Following up 2015’s rather spiffy Luminescent Wake, Norway’s Timeworn are back with Venomous High, an improvement on their debut and an early Mastodon-esque affair that bristles with it’s own intensity while still paying homage to prog metals favourite sons.
Their hardcore roots are still evident but Timeworn are now a more diverse entity, incorporating a little psych rock amidst a heady mix of massive fuckin’ riffs, just a smidgen of dissonance and a shit tonne of fiendish melody! The result is a fresh take on old tales (and we’re not just referring to the timeworn [sic] metal tradition of Lovecraftian lyrical themes) that marks out Timeworn as a band with massive potential.
The chanting opening of “Measure Of Gold” chills the soul but it’s the roars and riffs – recalling Remission-era Mastodon – that truly engage, instantly engulfing the senses with primal rage and no shortage of nuance. This is where Timeworn excel, in their innate ability to showcase subtlety while still maintaining a ferocious demeanour. The short and sweet “All Chiefs” expertly combines these facets by being uncommonly aggressive while offering glimpses of soothing post-metal ambience and the album continues down this path as it progresses.
Progression is an apt term here as Timeworn have seemingly moved mountains to further enhance their sound and it has worked well for them, drawing their battle-lines in the dirt and cementing their position as progressive sludge metallers of serious proficiency.
The Mastodon comparisons are rife (and we are by no means the only one’s to comment on this if other reviews are to go by) but Timeworn are onto something here and let’s face it, we all miss the old Mastodon, right? 8/10
Venomous High is out now! Purchase it via Timeworn’s Bandcamp.