Garten der Unbewusstheit (Nostalgia Blackrain)
by Phil Freeman
Corrupted are a fascinating, mysterious band. They never grant interviews or allow themselves to be photographed in an official “promo photo” capacity, though they perform live and photos and video of their shows can be found online. They’re Japanese, yet for the majority of their career, their album titles and lyrics were entirely in Spanish, with early EPs using images of graphic violence clipped from Mexican tabloids as cover art. Only in recent years have they begun to give songs titles in Japanese, and this, their latest CD and seemingly the beginning of a new phase for the group due to membership turnover, bears a German title which translates to “garden of unconsciousness.”
Corrupted’s style has evolved greatly over time. Their earliest releases were sludgy, primitively recorded doom metal; their debut release, the four-track Anciano EP from 1995, sounded very much in the spirit of Eyehategod and similar acts, churning out Black Sabbath-esque guitar riffs at half speed as the drummer and bandleader, Chew (formerly of Boredoms), crashed his cymbals relentlessly and occasionally set up a slow, thunderous beat. But even on the follow-up, El Dios Queja, recorded the same year, the band’s sound was already evolving. The EP’s third and final track, “Sisto,” was nearly 15 minutes long, prefiguring ever more epic works to come.