Butcher Babies is an American neo-thrash metalcore band from Los Angeles, CA. The band is fronted by Heidi Shepherd (vocals) and Carla Harvey (vocals), with Henry Flury (guitar), Jason Klein (bass) and Chrissy Warner (drums). They cite as influences Otep, In This Moment, Marilyn Manson, Slayer, Pantera, Slipknot, among many others. However, their biggest inspiration is found in the late Wendy O. Williams of punk/metal icons The Plasmatics. Butcher Babies‘ name is taken from The Plasmatics‘ song “Butcher Baby” (which appears on their 1980 debut New Hope For the Wretched), and, until recently, the two sexy frontwomen of Butcher Babies often wore electrical tape crossed over their nipples like Wendy O. Williams. Butcher Babies are also influenced by violent horror movies such as The Texas Chainsaw Massacre, House of 1000 Corpses, The Devil’s Rejects, etc, which is apparent in the band’s lyrics and shock-rocking live performances in which the two frontwomen are regularly doused in blood. Both Shepherd and Harvey are not only singers, but models and actresses, too; and, Harvey, my new favorite sexy-hot female rocker, is a comic book fangirl and author.
Carla Harvey, originally from Detroit, MI, is biracial and, as such, endured ridicule for her preferred taste in metal and hard rock which only strengthened her desire to do what she wanted, how she wanted. She started out as an entertainment reporter for the Playboy Channel, and has appeared in several movies and TV shows (including various episodes of Spike TV‘s MANswers with Shepherd). Her first comic book (with illustrator Anthony Lee Winn), Butcher Babies (based, obviously, on her band), was released at Comic Con 2011. Her recent graphic novel (also with Winn), published in 2013, is Soul Sucka, a Blaxploitation-influenced “look at America’s dark history through the eyes of an ass kicking, attitude wielding, Afro wearing, black vampiress in search of her roots.” Harvey, surprisingly (or not) also has a degree in Mortuary Science. Oh, and best of all, Harvey once attended an all-girl private Catholic high school! But, this blog is about music, right?
Butcher Babies‘ self-titled EP (2012) boasts a cover that reflects the frontwomen’s love of horror films, looking like the poster for a Rob Zombie movie that was never made. But, the EP lives up to that artwork’s promise with 4 tracks exploding with extreme metalcore riffs and violent lyric imagery. “Axe Wound” opens (pun intended) the EP with this warning from a woman scorned: “I am not your savior / I’m your Anti-Christ.” In “Mr. Slowdeath”, driven by a Motley Crue-ish riff, the women, apparently, speak of how everything in your life comes back to haunt you. Silly me, I thought it was about drug addiction! “Jesus Needs More Babies for His War Machine” drives it’s provocative title into your brain with an addictive (meat) hook. And, in the brief final track, “National Bloody Anthem”, the women scream, repeatedly, “There’s…blood…everywhere!” over a Nirvana-esque guitar riff hiding under all the metal mayhem. Awesome EP!
Watch the video for “Mr. Slowdeath” here:
Watch a behind-the-scenes look at the video for “Magnolia Blvd” here:
2012.05.29 – Butcher Babies [EP]
2013.07.09 – Goliath [Album]