Bring Me The Horizon – POST HUMAN: NeX GEn

A thoroughly modern emo record, Bring Me snarl, gnash and rage through 16 tracks.

Label: Sony / RCA
Released: 24th May 2024

If their headline slot at Reading & Leeds 2022 was an overdue victory lap for a band who have constantly defied the odds, Bring Me The Horizon’s top-of-the-bill appearance at last year’s Download was proof the biggest metal band in Britain have absolutely no desire to slow down. Underlining that fact, the band confirmed the long-awaited follow-up to 2020’s game-changing ‘POST HUMAN: Survival Horror’ would be released later that year.

Under the shadow of several delays, the departure of Jordan Fish and a growing sense of uncertainty around the band, Bring Me The Horizon have finally surprise-released ‘POST HUMAN: NeX GEn’. There may have been moments over the past 12 months where it’s looked like the only way for Bring Me to go is down, but this ambitious, playful and ferocious collection of songs says differently.

Since 2006’s ‘Count Your Blessings’, every Bring Me album has deliberately been bigger than the last, fuelled by self-belief, technical ability, and a desire to constantly push the genre forward. Rather than try and build on the stadium cyber-punk of ‘Survival Horror’ though, ‘NeX GEn’ turns inwards and creates something far more intense. A thoroughly modern emo record, Bring Me snarl, gnash and rage through 16 tracks that cover everything from hammering nu-metal and easycore pop-punk to hyperpop and jungle.

Rather than a playlist of influences designed to shock, the whole record flows on the right side of chaos. One moment, Bring Me are leaders of a giddy underground rave; the next, we’re sat in a Narcotics Anonymous meeting. It’s urgent, but never oppressive.

Singles like ‘DiE4u’, ‘LosT’, ‘sTraNgeRs’ and ‘AmEN!’ haven’t lost any of their bite since they were first shared, offering moments of communal euphoria across a record that knows how heavy it can feel. The brooding pop metal of ‘liMOuslne’ brings AURORA into Bring Me’s ever-expanding world; a trio of ‘[ost]’ tracks are glitching steps into the world of hectic dance while ‘N/A’ builds on Oasis’ ‘Married With Children’. 

There’s still not another vocalist in heavy music who’s as up for eviscerating themselves as Oli Sykes. Across ‘NeX GEn’, he leans into optimistic melodrama with newfound aggression, but there are plenty of moments where that same vulnerability teeters over into tenderness. “I’m sorry, kid, but I can’t be your saviour,” he sings on ‘n/A’ alongside arenas full of fans screaming, “Hello, Oli, you fucking knobhead”. Elsewhere, he grapples with addiction, depression and uncertainty with a disarming openness. It’s never entirely bleak, but it’s not exactly hopeful either. 

The whole twisting journey ends with the twinkling hammer of ‘DIg It’. A song about failure, disconnect, pain and belief, it offers little in the way of answers, but Bring Me’s defiant perseverance is once again put front and centre as a beacon for others. Then, in the dying moments, a new character is introduced into the ‘POST HUMAN’ narrative as a promise that Bring Me The Horizon’s story is far from done.

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