Sicktus : Let me start by saying that this review is not going to be very objective. Since the 'Skin The Living' demo (1995) and debut album 'Slaughter The Weak' (1997), I've been a big fan of the blunt and catchy death metal created by Jungle Rot. Right, that being said: 'Order Shall Previal' is the eigth album by these guys (and a handful of demo / EP releases) and after 'Kill On Command' and 'Terror Regime', their third on Victory Records.
Founder, master growler, guitarist and frontman Dave Matrise, guitarist James Genenz and bassist Geoff Bub have been the band's hard core for some ten years now. On the predecessing two albums, the drums were bludgeoned by Jesse Beahler. On 'Order Shall Prevail' a new guy has crawled behind the kit, Joey Muha, who is also active with Canadians Threat Signal. Jungle Rot have never been a band where drummers were pulling off a lot of weird stunts, but my first impression of Muha is that he is a bit a more 'back to basic' drummer compared to Beahler, who sometimes had a little surprise in his breaks and fills. Muha has a more angular drum style, where Beahler had more rolling grooves and the fills by Muha on this album are a bit more sober as well. What I like about Jungle Rot the most, is the combination of blunt, effective riffing, catchy hooks, big grooves, well timed breaks and tempo changes, plus the brutal vocals by Dave Matrise, all glued together with a heavy and rich sound. All those elements are once again present on 'Order Shall Prevail', so no worries there.
I did rate the album a bit lower compared to its predecessors though. Whether it is the more austere drumming style or not, the band return to their roots a bit more. In this case, that means that the already sober and minimalistic songwriting has been dialed down a couple of notches more. Especially in the second half of the album, this has led to some fillers. 'The Dread Pestilence' has a great riff, but not much more than that. It is mainly the drums on this trakc that are just too monotonous and bland to really excite. 'Cast The First Stone' is also bludgeoning along in much the same pace. 'E.F.K.' (Eat Fuck Kill) and 'Trench Tactics' however lift the "B side" to a comfty 70+ rating, with "side A" delivering the goods, touching a 90 rating.
So, Jungle Rot will stay the kings of midtempo groove. Scratching the fillers, the album has enough variation due to the tactically placed breaks, speed-ups and some leads, while the basic ingredients of groove, blunt riffing and catchy hooks still make for a solid foundation. With 'Paralyzed Prey, 'Doomsday' and the title track, 'Order Shall Prevail' also delivers three instant live classics. Oh, and for some namedropping: Max Cavalera does some extra vocals on 'Fight Where You Stand'. 'Order Shall Prevail' will be out on CD, whether there will be a vinyl version is as of yet unknown.