While it has been a genre that has divided metal fans over the years – the melding of metal and rap together seems like the perfect marriage. Metal is raw and is filled with passion, likewise is true rap. While many rappers these days choose to rap about bling and women the original rappers wrote about things that were close to their heart. That mixed with metal is a truly beautiful thing… and that was all something that many of us grew up listening to as groups such as the Ice-T led Body Count melded rap and metal together in a way that it had never been before.
Now Body Count are back with a new album – Bloodlust – and what time for them to land on their feet. Arriving in a time with America looks like it is in disarray and the nightly news again is reporting on police brutality Body Count arrives back at a time when the truth needs to be told, and as we saw with Cop Killer the truth is something that Body Count is not afraid to throw into the faces of the society.
Let’s just be brutality honest – you are not going to hear an album that is as thought-provoking or as important as Bloodlust is again this year. Two things hit you as you give this album a listen – Body Count’s sound has come into modern times in a big way, and their lyrics capture the current times in America like no other songwriter has managed to.
This is an album full of lyrics that are going to stick in my head for a long time. The line ‘when it comes to the poor no lives matter’ from No Lives Matter is a ringing description of what modern day society is like – not only in America but right around the world. The fact that the track is only enhanced by the guitar work of Ernie C and Juan Garcia just pounds the point home even harder.
And the thought-provoking lyrics just keep coming. Opening track Civil War may seem like it is talking about a future civil war in America but as Ice-T sings about ‘guns on the street’ and ‘pro-racial hate’ it does make you realise that this is a track very much for the modern day. Then there is the very poignant Black Hoodie about Police shooting dead innocent black people – as Ice-T says in the lyrics he’s been talking about this for twenty years, and yet it keeps happening. The lyrics of this track are pure modern day poetry.
Body Count keeps their sound varied throughout Bloodlust. The Ski Mask Way and Walk With Me… are the brand of metal-rap that only Body Count can deliver while the brutality of All Love Is Lost and Raining In Blood/Postmortem sees them reach the brutality that made them famous in the first place.
Perhaps the best tracks though on Bloodlust are the tracks where Body Count become a little bit creative and show the world they are still capable of doing things a little bit differently to everybody else. This Why We Ride sees the band further enhance their touching and emotional lyrics about a child dying with street noise sound effects that bring real atmosphere to the track. Meanwhile both Here I Go Again and Bloodlust feel like you are listening to a horror film as the first track is written from the point of view of a murderer and the second explores the notion that humans are the only animals that kill for sport.