Bonehunter – Dark Blood Reincarnation System Review

Bonehunter and I have a deep, penetrable relationship that’s difficult to describe. They put out albums, and I review them. OK, so that wasn’t complicated. But, the last time I checked, I’ve reviewed more of their albums than I have any other band since starting at AMG.1 This year’s Dark Blood Reincarnation System makes four albums and four Grier reviews for these crusty Finns.2 If you don’t know Bonehunter, it’s time you were educated. Bonehunter is best known for two things: bear erections and punky, black-thrash. But, something is amiss with the new artwork. Zoom in, and you’ll see what I mean. While our lovable well-hung bear is back,3 he looks like he’s got erectile dysfunction. But, how can that be? He’s young, he’s spry, he’s full of spunk. Hold up… I just noticed all the ass. OK, he’s just tired and taking a break. That makes more sense. The next time he mounts, it’ll be the big #4. And he’ll be coming harder than ever.

While we wait for Teddy to nut, let’s talk about his achievements up to this point. In the last six years, his stamina has steadily increased. Kinda like a staircase. If you go back and look at the three previous Bonehunter records, each increased half a point in score. Their crusty filthiness hasn’t really altered over the years, but the band’s approach has. Though each album is longer in length than the previous one, there’s girth to match. With that thickness cums strength and lasting power. Teddy can go harder than ever before, and his head is clear and focused. No longer does he have that blind adolescent desire. He’s mature now. Considering Dark Blood Reincarnation System is forty minutes, he’s gonna need it. Still, he’ll outlast most of you by thirty-nine minutes.

After opening with another effects-ridden, sound-bitten introduction, mfing Bonehunter comes at you with a frenzy of claws, teeth, and cock. “Black Magic M16” is easily the most exciting opening the band has ever written. The song combines blackened speed with a face-punching chorus. There’s also a touch of melody throughout the song that you’ll find a common theme throughout the album. The other common denominator is the band’s back-half builds of rising emotion and fitting guitar solos. Though it’s something you’d hear from a band like Toxic Holocaust, it has that pulsing, Bonehunter attitude. Another track like “Black Magic M16” is “Gashadokuro.” Well, at least in the way of the killer solo. The difference between the two songs being that “Gashadokuro” isn’t shy of pile-driving you with a chugtastic lick. Not only is it one of the few tracks that take that direction, but it also toys with heavy reverberation and psychedelic solos. It’s longer than the others on the album, but it’s well balanced.4

Another unique yet subtle sound you’ll hear on the album is that thrashy Immortal one. You can hear it in songs like “Parasite Eve,” “Nightmare Angel 2099,” and the closing title track. It’s not a spot-on comparison, which is good. Instead, it borrows Abbath’s voice and signature guitar speed and fucks it up with speed. The first two pieces are simple ditties that charge hard into clever solo work. The title track is far more complex. Though it has those influences, it’s a hilly trek. It dips and rises, going from mid-paced chugs to melodic, old-school Norwegian black metal. Like “Gashadokuro,” “Dark Blood Reincarnation System” is one of the more unique on the album.

Bonehunter‘s newest output might be the most fun I’ve had all year. Sure, “Altered Beast” and “Virgin Devil Princess” are typical Toxic Holocaust-core in comparison to the other tracks. And, maybe trimming songs like “Gashadokuro” and “Dark Blood Reincarnation System” would have helped. But that doesn’t take away from my enjoyment of the album. The production is a little less raw, making it easier to hear the leads and solos. Dark Blood Reincarnation System is Bonehunter‘s best record yet, and it shows a band getting comfortable in their skin.

Editor’s Note: We apologize for the number of low-brow dick jokes you had to wade through. We try to run a quasi-safe-for-work blog and this one flopped way over the line.

Rating: 3.5/5.0
DR: 6 | Format Reviewed: 320 kb/s mp3
Label: Hells headbangers Records
Websites: |
Releases Worldwide: August 20th, 2021

Show 4 footnotes

  1. I know, King Diamond is really the champion here, but let’s just keep that to ourselves.
  2. That title could have gone to Haunt, but I got tired of them releasing the same album over and over.
  3. I call him Tent-Pole Teddy.
  4. As all bear cock should be. – Steel
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