Well America, you’ve gone and done it now – you’ve awakened a sleeping giant. This isn’t your parents’ Ice-T, the mild-mannered star of television’s Law And Order: Special Victims Unit, who takes his charm to affable new heights while selling lemonade alongside precocious kids in a current Geico commercial. No, this is BODY COUNT, the gangster-metal collective that made music fearsome to mainstream America, their renegade track “Cop Killer” sending politicians, parents and law enforcement officials into a proverbial tailspin when it was released unto the world a quarter-century ago. That’s not to say Ice-T and BODY COUNT have been silent over the past 25 years, but as Ice is quick to point out, you can’t start a movement if people aren’t willing to move.
“Music happens in climates,” the BODY COUNT frontman says when asked about his expectations for the band’s new opus, the aptly titled BLOODLUST, a razor-sharp collection of social right hooks and body blows that paint a picture of an America in utter and complete shambles. “Groups like Rage Against The Machine and Korn were born when the world was in turmoil, then music went into this delusional period where hip-hop became about nothing more than poppin’ bottles. Now we have impending doom again, racism is at an all-time high and it’s our season again. This is the optimal time for a BODY COUNT record – as an artist, you can be as pissed off as you want, but if the audience is dormant and care more about their chai lattes, well…”
White, black, blue or red, the songs on BLOODLUST are color-blind, eviscerating any lines that might separate Ice-T’s ‘Original Gangster’ roots, guitarist Ernie C’s searing metal guitar play, a who’s-who of guests that include Megadeth’s legendary Dave Mustaine on “Civil War,” Lamb Of God frontman Randy Blythe on “Walk With Me,” Sepultura/Soulfly icon Max Cavalera on “All Love Is Lost,” and even a hell-raising cover of Slayer’s classic “Reign In Blood.”