It’s hard to listen to this record from Body Count and not feel like this isn’t an important record. Ice T and the Body Count crew have gone to great lengths with this record to “…break this shit all the way down to the low fucking dirty-ass truth.”
In comparison to Manslaughter, their previous effort, this record feels WAY more consistent. I was blown away by how awesome that record was at the time, but as awesome as tracks like Talk Shit, Get Shot and the cover of 99 Problems were on that record, looking back with hindsight, there’s weaknesses in the quality of the songwriting there. I LOVED Manslaughter, but I think I prefer this record. And I think it has EVERYTHING to do with a few things – obviously, the solid touring they’ve done before returning to the studio for this one has improved them and amazing production on this, but I think the MAJOR factor on this is the timing and political environment in the US.
This record and the voices contained on it, the savage, REAL words from Ice T feel WAY more important on this record in a President Trump world.
I won’t lie and say that I have been a long-term Body Count fan – I will admit that I am Johnny-Come-Lately to their music, only jumping on board from Manslaughter. But I have been a fan of music since the early 90s of music that speaks of anger and comes from a place of rage about inequality and injustice. In the words of Ice T himself, “Music happens in climates, groups like Rage Against The Machine and Korn were born when
the world was in turmoil, then music went into this delusional period where hip-hop became about nothing more than poppin’ bottles. Now we have impending doom again, racism is at an all-time high and it’s our season again. The ‘60s was real music, and BODY COUNT was born into that – I’m going to tell you how I feel about shit, that’s who I am and who I will always be. Now, in 2017, let’s see if people are really as pissed off as they act like they are. We’re dealing with a generation that has never known rage. They grew up on Obama, they’re soft today.”
The production on the record is slick as hell, and if you look at it from an entirely musical perspective, the sounds and tones in the guitars and the attack of the drums, fast-paced and angry, a blend of metal and punk styles, are not a massive leap or change from what they have always done. But damn they do it REAL WELL here and I don’t think I would want them to change – it’s the vehicle that allows Ice T to spit what you want to hear from Body Count – the truth, delivered hard, fast and savage.
This is the first record the band has put out via Century Media and it seems like the move has been of great benefit to the band – allowing them their platform and not holding back their message or censoring them in any way. And that’s exactly what the world needs right now.
KEY TRACKS: No Lives Matter, Black Hoodie, Raining in Blood/Postmortem, Walk With Me (feat. Randy Blythe of Lamb of God)