Monday 23 March 2020

ALBUM REVIEW: Body Count, "Carnivore"

By: Richard Maw

Album Type: Full Length
Date Released: 06/03/2020
Label: Century Media Records

“Carnivore” CD//DD//LP track listing:

1). Carnivore
2). Point The Finger
3). Bum-Rush
4). Ace of Spades
5). Another Level
6). Colors
7). No Remorse
8). When I’m Gone
9). Thee Critical Breakdown
10). The Hate Is Real

Tbe Review:

Body Count and Ice-T are back with another full length, 2017's “Bloodlust” was a good album, as was “Manslaughter” from a year or two before that. “Carnivore” continues the metal and hardcore hybrid with, of course, the street level vibe and attitude you'd expect from a man first known as a rapper and then an actor.

The title track is hard as nails, “Point The Finger” is a Hatebreed-esque blast of nastiness directed against the police- presumably of the US. The production is once again stellar. Thick guitars and bass, drums compressed and brutal through the triggers. “Bum-Rush” is a revved up hip hop track, rhythmically, with plenty of wailing leads and political lyrics- the kind of thing Ice-T excels at, pretty much.

For a man in his 60s to still be this angry makes me wonder just what Ice thinks about the current Coronavirus pandemic and the injustice of it. Maybe the next album will tell us? At track 4 is a real curve ball... a cover of “Ace of Spades”! If “Raining Blood” on “Bloodlust” was triumphant, well this is pretty much the same. It helps that it's one of the best songs ever written- any genre- and also that Ice has a connection with Lemmy and Motorhead having appeared on a version of “Born To Raise Hell” for the Airheads soundtrack. The themes are right up Ice's street, so it works. A respectful and successful homage.

Jamey Jasta pops up for “Another Level” in a solid and different guest vocal, while the track is moody and dark- not all righteous fury. Next up is the Ice-T classic “Colors”- given a 2020 makeover. Many metalheads of the 90s will recall the Machine Head cover of this track as a bonus on “The More Things Change”- which was a straight hip hop cover. This is a metallic version of the same song. It's a hip hop classic and, much like the “Ace of Spades”, it works in any setting as it's a strong song!

The atonal and chugging “No Remorse” follows and is a more lunkheaded take on wilful self-determination than, say, Suicidal Tendencies would come up with. It's a rare weaker track. Amy Lee pops up for “When I'm Gone” after a heartfelt intro from Ice about the origins of the song. For me, this is not the style I listen to Body Count for- the riffage is again dull and chugging. Fortunately, “Thee Critical Beatdown” is much more like it- old school Body Count and values in full effect. It's a banger and sounds exactly how you want it to. The late-album lull is thus ended.

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