May 22, 2015

20,000 Vinyl LPs 41: Icehouse ~ Man of Colours


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I started the Vinyl LPs series because I have a collection of over 20,000 vinyl LP albums I am selling; each blog entry is about an album from my collection. Inquire for information here.   

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Today is the birthday of Iva Davies. In case you don't know who Iva Davies is, he formed the Australian rock group, Icehouse. The group performed new wave and synthpop music and attained Top 10 single chart success in both Europe and the U.S.  He is a singer-songwriter, record producer, and plays guitar, bass, keyboards and oboe. He utilizes additional musicians as required for each album. 

For the album, Man of Colours, Davies (vocals, guitars, keyboards, Fairlight CMI, Cor Anglais) was joined by Robert Kretschmer (guitars), Andy Qunta (keyboards, piano), Simon Lloyd (reeds, brass, keyboards, programming), Stephen Morgan (bass guitar) and Paul Wheeler (drums, percussion) in recording the album from February 1987. The cover artwork was designed by Davies and Kretschmer.   


art work by
 

The name Icehouse, which was adopted in 1981, comes from an old, cold flat Davies lived in and the strange building across the road populated by itinerant people.

Of the many albums Davies produced (discography below), my favorite is, Man of Colours (1987); and, of course, I had a favorite song from it which was the title song, Man of Colours. The minor key melody is exquisite! The peaceful, dreamy song with its determined but moderately slow beat and the soulful oboe played throughout is beautiful.

My second favorite cut is Sunrise which starts with a very quiet and unassuming intro that bursts into a dynamic song with layered synths and great drama punctuated by intervals of quiet; it is stunning, startling at times and brilliant.  

My next favorite is the pop hit, Electric Blue. The tune was co-written by Davies and John Oates of the U.S. band Hall & Oates. There is nothing deep or significant about the lyrics but it is a good tune with a great melody that you can dance to, fast or slowly. The song is a throw-back to the synth/pop, new wave, dance music of the early '80's. In it, Lloyd plays a smooth sax (like Marilyn, I have a soft spot for the sax). The song reached number one on the Australian singles chart on 16 November 1987, #7 on the American Billboard Hot 100 singles chart on 21 May 1988, #10 on the Canadian Singles Chart and #53 on the UK singles charts. 



photographer unknown





Icehouse has produced eight Top Ten albums and twenty Top Forty singles in Australia, multiple top ten hits in Europe and North America and album sales of over 28 times Platinum in Australasia. As of 2006, Man of Colours was still the highest selling album in Australia by an Australian band.

Icehouse was inducted into the Australian Recording Industry Association (ARIA) Hall of Fame on 16 August 2006.



Song list: 
  1. "Crazy" (4:48)
  2. "Electric Blue" (4:38)
  3. "My Obsession" (4:07)
  4. "Man Of Colours" (5:09)
  5. "Heartbreak Kid" (5:18)
  6. "The Kingdom" (4:51)
  7. "Nothing Too Serious" (3:25)
  8. "Girl In The Moon" (4:00)
  9. "Anybody's War" (4:05)
  10. "Sunrise" (5:44)



Net links:     
    
Man of Colours on YouTube  
   
Electric Blue on YouTube
  
Icehouse Discography
  
The Icehouse Story   
    


 Happy birthday, Iva!



Styrous® ~ Friday, May 22, 2015

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