Initiation was formed in January of 2000 by Mark and John, who had each penned a number of songs even before the band’s start. Some of these would become part of INITIATION’s repertoire and be shaped and molded to perpetuate a solid sonic vision, including both vocal and instrumental pieces. The band’s demo CD contains three songs: ‘Designer Drugs’, ‘Vultures’ and ‘River Of Hope’. A full length CD is in the works, scheduled tentatively for release in the winter of 2004, to be comprised of some of the 17 songs already written and a few yet to be ‘born’. The band’s overall sound can be described as progressive rock, but also includes some modern day influences. The songs are an intricate balance of guitar, bass, keyboards, percussion and vocals; most also including sonic ‘snippets’ of real world sounds and sound FX that bring an extra-dimensional quality to the listening experience, both as recorded and as part of the live performance.
INITIATION has played various venues in the WNY area including CPG’s (Central Park Grill), The Backstage Pub, Broadway Joe’s, Nietzsche’s, Rock & Roll Heaven, and the festival grounds at the Pier, as well as opening for national recording artists Planet X at the Reservoir. The band is able to perform a full concert show (1 or 2 long sets) consisting of almost all original material, supplemented with a few ‘lost classic’ surprise covers, or a show more geared towards covering progressive bands such as Genesis, Rush, Marillion, Yes and Pink Floyd.
Mark Partyka has released 3 independent recordings of his own prior to the formation of INITIATION under the monikers TIDAL WAVE and DARK MARKUS. Having a great penchant for arranging, recording and playing various instruments, Mark crosses the lines between the depths of darkness and sheer beauty in his compositions.
John Gilbert has played keyboards and synthesizers in the bands AQUA MARIA, THE MOMENT and PLEAIDES (who released a CD in 1998). John likes to entice the listener and take them on a journey of
discovery, joy and fun. Creativity and expression are a great outlet and with INITIATION this process is always a great ride for John.
Jeff Jankowski joined INITIATION as a mainstay after the band’s lineup had fluctuated with a few other drummers. Jeff has played with various bands, most notably MR. WONDERFUL SURPRISE; a ska driven band that performed mostly original material and released a full length CD in 1997. Jeff’s original and fresh approach to drums and percussion
express a desire to make the ‘song’ the most important entity, and makes a perfect fit with the writing in INITIATION.
Recent addition Ric Stave has performed in original, cover and tribute bands around the WNY area since 1986, and is most well known as a founding member of wünderland (1990-2002). Returning to Buffalo after studying arranging, compostion and performance at Berklee College Of Music, Ric has lent his skills on bass, guitar, synthesizers and vocals not only as a ‘hired gun’ to bands in need of a temporary member, but also as a pit orchestra musician for many local theatrical productions. His songwriting and performance abilities bring an additional perspective to the complex musical style of INITIATION.
“Music is well said to be the speech of angels; in fact, nothing among the utterances
allowed to man is felt to be so divine. It brings us near to the infinite.”