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Wow. Well here we have one of the first reviews I ever wrote for the site, and I sort of held off on revising some of these initial entries because I expected to be embarrassed by many of my original appraisals. Naildown is no exception here, and while their sophomore effort Dreamcrusher isn't quite the second-rate gem I originally lauded it as, World Domination has held up fairly well. Defining what Naildown precisely is requires some analogies akin to a patchwork quilt. We have the obvious Children of Bodom influence insofar as flashy, pinch-harmonic driven riffs and spastic leadwork, all tied together with upbeat tempos and vocals that tread the line between typical harsh inoffensiveness and cleaner Soilwork worship. To their credit, Naildown pull it off fairly well, and Freyburg is the true mastermind here. I was so excited when he joined the then-deflated Norther, and although that collaboration never truly went anywhere, it doesn't discount his back catalogue one bit.
To elucidate on the tone of Naildown's style right off the bat, their take on melodic death is quite upbeat and harmonious, with lots of dirty, crunchy rock-ish riffs linking the chains between the obligatory solo outbursts and dapper synthwork. I have always adored Puikkonen's keyboard textures on this release, as they were what always had me coming back for more, right next to the slingshot acrobatics of the guitars. There is definitely a quasi-industrial, forward thinking slant to his approach, which adds a lot of character. There aren't many keyboard solos, but the one on the title track remains a highlight and underpins the fact that it is probably the most complete cut here. "Eyes Wide Open" is more mid-paced and punishing, but the riffs slay and the progression makes logical, simplistic sense. "Next Infinity" is a good song, and "Fragile Side" really ties together nicely on the refrain.
Really, there isn't too much to complain about here. If you are fond of all of the obvious suspects, Naildown will scratch that itch quite succinctly. Freyberg's extensive use of cleans may bifurcate opinions a bit, but holy hell the leads shine like an atom bomb. The only real complaint I have is "Hollow Syndicate," which opens up sounding glorious as all get out, but never really delivers during the rest of its duration. "Evil Deeds" is sort of shaky as well, so go ahead and skip those two if you are pressed for time. Otherwise, World Domination is pretty killer and an interesting snapshot of the scene birthed immediately after Children of Bodom's initial rise to fame. Most of these bands fell off of the map shortly thereafter, but Naildown is supposedly still kicking, Daniel has all but assured that to me via online discourse. I'll definitely check out whatever they bring to the table next, but I doubt it will top this.