From Music-China Wiki
At the end of the Millennium there was some kind of a new wave of chinese extreme metal in Beijing, where the biggest metal scene is presented.
Along with Suffocated, Bloodbath, Ritual Day, Crimson Flagg etc. one of the most important death metal band appeared. In July 1998 Guitarist Zhang Nan alias Mummify and Drummer Zhang Xin started up a thrash metal band named STALE CORPSE.
The first line up also included Vocalist Sun Yu and Wan Tianchi on bass. One month later Zhang Yu was kicked out of the band and Mummify took over the Vocals and changed the Style into deep growling death metal. In September of the same year the band recorded a 3 track Demo incl. "Bleeding", "Dismember" and "Poem Of Death" at Centre Music Studios. Playing some kind of Power Metal with death vocs they gave their virgin live performance in December 1998 in Brothers Bar. May 1991 a new Guitarplayer Han Chao joined the band and turned the rhythem section into more brutal way of death metal.
During the second year, the band's skills of playing encreased alot. With 13 compositions on the back the band recorded a rehearsal tape in September 1999 which title was "The Soundfrom the second layer underground" dedicated to the place of their rehearsal room. In October STALE CORPSE went on a small tour to XuZhou and NanJing exchanging experiences with local bands. Many different gigs followed mostly in Beijing. In the beginning of 2000 the brutal death metal freak Song Yang replaced Wang Tianchi on bass. With that the classic line up of a new rising death metal star was completed.
In April 2000 STALE CORPSE recorded the song "Inscription" for a compilation CD of the SO ROCK Magazine. Short before that they got interviewed bei Channel V (Chn. Music TV) during a rock compitition. With the attention of rock media and various TV shows STATLE CORPSE became a quite wellknown underground act and started giving life shows like mad on every weekend that summer. They almost became THE headliner on most of underground metal gigs in Beijing.
July 2000 they recorded their self produced debut album "Sound of Prison" and published it at the end of the year over So Rock Records nation-wide. This bestial sounding album was also the first death metal album ever released in China. At the release party in December STALE CORPSE also invited Tomahawk, SUFFOCATED, BLOODBATH, RITUAL DAY, PLAYMATE, MULTIELEMENT etc. to performe on stage. Over 300 Visitors came that night. In addition to that, before the offical release of "Sound of Prison", STALE CORPSE also recorded a self produced 6 track EP "Yin-Yang" (chn. title: Xuan Yuan Zhi Lian).
At this point STALE CORPSE has reached the top of Chinas Metal underground. The Band's Chieftain and Producer Mummify found his own underground label called Mn Records. Wishing to catch more attention of the general media they started trying to go further, making their brutal bestial death grind music even more spetacular. A keyboarder Niu Li was invited into the Band adding noisy electro beats to the ultra low tuned music. The whole live performance ended up in an overtuned chaos of musical massacre. Everything was so overdistortioned you won't hear any details of the drumming or the guitars. Mummify developed his own style of death growls in taking the mirophone into his mouth and screams wildly into it to cause an overdriven vocal sound. During the short two years Drummer Zhang Xin encreased his playing skills alot und could establish himself as the first metal drummer doing fast grinding blastbeats. But soon he got tired of it, plus facing some personal problems, he decided to quit. For serveral months they had to performe with drum computer until a new kid named Maomao took over the drum kit. In the whole year of 2001 nothing special happend but always doing small club gigs. Also Guitarist Han Chao lost intrest and left the band.
Around the first half of 2002, a new line up was presented: Mummify on Voc and Guit., Song Yang on Bass, CRIMSON FLAG-Founder Shen Wenchang on 2nd Guit., Niu Li on Keys and Maomao on Drums. But some how the whole thing didn't work out. Mummify's vision was to establish themself in the Rock scene holding the banner of the underground spirit. His experiment to push this underground heros with the promotional concept of mainstream musicians failed because there was simply no intrest for brutal music in the general media circles. It was an intresting idea that could never work at that time. In October, Song Yang, Maomao and Niu Li announced their depart of STALE CORPSE to do their own progressive metal band LAST SUCCESSOR (at least the same self pushing concept of STALE CORPSE seems to work for LAST SUCCESSOR who later became one of the main force of Beijings metal scene). With that Mummify has to set everything more or less on ice and started focusing on his studies in recording technique. He kept away from the metal scene ever since.
The ups and downs of STALE CORPSE was quite a phenomean in the history of chinese underground music. With their efforts they archived to make impossible things possible and opened completely new ways and concepts for upcoming bands in the scene. Maybe the scene of today might be quite different without their archievements. STALE CORSPE is a legend of underground music in China.
Unfortunedly this band couldnt make it until today, Chieftain Mummify call it a day somewhen in 2003 and totally disappeared from the metal scene. The rest of the band kept continue playing together and started up a new band called Last Successor and changed the style into progressive power metal.
Stale Corpse had been interviewed by the Painkiller Heavy Music Magazine for their second issue.
Articles in magazines
The Sound from the second layer underground - Demo - 1999
- Yin Yang (EP) - 2000
So Metal! (VA) - 2004
Appearences in magazines
So Rock! Magazine (no. 4) - 2000, May
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