JUNGLE ROT
"Jungle Rot"

(Victory)

01. Send Forth Oblivion
02. Delusional Denial
03. A Burning Cinder
04. Triggered
05. Fearmonger
06. Stay Dead
07. Glory for the Fallen
08. Pumped Full of Lead
09. Twisted Mind
10. Terrible Certainty (KREATOR cover)

RATING: 8/10

Call them thrash, call them death metal, call them deathcore, whatever. JUNGLE ROT has been on the scene since the early nineties, long enough to chew up 14 drummers and six bassists, prior to James Genenz, who's been in the group since 2004, firstly as a guitarist. Dave Matrise, who came to JUNGLE ROT after being hired in 1993 by long-departed founding members Joe Harte and Joe Thomas, is the sole survivor from the old days.

Matrise and Genenz are joined by guitarist Geoff Bub with returning drummer, Jesse Beahler, whose session performances on JUNGLE ROT's new self-titled album are lethal. Retaining the production services of Chris Djuricic, the new album is thus cleaner and tighter, though plenty rambunctious.

Every thrash and hardcore mode JUNGLE ROT can lace into sequential motion spikes the punchy opener "Send Forth Oblivion", while it takes a minute-long windup (old-school style) to lock in "Delusional Denial"'s speed gears.

If you know JUNGLE ROT already, there's not a ton more elaboration needed to describe the remainder of the album. Thrash, death metal and hardcore are all the main ingredients and they're spooled fluidly with perhaps a touch more finesse than before. BIOHAZARD plays a big part in "Triggered", "Twisted Mind" and "Pumped Full of Lead"'s stomp-a-thons, while "Stay Dead" builds from SLAYER's slower slogs.

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"Fearmonger" is the focal track of the album, and it's a scorching display of aggression made more exciting by the sinewy squelching of none other than DESTRUCTION's Schmeir. While in a German thrash mind frame, JUNGLE ROT dishes an initially messy, later ripping cover of KREATOR's "Terrible Certainty".

Why it took this long to eponymously title a JUNGLE ROT album, much less why at all, who knows, but the band's longtime faithful looking for their mosh fix will have their fill aplenty here.

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