Sometime around 2010 American singer / author / actress Carla Harvey and singer / actress Heidi Shepherd – both of whom had worked for the Playboy Channel on TV – got together and formed heavy metal band Butcher Babies.
The instrumentation in the band is provided by guitarist Henry Flury, bassist Jason Klein and drummer Chris Warner. The band’s name is a reference to the Plasmatics single “Butcher Baby”, which is also found on that band’s 1980 record “New Hope For The Wretched”.
Heavily influenced by the music and look of Plasmatics singer Wendy O. Williams, the band have a very theatrical live show, and musically bands such as Slipknot, Slayer, Iron Maiden and Cannibal Corpse have been mentioned as influences in the past.
Debut album “Goliath” was released in 2013 and, whilst not setting the world alight in terms of either performance or songwriting, achieved reasonable success despite the band – or Carla and Heidi at least – receiving a good deal of criticism (particularly online) from people branding them as sluts and / or as fakes.
This is likely due in no small part to the pair’s appearance during the band’s early shows where they only wore electrical tape across the nipples (in tribute to the aforementioned Williams) but that aspect has long since disappeared to be replaced by more conservative attire (whilst still making the most of their feminine charms). Accused of using their sexuality to get ahead in the music world then, but is this approach really much different to that taken by any number of today’s pop princesses? Anyway, I digress…
Two years on comes studio album number two “Take It Like A Man”. Kicking off with lead single “Monsters Ball”. Through screams and roars the song kicks like a mule, but also shows that the two ladies can really sing as the track develops.
“Igniter”, meanwhile, simply threatens to take your head off. It’s fast, it’s brutal and it’s great! “Never Go Back”, “The Butcher”, “Marquee” and “For The Fight” are all heavy as hell and highlights of the album. It’s worth mentioned too that the guitar, bass and drums throughout this album are executed superbly.
They dial the tempo and aggression back a little for “Thrown Away” which is a kind of power ballad, and the re-recording of “Blonde Girls All Look The Same” – originally released as a single back in 2011 – rounds off the album in fast and furious fashion.
Although this isn’t an especially diverse record stylistically, it is one of consistently high quality, hits hard and makes for an excellent listen from start to finish. If you enjoy he work of the likes of In This Moment and Slipknot then this album is well worth checking out…
1. Monsters Ball / 2. Igniter / 3. The Cleansing / 4. The Butcher / 5. Gravemaker / 6. Thrown Away / 7. Never Go Back / 8. Marquee / 9. Blood Soaked Hero / 10. Dead Man Walking / 11. For The Fight / 12. Blonde Girls All Look The Same