Bold & Hopeful Spark
M-LAB was conceived in the fall of 2001. After spending five months putting up flyers in search of bandmates who shared his musical vision, keyboardist Derek Gregor finally found what he was looking for in singer Drew Brody and drummer Mike White. Playing in Manhattan's Lower East Side and Greenwich Village clubs, M-LAB began to shape it's distinctive sound around Gregor's lyrical piano hooks, Mike's innovative rhythms, and Brody's powerful and emotive vocals. The three of them formed the nucleus of the band which has now become a New York institution. After a few years of performing in New York, along the East Coast, and throughout the Midwest, M-LAB released it's first full-length CD, From Baser Elements, in the summer of 2004. Collaborating with violinist Skye Steele, the band took an experimental and artistic route, eschewing guitars in favor of acoustic and electric violin. After releasing From Baser Elements, M-LAB parted ways with their original bassist and began incorporating guitars for a more traditional rock instrumentation. The addition of bassist Nate Stevens and guitarist Kevin Hunter balanced out their sound, which maintains a flair of theatricality but is now more grounded and accessible. M-LAB's new CD, a bold and hopeful spark, will be released in March 2010. The CD has been a labor of love for the band and producer Stacy O'Dell. The sound is lush and powerful, with sonic elements reminiscent of new bands like The Fray and The Killers alongside influences of iconic bands like U2 and Queen. The song styles range from the sanguine ('21st Century Aristocrat,' 'The Dancers') to the hopeful and innocent ('Cross the Line,' 'Take Time') to the achingly heartfelt ('My Turn,' 'Counting On My Memory'). Throughout the years, M-LAB has developed a devoted following. They're known for their technical virtuosity and dynamic, explosive performances. They play to packed houses, and their shows have a rare energy and electricity that belongs in an arena. A bold and hopeful spark is a fitting description, not just for the album, but for the band itself.