Although the world has become a kinder, more politically correct place since the band released its controversial self-titled debut in 1992, Body Count's fifth album, Manslaughter, makes it clear that the band has skipped the sensitivity classes. Whether Body Count are dealing with issues like gender, welfare, or addiction, things are always, for better or worse, dealt with as bluntly as possible. On "Get a Job," Ice-T laments about dealing with poor people with a rousing chorus of "I got a problem too/I keep feeding you," a sentiment made all the more confusing by "Enter the Dark Side," a punishing slow burner about living in the ghetto where the rapper bellows, "Don't ever judge a man 'til you've lived his life." Meanwhile, "Bitch in the Pit" finds the band giving props to all the ladies out there who are unafraid to mix it up in the mosh pit with a blast of rowdy, circle pit-inducing thrash metal. The album also finds the band looking to the past for inspiration, delivering a metal rendition of Ice-T's "99 Problems" from Home Invasion (which was later sampled by Jay-Z) on "99 Problems BC," adding a metal edge to the song as the rapper rolls through his list of sexual conquests. There's also a nod to crossover thrash pioneers Suicidal Tendencies on "Institutionalized 2014," which substitutes social frustrations for first-world problems with a series of rants about being nagged by your spouse for playing video games, dealing with foreign customer service representatives when you're having problems with your e-mail, and being hassled by vegans because you're eating meat. Though the song lacks the sense of agitation of the original, like many of the songs on Manslaughter, Body Count are able to make it fun. At this stage, Body Count haven't changed much, and really aren't likely to, which means that if you were on board with their earlier work, then Manslaughter has even more rap-influenced metal to fuel your rage. However, if you weren't sold on these guys in the first place, this album isn't likely to change your mind.
AllMusic Review by Gregory Heaney