Even though I don’t remember much about it now as it’s been so long since I’ve heard it, I recall Naildown’s debut album World Domination to be a relatively enjoyable and even somewhat original affair for melodeath – the same can’t be said about their follow up Dreamcrusher though.

First off, the whole album is marred by some, for lack of a better term, shitty clean vocals that sound as if they belong on some sort of alt rock or pop/punk album. There are all these elements seeped into the sound that makes you think the only thing on their agenda is radio play – extremely catchy pop like hooks at every turn, and a general lack of that “hey, this is fucking metal” feeling throughout the majority of the disc. Hell, the verse riff of the opening self-titled track sounds like it belongs on a nu-metal album. Then there’s the keys and electronic elements that remind of some of the stuff MyGrain did on their debut album Orbit Dance, but where as MyGrain did them really well and created some excellent catchy melodic death metal, Naildown fails miserably in retaining the metal aspect most of the time. As if the bunk material wasn’t enough, Dreamcrusher fails again in its muddy production, sounding like all the levels were cranked way to high to where it ends up with that fuzzy, cut-off or muddy sound.

It’s not all completely bad though – it’s painfully obvious that these guys have the skill to create something good, as evidenced by the incredible solo work. At times those solos carry with them a metallic rock n roll like swagger that reminds not in sound, but in vibe of players such Zakk Wylde or Slash. “P.I.B” is the one somewhat bright spot on the album outside of the solos – once fully underway, it introduces a melody driven thrash riff and even some blast beats, but then is ruined by those clean vocals I spoke of prior.

Naildown possess the talent to do something really worthwhile, but Dreamcrusher certainly is not it – I’ll wait to see what they do next.

[Visit the band's website]
Written by Larry "Staylow" Owens
April 3rd, 2008


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