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Stygma 4 - Phobia (CD)

Stygma 4
by Stathis Giannakopoulos at 10 May 2001, 9:08 PM

Who are they? Are they Stigmata who turned to Stigmata 4? Oh , man why do they change names all the time? I hope this is their last one. It's bad for the guys 'cause you know it's not the best thing when you have 3 albums under different names. They are great musicians and above all their music is wonderful. This is their third album and as their press release says this will be their final name. AMEN!

Let's talk about their music now. Well, I have to say that this album made me believe that you can still find GOOD melodic power metal bands out there. Sometimes when I get new power metal CD's I feel really letdown. I mean, almost all the bands out there compete in a 'Who is going to steal better Helloween' race and that's really bad for them and for us - the fans - of course. Among these storms of mediocrity Stygma 4 arise to release a great album which change my life a bit.You can say that they play melodic power metal but they go beyond. They have add some great symphonic arrangements on their music and that makes the whole thing more interesting and complete. They use keyboards really smart. I can say that they remind me a more power metal side of my beloved Savatage. The guys know how to play their instruments - unlike some other bands - and they throw some incredible piece of music to a genre that seems to be really uninspired these days. Amazing riffs, very good drumming and bass along with very good vocals. The singer reminds me a bit of Jon Oliva. I don't mean that he has the same voice with Jon though in some points he sounds a bit like him. The major similarity is the way his sings. I have to mention again that the keyboards add a strange yet incredible feeling on their music.

What I like a lot on this album is the two covers on the 'Jesus Christ Superstar' rock opera. I.N.R.I and Gethsemane. God, Gethsemane is so fuckin' great! If you have heard the original song and then you listen to the one from Stygma 4 you'll feel strange. Stygma 4 made the track way more rock/metal than the original. I LOVE this track. I wish I could hear the whole 'Jesus Christ Superstar' opera by Stygma 4! For me is the highlight of the album along with Isolation and Ricochet. They also have a cover on Iron Maiden's '22 Acacia Avenue'. This track is great too. They have add some keyboards and a personal feeling.

Overall this album is a must for all the good music fans. This is a release which worth's your money. For me it's almost a miracle to see a band with an personal music identity these days. If you get this CD you get 9 tracks ( I.N.R.I is an overture) of great Heavy/melodic power metal music. Nothing more, nothing less. Hands down. This CD ROCKS!

PS I saw a couple of reviews where the writers didn't like the singer's voice. Hell are you deaf? This guy rules!

4 Star Rating

Fool ID
22 Acacia Avenue
Herb Greisberger - Drums
Gunther Maier - All Guitars, keyboard programming
Ali Hilzensauer - 6 string Bass
Richard Krenmaier - All Vocals and melody lines
Record Label: Rising Sun Productions


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