While Body Count never released any truly groundbreaking albums, they did put out some really enjoyable records. Unfortunately, the music itself was ultimately eclipsed by the controversy over their first album, which was originally titled Cop Killer
and contained a song of the same name. Never mind that the song was actually a critique of police brutality rather than an affront to all police officers, but it still got the band a lot of ***. And since this is a side project of rapper Ice-T
, BC ended up as part of the media coverage of "violent, despicable gangsta rap with no redeeming values whatsoever", even though Body Count was actually a thrash metal and hardcore punk band and Ice-T didn't rap on their albums.
After a couple of thrash and punk-oriented albums, Violent Demise
is more musically heavy metal, for the most part, and should come as a pleasant surprise, although, like the rest of BC's catalog, it is nothing groundbreaking. But it is
an entertaining metal album, abiet from a band that is only known for one song and its vocalist.
Body Count is:
Ice T — Lead Vocals
Ernie-C — Lead Guitars and Guitar Synthesizer
D-Roc — Rhythm Guitars
Beatmaster V — Drums
Griz — Bass, Loops and Samples
Former bassist Mooseman had left the group by this point, and was later killed in a drive-by shooting in 2001, while Beatmaster V died of leukemia shortly after the album was completed. Violent Demise
is pretty light on the political and social commentary, and the lyrics, as a whole, are less humorous than that of the band's first two albums. Popular heavy metal themes are focused on, including mortality, evil, death, and sex - the latter being the subject of "Strippers" and "Bring It To Pain".
"Bring It To Pain" is one of the album's highlights - legitimately sexy, with a slow groove and the sound of a female orgasm rolling in the background. Another standout from the album is the O.J. Simpson-themed "I Used To Love Her". Told from the perspective of someone who kills his cheating wife, this song is essentially Ice's way of saying "he did it!" The other topical track on the album, "Dr. K", was written and sung by guitarist Ernie-C, and is the album's sole punk track, about calling up Jack Kevorkian for some assisted suicide. The album ends with "Last Days", another song based around the band's anti-racist message, stating that the human race is the only race.
Actually, it's not entirely true that Ice-T doesn't rap with Body Count. "My Way" is the sole example of rap-metal on this album, featuring the rap group Raw Breed. Murder 4 Hire
also opens with a rap-metal track, but, by and large, Ice tries to keep hip hop and metal separated. In any case, Violent Demise
comes closest to being Body Count's best album. If you can get past the idea that BC did other songs beside "Cop Killer".