Sun" wa soley conceived by you, did you feel that you had a tighter control over the creative aspects as opposed to recording with a permanent line up?
Carl -"Well that was quite a long time ago when I worked with a certain line up. Haven't done that sort in a real long time so I suppose yeah in a way there's lesser restrictions & your able to experiment a lot more. Your not stuck with any kind of format. I'm not one for formats because I introduce chaos a bit in the way I work so from that point of view, yeah there's a lot of creative ways you can follow which is something you wouldn't be able to consider when you've got a set format, so I'm quite pleased about that."
Was that ever an issue with your earlier work or did you pretty much have free reign to do as you pleased?
Carl -"It kind of started becoming an issue. I felt it started to become an issue when musicians were not playing their instruments on records. We started doing some experimantal songs back in the eighties like "Celebrate" & tracks like that which consisted of mainly a bass guitar & a vocal. I think that some of the guys in the band didn't like this approach & y'know that this didn't set in really with them but that kind of showed me quite really what a unique track this was & that there's plenty of other ways to go in music but the other musicians felt that, "well, what do we do with our hands now? (laughter)". So yeah, problems did set in because of that. I tried to get free reign as much as I could but it was pretty damn hard to achieve other than what we were already known for doing."
Your bio stated that the new album was recorded at various locations. Could you tell us some of the parts you visited & where are you currently residing these days?
Carl -"I'm still living just near London, well I'm based there but I've been all over the place in the last couple of years. We've got a mobile system so we can sort of transport & take anywhere. Like with "Zoon" I had that system, well now the old version. But we used to take that & set up our studio within another studio which wasn't really very practical for money reasons I suppose. It's like turing a loft studio into a resendential studio so I think this time there's a similar concept but not restricted on the environments so much. So we said, "Ok let's try this" & there's been alot of personal reasons for it more than anything else, & it's been a bit of fun as well. I mean your not always having fun with what your doing (laughter). You've got to enjoy it & I think I've actually enjoyed this, the "Mouring Sun" sessions more so than anything we've done before. It kind of works for me."
Do you still keep in touch with some of the original members? Any animosity there?
Carl -"I haven't touched base with any of them for quite some time. The last member I was to see was the bass player, Tony, & that was some years ago now. But some of the guys I haven't seen since 1990-'91, or whenever (laughter)."
Needless to say your one of the pioneers of alternative music & a major influence on the dark music scene. What do you think of the newer bands out there? Be it mainstream or underground are there any certain acts or singers that stick out in your head?
Carl -"Well the only problem I've got is that I've been working too close to me own music so I'm not really aware of what's out there & what's going on. One reason for that obviously is that I've been influenced by working from the outside. But it's been a busy time so I haven't had a chance. I'll know more of what's really goin' on out there when we actually start touring later in the year so I might have them answers then. I'm sure sure there's some good stuff out there. I mean the whole category of what we're supposed to fit into has been completely subdivided so y'know you've got metal, goth metal, this & that with the metal. I don't know what's what. Y'know to me music is music (laughter)."
There's quite a few so called "Nephilim" clones out there. Do you find they're just regurgitating what's already been done or are you flattered that your music has had such a lasting impact over the years?
Carl -"Well the influence with the lasting impact is pretty amazing. I mean I take that as a big compliment really. People respect what we've done though I couldn't pinpoint anyone necessarily. I wouldn't know unless someone plays me their music, then maybe I'd go "oh yeah" (laughter). That's as far as I can go really."
Did you find yourself being any particular frame of mind when recording the new record? For instance with a slow song to a faster track or does it just come naturally?
Carl -"No I have times that are good for creating. I couldn't tell you what they are. They're kind of, well, you just know when there's an urge to sort of do this stuff & I can't force it so I do like to make it a natural flow & to a point. And then there's a point that unnatural I suppose (laughter). No, there's no rules, regulations, or format in the way I work. It's a chaotic approach but when it comes, it comes."
Any comments or feelings on the current state of the world?
Carl -"Well it's just a few coincidences again when everytime I create an album there's always some sort of world event happening or something changing. Some alighnment or misalighnment (laughter). I dunno if it refelcts what I'm doing but I don't look too closely. I'm in my little world that I'm trying to work out (laughter)."
You've sort of answered one of my last questions before. So it's definate you'll be touring North America? C
arl -"I'd like to think so yeah. I've got no plans not to. The tour schedules bieng put together, so pretty soon. It might be later on in the year or whatever but I do presume we'll be doing some American dates. I hope so. It's been a long time since we've played there. A very long time."
You have a definate line up your bringing with you? Your bio states a shifting line up.
Carl -"I didn't have a permanet line up for recording. There's no real reason to do that. As far as playing live, y'know I've got a minsdest on a line up, & I've got some good people, & hopefully be a very strong Nephilim this time. We've got a pretty strong buzz going on over here about it so we'll see."
You find visuals important in a live show?
Carl -"They've never been that important to us. I mean we're pretty basic in our visuals. Basic back lighting. We used to use quite a bit of smoke on stage back in the day which was great y'know. Just be hiding away in there somewhere (laughter). But it was very quite simple yet visually it works with the music & I think the simple approach is quite good sometimes. But in the future who knows. I mean I'm very visually oriented anyway I supppose with graphics & stuff like that. Maybe we'll take the whole thing further but with the pyrotechnics, I don't think so yet ( laugher)."
So you've been tied up with promoting the new record & doing a plethora of interviews at the moment?
Carl -"Yeah there's been quite a few interviews. I mean I've only just started the U.S. ones like in the last week or so, so I've got alot do as far as I know. Now it's been busy with the European release & the gaps been quite big with the European to the U.S. release so I don't know why that is but that's a good thing nor a bad thing really. But hopefully noone's bored with it yet."
I don't think you have anything to worry about.
Carl -"Yeah, very positive reviews."
Anything you wanna add? Last but not least?
Carl -"No, just have to watch this base because we're getting ready to leave again & hopefully we'll come to the U.S."
It would certainly be an experience to see The Nephilim live. It's been a pleasure.
Carl -"Thank you. It was good to speak with you. Take care."
Fields of the Nephilim "Mourning Sun" SPV
"Mourning Sun" is a vicious storm that steadily kicks up a second wind attaining the might of a battering ram. Nephilim maestro Carl Mccoy has resurfaced after a four year hiatus & his vision hasn't been altered throughout the passing silence. Leaving behind the harsh metallic, industrial experiments on "Zoon", The Nephilim's spiritual vibe hasn't been compromised whatsoever by current musical trends nor has their identity remained so rooted since the guttural, sonic flames of the classic "Elzium" that so many have strived to duplicate. "Mourning Sun" is a well deserved return from the godfathers of dark, alternative rock & as is the case with all of their albums, this should be played from beginning to end, & quite loud too. Highly recommended if you like Garden of Delight, Gotterdammerung, Paradise Lost, etc." -Marcos, NJ
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