About The Icicle Works


The Icicle Works are an English alternative rock band and were named after the 1960 short story "The Day the Icicle Works Closed" by science fiction author Frederik Pohl. They had a top 20 UK hit with "Love Is a Wonderful Colour" . In the US and Canada, they had only one top 40 hit, the 1984 single "Birds Fly ".


Led by singer/songwriter Ian McNabb, the band released five albums from 1984 to 1990 before breaking up in 1991. McNabb later convened a revised line-up of the band in 2006 to play live shows; this revised Icicle Works line-up still plays sporadic live dates.


The band was founded in Liverpool in 1980 when bassist Chris Layhe answered an advertisement for a musical collaborator placed by 20-year-old Ian McNabb. The two got together and started writing. They quickly added drummer Chris Sharrock , and began playing live shows as "The Icicle Works".


In 1981, the band recorded a six-song independently released cassette entitled Ascending. In 1982, they released the independent single "Nirvana", which made it to No. 15 on the UK Indie Chart. The following year, the Icicle Works were signed to the Beggars Banquet label, who issued the single "Birds Fly " on their subsidiary label Situation Two.


Later that year, The Icicle Works released their biggest UK hit, 1983's "Love Is a Wonderful Colour", which was a Top 15 single. Their 1984 eponymous debut album followed shortly thereafter, reached number 24 on the UK Albums Chart and entered the US top 40. Appearing on the US top 40 singles chart at around the same time was "Whisper to a Scream ", a retitled and slightly remixed version of the band's Situation Two release of 1983.


After the release of their self-titled debut album the Icicle Works struggled to match their initial commercial success. They continued to receive critical acclaim as a live band and secured a loyal fan base both in the UK and abroad. Some have attributed the lack of commercial success to The Icicle Works' change in sound over the years, from an initial 'new wave' feel to a more straight-ahead rock sound inspired by Neil Young, The Doors, and the Ramones, amongst others.


This article uses material from the Wikipedia article "The Icicle Works", which is released under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share-Alike License 3.0.

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