Jungle Rot is an American Death Metal band from Kenosha, Wisconsin, USA and was formed as a side project for Jim Harte and Joe Thomas who were members of Prisoner and released a demo. In 1993 long standing member and vocalist and guitarist Dave Matrise joined the band and they recorded another demo (Skin the Living) in ’95 with Matrise taking over main responsiblities for the band. The band later was signed to Pure Death Records and released Skin the Living as a redone debut studio album. The current line up also consists of James Genez on bass, Jesse Beahler on drums and Geoff Bub also on guitars. This is Jungle Rot’s tenth studio album.
The album opens up with a blistering guitar riff, lots of shredding and double bass on the drums, showing once again that Jungle Rot know how to blend together that fusion of the speed of thrash metal and the brutal crush stomp of death metal. There’s a lot of differentiation in the riffs for a death metal band, where as most bands like to play this one solid crushing riff, Jungle Rot, is here to ambush you with a barrage of thrashy death metal firepower and Matrise’s vocals kick in like a pissed off Drill Sergeant and kicks you in the face, this record is angry, raw and has things to say. Not only is this a war album, but its got political elements to it delves into social and political commentery with “Human nature manifests, societal downfall comes fast, Egomanical beings, consuming all we can”
Fearmonger is a track that I want to talk about because it shows a point earlier I made about the band having a lot of elemental thrash in their music, even though Jungle Rot is first and foremost a death metal band they regularly use a lot of thrashy riffs and drumming, and not only does it sound very thrashy, it also features thrash metal legend Schmier from Germany’s Destruction on guest vocals. Starts off like you’d expect most old 80s thrash songs would, with Matrise bringing his vocals front and centre, before getting engaged in an epic battle with Schmier, his shrieking vocals bringing images of demons battling the shellshocked soldier, plenty of thrashy guitar work and some hard hitting drums that never let up, some thunderous sounding bass and the best guitar solo on the album, this me air guitaring along the entire time, before decending into an almighty death stomp with the drums.
Glory for the Fallen starts off much slower and really channels a lot of the early Jungle Rot with a more traditional sounding death metal style, fans of bands such as Obituary, Morbid Angel and Cannibal Corpse will love this, and the guitar solos inject a level of harmony that compliment and break up the crushing churning death metal riffs, another stand out track that shows that Jungle Rot is more than capable of creating traditional sounding death metal that still has their own signature on it. And Pumped Full of Lead and a cover of Kreator’s Terrible Uncertainty end the album with their signature thrashy/death style.
Jungle Rot have once again delivered another consistant album that pulls no punches, gives zero fucks and is one that will continue to please their core fan base while also inviting in newer fans. While it doesn’t offer much in the way of originality and is unlikely to please everyone, its definetly a banger for those who love Jungle Rot and love straight foward death metal that isn’t afraid to speak its mind. This is an album I was looking foward to and I am glad to say, its held up to my expectations.