The Icicle Works

LP | Cas | CD

Robert Ian McNabb - voice, guitars & keyboards.
Roy Corkhill - bass.
Paul Burgess - drums.
Mark Revell - voice.
Dave Baldwin - additional keyboards.

Louis Gardin - percussion.
Ged Lynch - additional drums and percussion. 

The final Icicle Works studio album.

Though they're routinely filed under new wave, The Icicle Works, on this, their final album together, appear to owe more to American heartland roots rock and power pop than to the synth-dominated sounds that new wave has routinely been associated with. One listen to the echo-laden guitars on "What She Did to My Mind," a song that could have come off a Neil Young and Crazy Horse album, will tell you that. Permanent Damage is accomplished, if not consistently so. It is also among the more bleak albums by the band; most of the songs are about relationships in various stages of collapse. The first release by The Icicle Works after the move from Beggars Banquet to Epic, it is the only one to feature the short-lived third and final lineup, before singer/guitarist Ian McNabb went off looking for solo success. In the absence of the two Chrises, drummer Sharrock and bassist Layhe, McNabb's singing and writing maintain the connection to The Icicle Works of old. Permanent Damage finds McNabb turning a sharp, often deliciously bitter, eye on heartbreak. He's in fine voice for the most part, imbuing the songs with an achy desolation that suits them down to the ground. The band's playing, though not incendiary, shows that their yen for hooks and singalong choruses remains intact. The first three tracks, "I Still Want You," "Motorcycle Rider," and "Melanie Still Hurts," are fast, fine, poignant, and pop as anything. Somewhere around the halfway mark, though, the quality takes a dip. "One Good Eye" and "Woman on My Mind" are slack-jawed rants, infested by hammy writing that sound as if the Works switched to autopilot after tossing off the good songs. A pity, really, because it renders uneven what could otherwise have been a fine farewell release to remember one of the great lost bands by.  

"The band had gone and this was just me with my mates. The sessions felt a bit like a wake. Shouldn't have been released under the Icicle Works name but Epic gave me loads of money and one has to put food on the table. The tour was a riot. Sold out everywhere but people agreed it wasn't the same anymore. They were right. It was all over bar the shouting." IMc

Picture Sleeve [FRONT] 

[Japan CD] Epic / Sony Records ESCA 5138  

[UK LP] Epic | CBS 466 800 1
[UK Cassette] Epic | CBS 466 800 4
[UK CD] Epic | CBS 466 800 2
[Europe CD] Epic | CBS 466 800 2
[Japan CD] Epic | Sony Records ESCA 5138 


Track Title Composer Time Notes
1 I Still Want You Ian McNabb 3:37 A 1
2 Motorcycle Rider Ian McNabb 3:35 A 2
3 Melanie Still Hurts Ian McNabb 4:13 A 3
4 Hope Street Rag Ian McNabb 3:28 A 4
5 I Think I'm Gonna Be OK Ian McNabb 3:11 A 5
6 Baby Don't Burn Ian McNabb 4:11 A 6
7 What She Did To My Mind Ian McNabb 7:20 B 1
8 One Good Eye Ian McNabb 4:48 B 2
9 Permanent Damage Ian McNabb 3:17 B 3
10 Woman On My Mind Ian McNabb 3:43 B 4
11 Looks Like Rain Ian McNabb 2:12 B 5
12 Dumb Angel Ian McNabb 3:36 B 6


Tracks 1-5 produced by Michael H Brauer. 
Track 6 produced by Richard Manwaring and The Icicle Works.
Tracks 7-12 produced by The Icicle Works.

All tracks mixed by Michael H Brauer except 6 mixed by Richard Manwaring and 9,11 mixed by Mark Pythian. 

Artwork By - Jonny Mendelsson

Recorded at Amazon, Livingstone, Mayfair & Air Studios, London

[UK LP] Epic | CBS 466 800 1
Printed inner sleeve 
LC 0199 
(P) 1990 CBS United Kingdom Ltd.
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