Released: 2017, Hells Headbangers
Reviewer: Aaron Yurkiewicz
Looking at the cover of SEXUAL PANIC HUMAN MACHINE, I’m reminded of South Park’s infamous Man-Bear-Pig. Is that a Man Bear or a Were-Bear-Man? Why is he submerged in that tank? And why is he sporting such an enormous erection? None of these questions are answered on Bonehunter’s latest full length, but the Finish trio does manage to deliver a serviceable platter of blackened thrash, which I suppose is the more important thing.
The 9 tracks on SEXUAL PANIC HUMAN MAHCINE recall everything from early Bathory to classic speed metal to the middle finger in your face confrontation of G.I.S.M., all wrapped in a snot nosed punk rock snarl. Tunes like “Enter Satan’s Dimension” and the black n’ roll of “Digital Evil” are seriously catchy, somehow balancing the low fi fuzz of total kvlt black metal with hair metal guitar licks. “Spectre of Sex Vengeance” could totally pass for mid-generation Satyricon, and the title track sounds like Darkthrone covering TAKING OVER-era Overkill. The whole thing is a mixed bag of random metal noise that’s surprisingly satisfying, although you might find yourself questioning “WTF did I just listen to?” when it’s done.
The one major detraction from an otherwise enjoyable record is the band’s attempt to sound artificially raw. The fuzz is turned WAY up on all of the amps, there’s zero mid-range anywhere in the mix and halfway through the disc it all starts to wash together. It’s one thing to record an album/demo and it ends up sounding rough because it’s an output of what the band had at their disposal at the time, it’s totally another to intentionally try to create that vibe. In this case, it grates on your earholes a bit and unfortunately takes away from what’s really a quality set of tunes.
Only on Hells Headbangers would a band like Bonehunter find a home and an album with a man bear sporting wood not seem out of the ordinary. So to them I say “thank you.” If you dig your thrash ugly sounding but well crafted and you’re not concerned about taking your metal too seriously, SEXUAL PANIC HUMAN MACHINE might be just what you’re looking for.