Worn in Red - In the Offing (Cover Artwork)
Staff Review

Worn in Red

In the Offing (2009)

No Idea

Worn in Red is another of those rare, awesome bands who are clearly influenced by '90s screamo without actually adhering to all the strict principles of the style. Like labelmates Glass and Ashes, Worn in Red do a type of restrained but intense emotional punk with caustic, shredded vocals while belting out thoroughly engaging, stressed-out minor chords. Granted, it's a procedure that bears a slight lull through some of its course, but In the Offing is a largely enjoyable, engaging release despite that.

The band's long-awaited full-length kicks off with "Vital Joys," a condensed version of which originally appeared on the band's 2008 split 7" with Benard. It shaves off about a minute and 39 seconds, and thus, it isn't quite as epically powerful as before, but it's still a caustic, calamitous opener, and possibly the album's best track. Nowhere is a hook most effective than the one shouted to open the song/LP ("Play the role, / and play to win! / Play the role, / why question it?").

"When People Have Something to Say" picks up the tempo a little bit, while its follower, "Resigned Not Resigning," features some quieter hindrances. The push-pull dynamics of "As Best as We Can" give it a strong finish while "And You Knew" is like a less octave-dependent, heavier Kidcrash for its opening buildup until scratchily sung, bellowed vocals enter the fold for a little bit before the song ends the same tensely pretty way it started. "Mise en Abyme," while pretty much sticking to that formula, finds even greater success by crafting a similar agitation in its guitars before its curt end.

In the Offing is a familiarly moody and taut release. Recommended for fans of '90s screamo? Sure--just don't expect a straight rehash, though.

Piled Like Bricks
When People Have Something to Say
Mise en Abyme
Fort Reno