Jungle Rot Order Shall Prevail 01Looking at my calendar whilst putting my finishing touches on this review, it’s one day after the official release date of Jungle Rot‘s latest record Order Shall Prevail and the digital presses have ceased for the day. Some slight lateness matters little; the album’s been up for streaming, and those interested have doubtlessly heard it already and those uninterested have continued not to care one iota about its existence. Jungle Rot produces a specific type of music that caters solely to their established audience, and Order Shall Prevail doesn’t mess with the formula. This leads me to believe that before even reading what I’m about to write here you’ve made up your mind about whether or not the new Jungle Rot is worth your time or money, and whichever side of the fence you err on, you’re probably correct.

We’ll often see Jungle Rot described as “meat n’ potatoes death metal” throughout the metalverse, and while this description isn’t necessarily wrong, it misses the bigger picture. What Jungle Rot does more noticeably on their later releases is make death metal that on the surface still sounds indebted to Obituary and Bolt Thrower, but structurally and compositionally is a lot closer to New York hardcore a la Madball and NYHC disciples Hatebreed. This is due to their “maximum violence” approach that relies on attempting to produce a physical reaction in the listener by the use of pounding hardcore influenced rhythms, nearly constant chugging, jarring tempo shifts, and beatdown styled breaks in what are generally catchy and relatively concise songs. A closer examination of their riffs show a major debt to the NYHC scene as well, but the best latter day Rot songs walk a tightrope between the two styles and produce some pretty kinetic material that gets the blood pumping nicely.

The entire value of Jungle Rot lies in the fact that they are, at heart, simple entertainment that doesn’t challenge the listener nor demand close attention and analysis, but is fun to play loud and headbang along to. It definitely has its value, much in the same way a no-brainer action flick hits the spot sometimes; every now and again, we all just want to see some shit get blown up. “Doomsday” opens Order Shall Prevail with exactly what you’d expect, culminating in a beatdown that’s essentially a better version of the one in Kill on Commands “Blood Ties.” Max Cavalera showing up to lend his vocals to “Fight Where You Stand” was a nice touch, and Jungle Rot accommodates him with some riffing comparative to Cavalera Conspiracy, which ends up pretty entertaining with the co-conspiring Cavalera’s vicious and quick phrasing being a treat to hear. The title track sees the best merger of their meathead death metal and NYHC leanings, and not coincidentally is the record’s finest showing with a pummeling and well executed earworm of a staccato riff being particularly enjoyable.

Jungle Rot Order Shall Prevail 02

What prevents Order Shall Prevail and Jungle Rot on a whole from being great is that their sound is consistent in aesthetics but not in quality, and in turn doesn’t tend to hold up well over the course of a full album. Taken piecemeal, there’s nothing really that bad on Order Shall Prevail; taken as intended in the form of a full record yields the inescapable feeling that they sort of lost the plot about halfway through. Whether it’s the pendulum swinging too close to pure NYHC for comfort on “The Dread Pestilence,” the overuse of an unremarkable riff and variations of it on “I Cast the First Stone,” or “E.F.K.” sounding like a middling outtake scraped off of Max Cavalera’s cutting room floor in the mid-aughts, the record is front-loaded and it shows. “Nuclear Supremacy” inexplicably decides to emulate Obituary at their most nondescript, and the only real moment of sheer headbanging and blood-pumping glee in the second half is the midsection pummeling in “Trench Tactics,” but you’ll have to get through some uninspiring thrash-ish NYHC riffs to hear it.

So there you have it, another Jungle Rot album that, chances are, turned out exactly as you’d have expected it to. Fans can be contented, as this is essentially business as usual, and the choice cuts will go over like gangbusters live. The production is clean, chunky, and nearly identical to the last two records, although Joey Muha’s kick drum sounds less obnoxious and overall better than ex-drummer Jesse Beahler’s did. There’s somewhere around a half album’s worth of pretty damn good stuff to add to your Jungle Rot/aggro/gym playlist if you’re so inclined, but on a whole Order Shall Prevail definitely has filler problems that cannot be overlooked. Neither entirely disagreeable nor terribly exciting, overall mediocrity shall, and did, prevail.

Rating: 2.5/5.0
DR: 7 | Format Reviewed: 320 kbps mp3
Label: Victory Records
Websites: JungleRotOfficial | Facebook.com/JungleRot
Release Dates: Out Worldwide: 06.29.2015

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  • kaeru92

    Guess I’m not on that side of the fence then…

    • Gonzalo Salazar

      At first, I didn’t like it.
      But then, I got all exited by HDH’s basement party, and found myself lightly headbanging to it while reading the posts.
      So I stole the fence, and used it as a travois to drag the 480 bottles of Red Dog I bought for 10$.

  • Handy Donut Hole

    I have always appreciated Jungle Rot for exactly what they intend to be. Simplistic, old school, death metal that I can jam loudly while drinking warm beer and chilling on my sofa. Nothing more, nothing less.

    • Why the hell are you drinking warm beer?

      • Handy Donut Hole

        Warm beer pairs well with this band. The beer also has to be a little bit flat.

        • brutal_sushi

          Sound like a basement party!

          • Handy Donut Hole

            You’re invited!

          • brutal_sushi

            Let me get the 30 rack of Schaefer’s out of my trunk and get my jean jacket. Its gonna be a looooooong night!

        • Perhaps paired with some stale chips?

          • Handy Donut Hole

            A valid choice but I was thinking that stale pretzels with a minimal amount of salt would be even better

          • Dr. A.N. Grier

            You Tecate for that.

        • When I was 16, Red Dog beer was all the rage, and a friends older brother used to buy it for me and my friends. It was awesome to drink beer in your friends basement when you were 16. Then like 5-6 years ago (Im 37 now), for the hell of it, I saw like a 48 pack of Red Dog on sale for 99 cents and I bought it. It was terrible. I dont know how that relates to this topic, but since the topic of warm flat beer came up, I figured what the hell. Oh, and Zima was terrible, even when I was 16.

          • Zima was definitely sub par, but was actually good as a drink on a hangover morning. It was better than Tango at any rate.

          • Diabolus_in_Muzaka

            You found 48 beers for 99 cents? Mr. Eckman, you’ve exploded my Canadian mind. I can’t even get one beer for 99 cents! I could get 480 beers for the price of 6 cheap cans up here!

          • Monsterth Goatom

            Damn sin tax. Still, Happy Canada Day to us!

          • I apologize for the exaggeration. Red Dog is about the cheapest filth you can buy. I think they sell them in 30 packs for $10.99 or something like that. Comparatively, a 24 pack of Budweiser is usually around $13.99 – $15.99 depending on where you go. My work has an office in Toronto, and Ive been up there and been appalled at the price you Canucks pay for alcohol. If you’re ever in Chicago, let me know and I’ll buy you some (good) cheap microbrews! :)

          • Diabolus_in_Muzaka

            I’m always up for trying new beers! Plus I’ve not been to Chicago since they were filming The Dark Knight there, and it would be nice to go back. Every time I’m in the States it’s shocking to see 24 Buds sell for a little bit more than 6 do here. I’ve never even heard of Red Dog before today though, our terrible stuff here is basically Olde English and things with Ice in the name.

          • Gonzalo Salazar

            That would be US dollars…
            And the beer you find in Québec’s dépanneurs (convenience stores) goes up to 9%.

          • Diabolus_in_Muzaka

            Quebec yes, Ontario no. We can’t even buy cases of 12 or 24 at our liquor stores which sell beer only in small quantities. La Fin Du Monde is great Quebec beer that’s potent, but it comes to $10 for 4 bottles, and only two stores in my not small city have it. With Mike’s cost of Bud above, at the top end of $16 for 24, it comes to $21.50 post conversion. Compared to the $40 that costs here, still pretty good. I wish we took cues from Quebec in that regard, but rampant corruption in our provincial government that borders on absurdist comedy blocks such things from happening.

          • Gonzalo Salazar

            40$ for a 24? of Bud?!
            The prohibition ended almost a century ago.
            It makes me want to break bottles by means of a facepalm.
            You can pay as little as 20$ if you watch the signs on the dépanneurs or if you look at the rebates in the grocery flyers.
            No wonder all the people from Ottawa cross the river to raid our alcohol supplies.

          • Monsterth Goatom

            It seems we pay a lot more for everything compared to the U.S. However, those in central Canada are a lot better off than those up North in Nunavut when it comes to grocery prices. In Iqaluit, you’ll pay like $10 for a 4L jug of milk, $38 for one Ribeye steak — and that’s after the price reduction from the “Nutrition North” Government subsidy program.

      • Monsterth Goatom

        Maybe she/he is in the U.K.?

      • Monsterth Goatom

        I’m no Beer Sommelier, but most people say the crappier the beer, the colder it has to be served. A lot of people in Czech, for example, don’t keep their beer ice cold. Most keep it in the garage, next to the fridge, or in the cellar. Czechs will sometimes joke that they prefer the beer stored on the “fourth” or “third” step down to the cellar. Back me up here, Martin.

        I’ve drunk Gambrinus Premium both cold and room-temperature, and I find it actually tastes better at room-temp. I guess it’s kind of like a good red wine — you wouldn’t stick that in the fridge.

        I’m actually spoiled now by Czech beer. Everything else I drink can’t compete with beers from the country that created Pilsner and Budweiser.

      • Óðinn

        I was thinking the same thing.

      • ActualBastard

        I just knew there couldn’t be 30 comments on a Jungle Rot review about the actual album. This makes more sense.

  • Judging by the cover art, this would be a pretty cool video game! :)

    • Diabolus_in_Muzaka

      I’d play it!

  • Just finished listening to the linked track. It has made me crave Dream Theatre, which is rare.

  • Carlos Marrickvillian

    I don’t mind that embedded song it would sit nicely in a DM playlist.
    Though it feels like the BPM should’ve been bumped up a bit.