Icicle Workswas an English rock band which was formed in Liverpool, England, by Ian McNabb who was a singer, song writer, guitar player, keyboard player, and lead frontman. In 1980 he was joined by Chris Sharrock (drum player), and also Chris Layhe (bass player). They named their band Icicle Works and by the end of 1981 they had recorded and released a six song cassette. In 1982 they released a single called, Nirvana. The next year they signed up under the Beggars Banquet label and released the single, Birds Fly Whisper To A Scream, on the subsidiary label, Situation Two. Also in 1983 they released their biggest hit of all, Love Is A Wonderful Colour. This hit reached the Top 15 U. K. Singles chart. Their debut album they released in 1984, followed not long after that and it reached number 24 on the U. K. Chart, and also reached the Top 40 in the U. S.. Birds Fly Whisper To A Scream reached the Top 40s singles chart in the U. S. And the Top 20 in Canada at about the same time the album hit the charts. After 1984 the band could not release consistent single hits or album hits. It was believed that the reason for this was partly due to the change in music style about that time.
Starting in 1986 Dave green became an auxiliary member of the Icicle Works and played at live shows and also contributed to recordings made by the group although the band was still officially a trio. In 1986 the band released their first Top 75 charted hit in 2 years. The hit was called, Understanding Jane, and it reached number 52 on the charts. It was followed by the single, Who Do You Want For Your Love, which peaked at number 54. In January, 1987, Evangeline, reached number 53. These three songs as well as others were on their album, If You Want To Defeat Your Enemy Sing His Song, released in 1987. The album reached number 28 on the U. K. Charts and it was also released in Britain and North America but failed to chart there. Their single called, High Time, reached number 76 on the British charts but in 1988 it hit number 13 on the U. S. Modern Rock Chart.
McNabb began a solo career after the band split after their album, Permanent damage failed to chart. There had been tension among the group previously and most of the members quit so McNabb had replaced them with new members to record the album. McNabb’s solo career began in 1991. In 2006 he reactivated The Icicle Works name for a series of 6 U. K. Concerts in October, 2006. McNabb stated that the concert tour received more people than their previous Icicle Works tours in the past with the old lineup. They are also planning a tour in 2007. The band has released a total of 24 singles and 8 albums and compilations during their career.
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