Steve Stell and Pat O’Keefe formed Illinois’ Enforsaken in March of 1998. Originally envisioned as a death metal side project, the band nonetheless entered DNS Studio in December, 1998 and recorded a two-song demo. The demo was also included on the Orchestrated Chaos 3 CD sampler released by Stell's Soulside Records. The band was offered a release by America's Immortal Records. The band was suffering from a lack of members and inactivity and the offer was not pursued. Instead, the band was put on ice.
In early 2000 the band recruited two high school mates, Steve Sagala and Joe DeGroot, and began writing again. A short time later Eric Kava was recruited on bass. A number of shows with Dismember, Krisiun and others followed and the band received interest from Matt Bachand of Shadows Fall who having played live with Enforsaken was interested in the band for his Lifeless Records. The band entered Studio One with Chris Djuricic (Oppressor, Gorgasm, etc.) and during December 2000 and January of 2001 recorded and mixed Embraced By Misery. The actual recording time did not exceed three days though. Adorned with a cover by Soilwork's Carlos Del Olmo Holmberg, the album appeared in June, 2001. The band also released the album in Europe via LifeForce (see a pattern?) Records and as a bonus tagged a cover of Carcass' Incarnated Solvent Abuse to the disc. The band also appeared on a LifeForce sampler in 2002 with the track Cloaked In Need.
Enforsaken signed to Olympic Recordings in 2003. An album called The Forever Endeavor was announced for February, and later March, of 2004. Eric Kava left the fold in late 2003. The act recruited bassist Adam Simon.
Crash Music signed a four-album deal with the Chicago death metal band after Century Media axed the group from its roster. The band started working on its Crash Music debut in October, 2005 with producer Chris Djuricic. A release date was set for January or February, 2006. The band was dropped following the album’s release and soon disbanded.
ENFORSAKEN - THE FOREVER ENDEAVOR - OLYMPIC/CENTURY MEDIA
Enforsaken might hail from the USA, but the band draws its influences from Europe. The vocals of Steven Sagala have the same edge as Mille, but occasionally do go deeper and heavier. The band draws some influences from the dual-guitar school of Gothenburg. The band's In Flames and At The Gates influences are rarely implicit.
The guitar harmonies and solos of Joe DeGroot and Steve Stell are both welcome and convincing. The rhythm section, and especially the bass drums, have a strong presence. Enforsaken's music is mostly mid-paced and is accompanied by sporadic backing vocals. The Forever Endeavor is not exactly earth shattering or original, but is above average for a young American band. Were Enforsaken to spice up its music a tad and order a better cover artwork next time, the band would be an even better proposition. - Ali "The Metallian"
ENFORSAKEN - SINNER’S INTUITION - CRASH
Boy, no one told me Illionis-based Enforsaken sounds so close to Carcass circa 1995. The dual-vocals system including the rasps and shrieks, the guitar solos and the rhythm tone all smack of the English cadavers. This is also one tight band, playing together and as an ensemble. Above all, it is the solos that sound inspired by the Carcass duo. Regardless, they are quite good and a big addition to the band’s overall sound. Unfortunately, the band has to be criticized for the gang chants. Clean screaming is fine, but not with underground metal. Do Americans really need to copy each and every trend invented for commercial reasons in Europe? For better or worse, they are here. The album’s closing number, The Course To Oblivion, has some smooth and impressive melodic guitar play that needs to be heard. Then the clean singing takes the band down a notch or too. Regardless, Sinner’s intuition could be a new start for this band. Check it out. - Anna Tergel