Body Count - Manslaughter
Album Review

Body Count – Manslaughter

We live in a world where bands frequently embrace lyrical violence. I mean, look at King 810 – they’re putting out videos which openly depict a life plunged into gang crime, they’re spewing out tracks like “Kill Em All”, all whilst simultaneously battling a court case for attempted murder. Some would argue otherwise, but this isn’t an act, this isn’t even a gimmick: this is real. Does this stop us from thinking they’re any less brilliant? Absolutely not. And they’re definitely not the only ones that this applies to. If anything, this all contributes to the band’s authenticity – and since when has Rock’n’Roll become safe, anyway?

For those of you that are wondering where I’m going at with this, chances are if you’ve heard of Body Count, it’s not because of the music. Well, maybe, but it’s more likely to be for that one song they did back in 1992 “Cop Killer”; which ultimately lead to the demise of their record deal at Warner. Were the lyrics provocative? Sure. Did they deserve the years of notoriety that followed? I’m not so sure.

That self-titled debut was released 22 years ago (that’s right, let that sink in a bit – 22 years) but Body Count are back with their 5th studio album and they’re honestly better than they ever have been. In fact, I don’t think they get nearly as much credit as they deserve. However, I do think this album has come at a perfect time to a generation that can fully appreciate this record for what it is: outrageously stupid fun (which also happens to be very, very good).

What’s for sure is that they haven’t calmed down, with Manslaughter setting the tone with opener track Talk S***, Get Shot saying it all. There’s heavy chugging chords, brutal metalcore breakdowns and a hell of an attitude. Frontman Ice-T still is still very much on point and as ferocious as he was back in the 90’s. The drumming is typically… Thrash, but there’s nothing wrong with that, and it totally serves it purpose (see Lars Ulrich if you’re not convinced). The quality of the record doesn’t drop once, either.

Stand out tracks are “Back To Rehab”, “Pop Bubble ft. Jamey Jasta”, “Bitch In The Pit” and more lyrically-intellectual “I Will Always Love You”. Regardless of who the original writer is, record closing “99 Problems BC (Rock Mix)” is an absolute gem too.

If you’re looking for a technically skilled, deep and intelligent band, this might not be the record for you. However, if you want to have a tonne of fun, you need this record in your life. A perfect blend of thrash, hardcore, punk, rock, metal and hip/hop, Body Count are showing the youth how metalcore should really be done. It honestly slams TRC, Hacktivist and all other rock-rap artists out of the water. I can’t promise that it’s a total game-changer, but you won’t be able to resist bopping your head – at the very least. See you in the pit.

– Mercedes Brown

Venue: Manslaughter
Support Band: Sumerian Records

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