The Strand is an Arizona based industrial group. Dave Strand formed the band in 1999. The current band members include Ariana Z Naraghi, Elias Lewter, Laura McQuaig, Scott Levy, Dave Strand, and Steve Laskarides. The Strand’s style varies from industrial dance, EBM, electro-industrial, and industrial rock.
- Founding member David Levy started creating music on his Amiga computer in the early 1990’s in Vernon Hills, Illinois, a suburb of Chicago under the original project name DFMA. His songwriting was heavily influenced by the industrial music coming from the Wax Trax record label in Chicago. Shortly after, he began collaborating with friend Arman Bastani under the band name Ascension Desention. They would write several industrial songs highlighting paranormal phenomenon with topics such as, ufos, alien abduction, spontaneous combustion, ghosts, and the Loch Ness monster. As early as 1992, Dave began producing music as The Strand instead of DFMA, basing the new name off of a philosophy on perspective he had regarding a “Koosh” ball. (See Kooshian Philosophy) In 1999 Dave moved to Arizona and took the stage name, Dave Strand. Shortly after, the Strand was officially created. The Strand’s first members were Dave Strand, Randall Hampton, Kimberly Brown, Steve Laskarides, Neal Parker, Scott Levy, and Jeremy Reich.
- The Strand first burned several two and three song CD demos, which circulated among local industrial music fans. An eight song demo titled “Digging in the Trench” was the first public release, and only sold online in 1999 via MP3.com. In 2000, “In the Trench”, their first official full-length CD was released. Their release party and debut performance took place August 2nd 2000 at the Power Plant in Phoenix, Arizona. The Strand went big with their first live stage performance which included electronic and acoustic drums, keyboards, costumes and video projection. Later that year Randall Hampton left the band amiably to pursue other ventures.
- Between the years 2000-2004, the Strand continued to build their fan base and performed in the southwest US. They supported several renowned touring bands including: VNV Nation, And One, Assemblage 23, Covenant, Dismantled, Imperative Reaction, and the Azoic. Neal Parker, the drummer, left the band in 2003 and was replaced by Bryon Anderson. During this time they gained the sponsorship of Trash City Entertainment. They were then able to release two more CDs in 2004; a remix album featuring the work of esteemed industrial musicians and their second full-length CD titled “Diatom”.
- In 2005 the Strand played the main stage at Convergence 11. In 2007 they were featured on the main stage at the Dark Arts Festival in Salt Lake City. Shortly after, female vocalist, Kimberly left the band to pursue her education.
- In the fall of 2007 the band recruited Laura McQuaig as their new female vocalist. During the female vocalist auditions, keyboardist Jeremy Reich left the Strand. Elias Lewter, former band member of the Marbles and Dubok joined the band as a replacement. Shortly after the Strand’s third full-length CD, “Destroyers of that which is destroyed and rulers of that which is not destroyed” was released. The release featured vocals by Laura McQuaig as well as Kimberly Brown. The band went on their first official multi-state tour in 2008 performing in several Midwest states. In 2008 they performed at the Oscillation Festival held in New Mexico.
- In May of 2012 The Strand released Combat Advantage, their fourth full length album. In late 2012 Bryon Anderson resigned and Elias Lewter stepped into the drumming position. The band continues to play shows, and release music. In July 2014 Mike Marsh (of Hardwire) was announced as the new keyboardist for The Strand to fill Elias Lewter’s vacant keyboard slot since he moved to drum position.
- In October of 2016 Matthew Elias Lewter resigned from The Strand. Following this The Strand announced they were entering a 6 month ‘creative phase’ to work on new material.
- In February of 2018 The Strand announced they were getting back together and booking new shows. During this time Mike Marsh’s keyboard position was replaced by Ariana Z Naraghi.
Current Band Members
- Dave Strand (1992-present) Vocals
- Laura McQuaig (2007-present) Vocals and Keyboards
- Elias Lewter (2007-present) Drums
- Scott Levy (1999-present) Keyboards
- Steve Laskarides (1999-present) Keyboards
- Ariana Z Naraghi (2018-present) Keyboards
Former Band Members
- Mike Marsh (2014-2016) Keyboards
- Bryon Anderson (2003-2012) Drums
- Jeremy Reich (1999-2007) Keyboards
- Kimberly Brown (1999-2007) Vocals and Keyboards
- Neal Parker (1999-2003) Drums
- Randall Hampton (1999-2000) Sound FX
- Esmeralda Villalobos (2007) Vocals
- Seth Ludeman – Keyboards, Guitars, and live assistance for 2006 tour.
- Dean Barbella – Spoken word on song Apparent Disaster
- Sarah Hudson – Vocals on song Deceived