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Legendary rap metal band BODY COUNT premieres the first single from their forthcoming album, “Merciless”

Though recording wrapped up last year, the release date for “Merciless” remains undisclosed. The band’s ongoing collaboration with producer Will Putney, who snagged the 2021 Grammy for Best Metal Performance for his work on their song “Bum-Rush,” made the choice for this track’s guest vocalist a no-brainer: FIT FOR AN AUTOPSY‘s frontman Joe Badolato.

You can check it out below.

Merciless“ serves as the successor to 2020’s “Carnivore” and is expected to hit the shelves later this year via Century Media.

Back in July of 2023, BODY COUNT frontman Ice-T tweeted the following update: “The New @BodyCountBand album is being Mixed as we speak ‘MERCILESS‘”.

Going back even further, to October of 2022, Ice-T made an appearance on the “Paltrocast With Darren Paltrowitz” and discussed the upcoming BODY COUNT record, saying: “Will Putney‘s producing again. We’ve had three consecutive great albums working with Will; he understands. I call him ‘the Dr. Dre of metal,’ because he has the ability to produce different groups but make them sound like themselves, but just better.

We did ‘Carnivore’, and right [when] our first date of touring was supposed to start, COVID hit,” he continued. “COVID hit, shut down all the stateside tour; 35 European festivals shut down; and we didn’t really get to really perform the album; we didn’t get to go out, and that kind of sucks.

“You make albums to perform ’em; you don’t make ’em just [to sit at home]. And we won a Grammy on that one. That was great; that was a great accolade. It kind of took the sting out of dropping an album to a dead scene; it took the sting out of it. But then the label’s, like, ‘Okay, we’ll do another album.’ And I’m, like, ‘Wait a minute. We didn’t even really get this one out good.”

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Also discussing his process for recording vocals for BODY COUNTIce-T said: “Usually when I do songs, I’ll do the songs but I don’t complete ’em. Like, if there’s gonna be three verses, I’ll sing two and then I kind of live with them, and maybe that way I can think about how I wanna end the song and how I wanna change it up.

“I’m at a point now… When I first used to do albums, I would do, like, 20 songs and then try to pick 12. Now I’m very difficult to find the music, so by the time I pick 12, those are the 12 songs. I’m not doing a whole bunch of recording just to find that… I know what I’m doing. I’m like that photographer that knows how to just wait until the right moment to take the picture: ‘Okay, that’s one… two.’ Versus the guy [who takes a bunch of pictures one after the other]. I don’t need to do that.

“So the ‘Merciless’ album is sounding pretty hard, though,” Ice-T added. “We named the motherfucker ‘Merciless’.”

At the 63rd annual Grammy Awards held in March 2021 in Los Angeles, BODY COUNT received a prestigious honor during the pre-telecast ceremony. They were awarded a Grammy in the coveted “Best Metal Performance” category. The nomination was for their powerful track “Bum-Rush,” featured on their album “Carnivore.” The recognition further solidified BODY COUNT‘s impact and contribution to the metal genre.

BODY COUNT formed in Los Angeles back in 1990, and featured the original lineup of Ice-T, guitarist Ernie C, drummer Beatmaster V, bassist Mooseman, and guitarist D-Roc. The Ice-T fronted group gained massive attention for its unique fusion of metal and rap, addressing social and political issues with a raw and aggressive sound.

The band’s self-titled debut album, “Body Count,” released in 1992, featured the controversial track “Cop Killer,” which sparked intense public debate and drew criticism from various quarters, however, despite the controversy, the LP showcased BODY COUNT‘s powerful blend of metal and rap elements and became a massive success.

Over the years, the lineup has seen various changes, but Ice-T and Ernie C have remained a constant force, guiding the band through various releases. With albums like “Born Dead,” “Violent Demise: The Last Days,” and more recently, “Carnivore” in 2020, BODY COUNT has continued to evolve its sound while maintaining a bold and socially conscious approach.

Known for their energetic live performances and unapologetic lyrical content, BODY COUNT has carved a niche in the metal scene, blending genres and pushing boundaries. The band’s longevity and relevance attest to its enduring impact on the crossover between metal and hip-hop.

Speaking of which, the band have also announced a run of tour dates for 2024 which can also be found below.

BODY COUNT 2024 tour dates thus far:

June 05 – Gdansk, Poland – Mystic Festival
June 01 – Hamburg, Germany – Edel Optics Arena
June 08 – Nürnberg, Germany – Rock Im Park
June 09 – Eifel, Nürburg, Germany – Rock Am Ring
June 11 – Berlin, Germany – Citadel Music Festival
June 13 – Hradec Kralove, Czech Republic – Rock For People
June 14 – Budapest, Hungary – Budapest Park
June 15 – Nickelsdorf, Austria – Nova Rock
June 16 – Zagreb, Croatia – SRC Salata
June 17 – Zurich, Switzerland – Komplex 457
June 18 – Lausanne, Switzerland – Les Docks
June 20 – Nummijarvi, Finland – Nummirock
June 22 – Copenhagen, Denmark – Copenhell
June 23 – Dessel, Belgium – Graspop Metal Meeting
June 25 – Luxembourg, Luxembourg – Rockhal
June 26 – Amsterdam, Netherlands – Paradiso
June 27 – Ysselsteyn, Netherlands – Jera On Air
June 28 – Clisson, France – Hellfest
June 30 – London, UK – 02 Kentish Town Forum
July 01 – Manchester, UK – The Ritz
July 02 – Glasgow, UK – SWG3 (Galvanizers)