By Dr. Abner Mality

There goes the neighborhood! Body Count raises its ugly head after a long incarceration. One of the most controversial bands to ever exist, I’ve had extremely mixed feelings about their past output. How does “Bloodlust” stack up?

South Central never meant a shit to me, I was raised in a cornfield, but damn, this band has improved on almost every phase from what they’ve done in the past. “Bloodlust” is a diverse and well produced album with a great sound and songs that keep your attention even if you don’t know anything about dying in a bloody heap in the streets. Even Ice-T, Body Count’s general, sounds far better than he has before, when he was a major downfall of the band. He uses his voice better and finds ways to mesh it effectively with the heavy tunes here. They do an awesome cover of Slayer’s “Raining Blood” and in a monologue before the song, T admits that Body Count is a mix of Slayer, Black Sabbath and Suicidal Tendencies. You can hear all those influences here. “Here I Go Again” is a genuinely disturbing and creepy tale of murder with a definitely doom-laden and Sabbath feel to it. “Walk With Me” is blazing hot thrash that further tips the hat to Slayer. “Black Hoodie” is a rolling, catchy tune with a Suicidal touch. The album’s sound is great and if you liked the guitar on recent Slayer and Exodus albums, you’ll like this.

The constant gangsta lyrics and heavy profanity tire me out and eventually kind of put me in a zone of numbness. But it would be crazy for Ice T to start singing about Satan or J.R.R. Tolkien. Even though he’s achieved stardom and been out of the hood for a long time, he addresses that issue on “That’s Why We Ride”, which is a cool heavy tune with a lot of melody.

Body Count has matured on “Bloodlust” but thankfully not to the point where they’ve gotten all “civilized”. A surprisingly good album.