Body Count have released their 3rd single from their new album, Bloodlust. This song is called Black Hoodie and follows the solid No Lives Matter and terrible The Ski Mask Way. The new album, Bloodlust will be released via Century Media Records on the 31st of March. Body Count are a cross over hip hop/metal band fronted by the legendary rapper Ice T.
Musically, the mix of rap vocals with heavy instruments gives Body Count a bit of a nu metal feel. Lyrically they mix between real life social issues and irritating gangsta stuff. They are lyrically strong and poignant when they keep to social issues but sound like angry rich guys trying to be street when they go the other way.
Black Hoodie is a 3 and half minute long track and returns to the theme of political and economical injustice of the first single, No Lives Matter. In particular, this time, it is police brutality that is focused on as it chronicles a police shooting. It is a fast track, in regards to the drum beat, riff and the pace of the rap vocals. It is delivered from the viewpoint of a person who has been shot by the police for wearing a black hoodie. The lyrics explain they weren’t doing anything wrong, they have been seen, judged and executed based purely on their image.
It is an emotive topic as it is something that is genuinely current and real. Much like No Lives Matter. It is a strong topic to deal with as it is something a lot of people care passionately about. Ice T delivers the vocals passionately making it sound like a subject he is angered deeply by. Musically Ernie C, on guitars is on fine form with a chugging, low toned riff throughout the verses. Ill Will bangs out a fast rhythm on the drums too but it is the bass that stands out in the early parts. Vincent Price plays a really loose sounding, slapping bass which sounds great.
The chorus of the song utilises the very recognisable “Whoop Whop, that’s the sound of the police”. Originally from KRS-One’s Sound of Da Police single. Something that has been sampled and used by a huge list of rap and hip hop stars. I guess that makes it quite unoriginal here, though it fits the song topic perfectly.
There are a few interesting guitar lines pulled in as the song draws to an end and the drums pick up the pace for a frenetic finish while the vocal lines of “My Black Hoodie” are repeated over and over.
Body Count are being very clever with the choice of topics they are covering on the album in Black Hoodie and No Lives Matter. They are important and dark topics with roots in realism that will matter to almost every listener. Vocally, Black Hoodie isn’t that inspiring though. Like many rap songs, it uses repetition to create rhymes which can be, well, repetitive. The addition of KRS-Ones track works well though and the music is solid with the bass and drums standing out.
I do get a bit confused about where this album is going though. Black Hoodie and No Lives Matter tend to be from the viewpoint of the victimised, but innocent, poor/normal people. The second single though, The Ski Mask Way, encouraged people to burgle anyone who had something they didn’t. It suggests you shouldn’t even try to earn money legitimately and instead should all be trying to get paid “The Ski Mask Way”.
I think Body Count are on to a winner here if they stick to the topics and themes of sociopolitical and economical injustice. Either way, they need to get the message straight – we are either victimised innocents or criminals. You can’t say we are victimised and then say “hey, let’s go rob people”. Black Hoodie though, just like No Lives Matters, get’s it right.
Check the song out for yourself here. It is also available now on all the usual streaming services such as Napster and Apple Music. If you like what you hear, you can pre order it on iTunes or on Amazon. Be sure to check out Body Count on Facebook or Twitter to keep up with future releases and other information.
The Final Score - 6/10
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