Italian black metallers Stigmhate have been doing the rounds since 1998, but with seemingly little very impact made. Their Myspace bio (yes I did have to check their Myspace for research purposes) suggests over the years their line-up has not been the most stable with members leaving left, right and centre, with original member Mike continuing the band alone after inner turmoil in 2004 before fellow founding member Cagliostro rejoined the fold in 2006, before leaving once again in 2010. Yeah, pretty confusing, and that doesn’t cover all the changes whatsoever. Otherwise some line-up stability has been found in recent years, and are about to release their third full length, ‘The Sun Collapse’.
Their history may be pretty confusing, but their music on this album on the other hand is pretty easy and self explanatory. Stigmhate specialise in pretty standard, non-groundbreaking, black metal. In fact on one listen you can instantly tell that the classic Norwegian black metal legends are the main influence here as this sounds near enough identical to them. A huge Immortal influence is picked up upon within seconds of opening track “Throne Of The Eternal Flame”; blast-beats, piercing vocals and fast paced riffs are a plenty.So much so that there is no sign of the band’s own personality present whatsoever. This could easily be mistaken for plenty of other black metal bands sadly, with no unique character traits of their own. It even seems like they aren’t even trying to do or add anything new whatsoever.
Despite its generic nature however, ‘The Sun Collapse’ is a fairly decent listen, for a casual no real thrills but a fun listen. The songs are pretty linear and formulaic; pretty fast paced throughout but very similar to one another throughout, but it’s still an enjoyable listen, especially for someone not too familiar with the genre and starting out. Sadly there is very little of real interest here to mention otherwise. All the songs sound very similar to one another, and even to many of the genuinely legendary black metal acts. For the uninitiated to the genre this wouldn’t be the worst listen ever, but it’s certainly far from essential.