Tag Archives: body count

“Murder 4 Hire” by Body Count

Artist: Body Count
Title: “Murder 4 Hire”
Label: Escapi Music
Release Date: 8/1/2006
Genre: Metal Rap
Rating: 1/5

When Ice-T first decided to meld Heavy Metal and Punk riffs with his Rap it arrived with minimal fanfare or overall interest as at the time the two styles very rarely mixed nor did people hold both as interests in the same sitting. You either liked Rap or you liked Metal and the train only met previously when Anthrax goofed around with “I’m The Man” and Faith No More used some rap essence in their hit “Epic”. One of the Body Count tracks was “Cop Killer” and if certain politicians and leaders never turned their attention to the song then many feel that Body Count would have become a failed experiment, die a quiet death and have Ice turn back to his rapping and acting efforts. The resulting buzz and fervor about this track however ended up making the original release an impossible find and collector’s item. It sold so much that the record company had to re-release a version without the controversial track. That was then, and this is now where we find a number of Body Count releases surfacing to those who might find interest in them still. Two DVD’s featuring concert appearances have been released (on Escapi Music and Eagle Vision) and now this new CD which comes care of Escapi Music as well.
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“Live In L.A.” by Body Count

Artist: Body Count
Title: “Live In L.A.”
Label: Escapi Music
Release Date: 11/15/2005
Genre: Punk Metal
Rating: 6/10

Ice-T’s excursion into Heavy Metal with Body Count was certainly and interesting ride when it was first done. The group gained a fair amount of critical backlash based on the song “Cop Killer” which made an ignored album an impossible to find collectable. The group had a decent show of support from some people yet did not go over in anything more than a cult status. This was probably due to the musical time that it happened during. There was not as much acceptance when crossover bands where doing their thing. This was mostly the case when Rap and Rock of any sort was involved. Of course that has changed very much in today’s music scene where Rap finds its way into most Rock music and most bands who come around at least in the USA all seem to have a D.J as a member. Given that information Body Count is now something that finds its cult status elevated based on the impact that Ice-T had as a performer in acting and rapping. This DVD was filmed at L.A.’s famed Troubadour Club and the show is described as a one-off Memorial Concert. This was done because many members of the band have died since it was first conceived and from the original lineup only Ice-T and guitarist Ernie C. remain. The show is essentially a tribute or “Shout Out” to Mooseman, Beatmaster D and D-Roc. Two had lost battles with Cancer while the other was the victim of gang violence. The set is a tight one and at 17 songs is bound the please the Body Count fan or anyone else who enjoys hard-hitting Hardcore/Metal. The DVD is a several camera shoot that does well in capturing a live performance of the band in this club and I felt visually it was better than the recently issued “Smoke-Out” DVD. Since this is the bands own performance, the set is longer than that DVD offered as well. I did have some issue with the lack of being able to click through the set list but I am not sure if this was because I watched a reviewers copy and not a final release. There are no bonus features on the DVD and that would have been a good thing especially given that it was a Memorial show. A bonus CD of three songs from a forthcoming Body Count record are included. As mentioned above if this band was high on your list then this is for you. It was not a bad listen/viewing in my honest opinion but it was very lackluster in terms of features and functionality.
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“Smokeout Festival Presents: Body Count featuring Ice-T” by Body Count

Artist: Body Count
Title: “Smokeout Festival Presents: Body Count featuring Ice-T”
Label: Eagle Vision
Release Date: 10/4/2005
Genre: Metal/Punk
Rating: 6/10

In 1992 Rapper Ice-T unleashed on the world his Rap Infused Metal band “Body Count”. The self-titled CD was largely ignored at the time because Rap and Metal were not really something that was easily accepted back then. When you add to this the fact that this was more of a Hard Core Punk than Metal act as well it really would have died a quiet death leaving Ice-T to move onto his next project very easily once he got this out of his system. That was until some politicians saw it as a platform to help their causes when they realized there was a track called “Cop Killer” on the record. From there it was lambasted on all sides and this record that was selling worse than anyone envisioned was suddenly impossible to find and very expensive if you did find it. Eventually the original record was banned and the sensitive track removed from it in order for the album to be able to return to retail shelves. I owned that original album and never felt that Ice-T was telling people to kill police officers; instead I remember his press release on it as he stressed he was positioning himself in the shoes of a typical L.A. street gang member. South Central L.A. was a war zone at the time as Ice-T referenced and this mental state was always a factor in that type of individual. Maybe this was not a smart move or perhaps it was a work of genius. It certainly is on the record books based on the firestorm that surrounded it that’s for sure.
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