US Death/Thrashers Inhuman Condition were formed in 2020 by Jeramie Kling, vocals and drums (Venom Inc, Ex Deo, The Absence) and Taylor Nordberg, guitars (Deicide, The Absence). They joined up with Terry Butler, bass (Obituary, Death, Massacre, Six Feet Under) and wasted no time getting their first full-length, Rat°God, out the following year. Half of the material was originally destined for a new Massacre album, so it was good to see that not go to waste. Massacre’s loss was definitely Inhuman Condition’s gain.
Inhuman Condition – Fearsick (Listenable Insanity Records)
Release Date: 15 July 2022
Words: Jools Green
Just over a year later, they are back with the follow-up, Fearsick, and if you enjoyed the predecessor, then you will certainly be more than happy with this latest offering.
For anyone unfamiliar with their sound, they don’t attempt to boundary push but focus on creating Thrash-infused Death Metal that is, in all respects, as technically perfect as possible. The instrumentation is precisely delivered, and the production is crisp, well balanced and defined, with a fresh modern feel but maintaining an old-school vibe.
There is a slight similarity in the riffs to Massacre but where Inhuman Condition really stands out in comparison is in the vocal department. Jeramie unleashes a superbly defined, gravelly growl that is well intonated and with lyrics delivered with clarity of content. Also, his drum work is excellent, bolstering and embellishing the guitar work to great effect.
Fearsick is a nine-track, thirty-six-minute offering, although I believe some versions also have a bonus track, a cover of Metallica’s Whiplash.
There is a pace that is very well varied in its ebb and build, something which always sounds far more engaging than a linear delivery. Beneath the raw brutality and the wonderfully dark undercurrent, there is a decidedly groove-rich aspect making it all the more engaging and the abundance of squealing, thrashy leadwork on pretty much every track is a further bonus.
You’ll also be hard-pressed to pick favourites amongst these tracks. Opener, The Mold Testament, is a filthy chugger with pace and direction switching that will keep you constantly surprised. It sets things in motion superbly, and follow-up track Recycled Hate drives through like an unrelenting juggernaut and is a superb chunk of well-varied, catchy as hell Death Metal.
If the last track wasn’t fast enough for you, then Caustic Vomit Reveries should do the trick. It certainly hits the ground faster than the predecessors whilst still maintaining that engaging ebb and build as it progresses.
I’m Now The Monster returns the filthy chug of the opening track, but it also boasts seamless direction and pace switching, a hugely engaging track that also has an abundance of leadwork bursts.
King Con builds superbly, initially quiet and reflective, moving into something a little more precise and militaristic before breaking into a part d-beat extravaganza, repeatedly switching between that and something more sinister and back again. In contrast, Hellucid has a lovely sleazy, filthy groove and a wild, unpredictable pace and direction, which, on first listen through, was my favourite track, but further listens have shown this album to be too consistent end to end to pick favourites.
Wound Collector is dark, sinister, dramatic and irresistibly engaging, and Fencewalker starts off as a punchy chugger, breaking into what seems like an unstoppable pace before plunging into dark doomy dramatic depths, returning for one final full-on sensory assault. A track that is as powerful as it is irresistible.
Then we come to the final piece, Where Pain Is Infinity, which has a sinister air to open, developing an unnerving build before turning into a d-beat rich chugging beast, as always, keeping you engaged and amazed with the slick quality of the pace and direction switching.
Fearsick is being released, like its predecessor, on Listenable Insanity Records, which is Taylor and Jeramie’s own label and is available to pre-order in a range of CD, vinyl and cassette formats along with digital at inhumancondition.bandcamp.com/
But get in quick because they are selling out in the pre-sales very fast.