Body Count was among the first bands to combine rap and metal, and was originally a cult phenomenon of the early 90’s with hit singels like Cop Killer. They never reached the heights of bands like Rage Against The Machine though, and later on they got somewhat forgotten on the metal scene and Ice-T was once again (even among metalheads) best known as a rap star. So I wasn’t the only one quite surprised when these guys made a sudden comeback a couple of years ago with the smashing success album Bloodlust (2017), an album that thrashed away every single so called Big 4 band of today! But still, there is also a feeling I’ve never been able to shake about this band, and that is how they always balance on the the edge of becoming silly. Sometimes they just fall over the edge. Let’s not forget these guys once made a song called Evil Dick!
Carnivore opens a litte unsettling with a title track sounds very much like the nu metal of the early 00s. Body Count work best when they sound more like Slayer than Coal Chamber and this is definately too much Coal Chamber. Luckily, the album quickly recovers with the forceful and aggressive Point The Finger, and after that, they just tear of one ball breaker after another, with Bum-Rush, Another Level and The Hate Is Real among the highlights. They also manage to shake off a more emotional side with the strong When I’m Gone, featuring Evanescences Amy Lee on background vocals. Even the obligatory cover tune, a cool interpretation of Motörheads indestructable Ace Of Spades, is a song they against all odds manage to pull off and that works surprisingly well with rap vocals.
Carnivore is a mixed bag, to sum it up, and overall, I’m a little let down of the direction on Carnivore. But the album has still grown on me and although it’s nowhere near Bloodlust, it’s still worth checking out. After all, few sounds are as forceful as an angry Ice-T rhyming away his lyrics about black lives matter on a carpet of thrash metal guitars and police sirens!
Artist: Body Count
Label: Century Media
Date of release: 6/3-20
Standout track: Point The Finger