GMPLS-based labeled optical burst switching (LOBS) networks are being considered as the next.-generation optical Internet. GMPLS includes wavelength switching next to label and fiber (space) switching. In this article, we present a new concept of optically labeling bursts of packets suitable for LOBS networks supported by the GMPLS protocol. It is based on angle modulation, which enables control information to modulate the phase or frequency of the optical carrier, while payload data are transmitted via intensity modulation (IM). In particular, the optical label is orthogonally modulated, with respect to the payload using either frequency shift keying or differential phase shift keying. We present a performance analysis of the aforementioned modulation schemes by means of simulations where the influence of the payload IM extinction ratio and laser linewidth are investigated. In addition, the transmission performance of an IM/FSK combined modulated signal is experimentally validated at 10 Gb/s, demonstrating at the same time FSK label swapping operation. Finally, a suitable optical label-controlled switch design is proposed that takes advantage of these novel labeling techniques, and efficiently combines widely tunable, fast switching lasers and SOA-MZI wavelength converters with an arrayed waveguide grating router.