HI! HOW ARE YOU? WHERE ARE YOU? Everything is good over here. Our new album was just released 2 weeks ago. Plans are being worked out now for shows and fests. „THE FOREVER ENDEAVOR“ IS OUT AND VERY IMPRESSIVE. ARE YOU CONTENT WITH EVERYTHING? HOW ARE YOUR FEELINGS NOW AFTER WORK IS DONE? We’re satisfied with the way it turned out now. If we could start over, then we would try a few things differently. But, next time we will have more time and the experience to make more improvements. I think the next album can be even better! AS YOU ARE A QUITE UNKNOWN BAND IN THE GERMAN METAL SCENE COULD YOU PLEASE INTRODUCE YOURSELF TO OUR READERS?! Well, we’re a band from Chicago. We play melodic thrash. Also, you can find samples of our music on our website. Please visit www.enforsaken.com or the Century Media site in Germany. AND HOW DID YOUR COLLABORATION WITH CENTURY MEDIA START? DOES THIS MEAN A NEW LEVEL OF PROMOTION FOR YOU? ESPECIALLY AFTER YOUR PROBLEMS WITH WW3 We got in touch with labels after we got out of the WW3 contract. It so happened that Century Media got in touch with us after hearing our first album „Embraced By Misery“. The promotion for the album has been good, they’ve been supporting the album 100%. This is the first time we’ve had real promotion in the metal underground. This kind of exposure is new to us. THE COVER IS VERY INTERESTING AND A LITTLE BIT DUALISTIC… WHICH IS THE MESSAGE? IS IT RELATED WITH THE TEXT CONCEPT AND DID YOU HAVE ANY INFLUENCE ON THE DESIGN? I look at the cover in a similar way. The cover was done entirely by Niklas Sundin. We didn’t have any influence on the art. We ended up picking out one from his gallery that we liked. He then altered the original one to fit the cover better. So, the one you see now is much different in color and detail than the original. IF YOU TURN THE COVER 90 DEGREES RIGHT THE PORTRAYED PERSON SEEMS TO SMILE. PURE COINCIDENCE OR WAS THIS DONE ON PURPOSE? I think it could be a coincidence. I noticed that too. It looks more like a grin, in a somber way. Niklas hasn’t explained what the art symbolizes. I’d like to hear his thoughts on it one day. To me, it looks like an ancient Greek statue that is decaying. WHICH LYRICAL CONCEPT LAYS BEHIND „THE FOREVER ENDEAVOR“? WHAT DOES THE TITLE STAND FOR ANYWAY? Steven Sagala wrote most of the lyrics. They mostly reflect the destrucitve nature of life. „The Forever Endeavor“ is a theme that speaks of never ending conflict, like war and religion for example. Some things that have no resolution. He probably would be able to answer this much better than me! COULD YOU TELL US SOMETHING ABOUT THE PRODUCTION PROCESS? DOES THE SOUND FIT YOUR EXPECTATIONS? HOW WAS WORK WITH JAMES MURPHY LIKE? James Murphy is the man! He went above and beyond the call of duty. He did such a great job with the mastering. If you could hear the unmastered copy to the mastered, you would know what I mean. He bought new software just to make some minor improvements to the mastering. He mastered the album 3 different times just to get it the very best results we could. Most people would’ve done it once and probably would’ve written it off afterwards.. This isn’t to detract from the incredible engineering job Chris Djuric did on the album, too. It‘s rare to see such dedication. We were just lucky enough to find 2 people that really know there stuff. IN MY OPINION YOUR SOUND IS BRUTAL BUT SOMEHOW OPTIMISTIC. DO YOU SHARE THIS IMPRESSION? AN EVIL IMAGE SEEMS TO BE NON IMPORTANT FOR YOU… Yes, some of the songs can come across as sounding more upbeat musically, like the Acting Parts. On the other hand, some of the songs have a darker sound to me. Not so much in an evil way, but in a more sinister way, like Dead Night, Dead Light or Redemption. Some people have mentioned that this album comes across sounding dark. As the lyrics aren’t very optimistic. YOU DON‘T ALWAYS USE THE „USUAL“ POWERCHORDS, MAKING YOUR SOUND SOMETIMES A LITTLE BIT FRAGILE, WAS THIS YOUR INTENTION? I like to use different sounding chords. Sometimes just to give the music a certain mood or to build up some tension. It depends on the sound we’re shooting for. I like to throw in more unusual sounding parts in a song just to make more interesting or exotic. STEVEN ALSO USES SOME CLEAN VOCAL STYLE WHICH SOUNDS WELL BUT A LITTLE BIT INSECURE. IS HE MORE SELF-CONFIDENT NOW? Yeah, I think so. He keeps working at it and it keeps improving! We’re all very satisfied with how the clean vocals turned out. We did not know what to expect before the album. In my opinion, he has a more gritty clean voice, rather then a pure clean metal voice like Warrell Dane (Nevermore) or someone of that style. We think it fits our music real well and most likely continue in a similar direction. WOULD YOU SHARE MY OPINION THAT AMERICAN METAL IS RISING HIGH AGAIN, TAKING SOME EUROPEAN INFLUENCES AND MIXING IT WITH AMERICAN ATTITUDE? WHATS THE REASON FOR THIS DEVELOPMENT? As far as the european influence, I think the majority of the bands that adopt the European styles are our hardcore bands. To be honest, I don’t like the hardcore/ metal mix. I think a lot of those bands that were hardcore, used not to care for metal. Then it seemed there was a re-discovery of albums like „Slaughter of the Soul“, „Heartwork“, „Colony“…then there was this sudden surge of so many hardcore using melodic riffs with hardcore breakdowns and vocals. So that is how the whole „crossover“ started. Most of the bands from here that seem to be rising up in popularity have more of an American thrash influence to them. Bands like Lamb of God, Shadow’s Fall, and God Forbid are making some waves throughout the metal world. We can’t forget legendary bands like Testament, Exodus, and Nevermore! There are still a lot of great underground American bands like Vital Remains, The Chasm, Insurrection, Veneficum, Fleshgrind, All That Remains, Agalloch, Caphararnaum, Summer Dying… I would say we have a lot of diversity here. YOU WILL BE ON TOUR WITH „LEGEND“ EXODUS, ARE YOU SOMEHOW EXCITED OR PROUD OF THIS FACT? Actually, we have one show with them in Chicago. Its real exciting to get a chance to perform with them. I can’t wait to see them live! It‘s cool to see some of the legendary thrash bands start doing shows and putting out albums again, like Exodus, Testament, Nuclear Assault, Death Angel… AND IN MINNESOTA SATYRICON WILL BE PLAYING, DO YOU LIKE NORDIC EUROPEAN BLACK METAL? Yes, I’m a big fan! „Nemesis Divina“ by Satyricon is one of the best. I have most of the albums from bands like Dark Throne, Enslaved, Mayhem, Dimmu Borgir and listen to them often. WHEN WILL WE SEE YOU LIVE IN GERMANY AND WHAT CAN WE EXPECT? If this albums is successful enough, then a German tour will likely happen. It’s too early to tell at this point. At this time, the album has only been out in Germany for week. We eagerly await everyone’s reaction to it! WHAT DO YOU THINK ABOUT THE BUSH/ KERRY CAMPAIGN? WHO WILL WIN AND WHO SHOULD WIN (WHICH COULD BE THE SAME) I would probably lean towards Bush. I’m not overly impressed with either of them. WHAT ARE YOUR OTHER INTERESTS BESIDES MUSIC? I play some soccer when I have the chance. Drinking beer and hanging out with friends. Other than that, I’m constantly involved with music. ANY LAST WORDS? Well, if you get a chance, check out our music at our website. If you like what you hear, then the rest of the album should not disappoint you! THANK YOU VERY MUCH FOR SHARING YOUR TIME AND GOOD LUCK WITH YOUR STRONG EFFORT. Thanks for the interview, Karsten!