Spellbound - Vol II Iss I
© January 1995
There wasn't a lot of press for Icehouse these past months. After the
tour ended, the flurry of reviews and photo ops died down. With the release
of the final single off of Big Wheel, "Invisible People"
was the last bit of news rich journos could write about concerning Icehouse.
New Zealand's press made some late comments about Big Wheel, with
the last single never materializing there. Rip It Up magazine said,
the album reflects the determined focus and conviction of
the band and the spirit with which it was made."
The Sunday Star Times' Colin Hogg wasn't as kind in his review,
although he called Iva a "leading light," and said he "cut
his career with sharp songs." Mr. Hogg insisted on flogging the dead
Bowie horse and thus was reduced to a breakfast side dish in our estimation.
(Wasn't he a character in "Spinal Tap"?)
The lads were mentioned in Queensland newspapers for taking part in a
benefit for the Spina Bifida Foundation in June. Then, a few months later,
were again involved in a charity event whose main cause was the drought-stricken
farmers of Queensland. Iva's smiling face was spotted in a Melbourne area
newspaper, sharing a drink with some fella named Farnham.
That is about the extent of news, these six months gone, put down in black
and white about Icehouse.
"Invisible People" was the final single of off Big Wheel.
This single evidently proved to be too invisible for radio and it was
unfortunately not given the airplay it deserved.
Icehouse fans were left to ponder the fate of Full Circle and itched
to get their hands on it! Well, fate can take some strange twists as Full
Circle was finally released
in Germany! It was released by a
company called Intercord and those lucky Europeans reading this may find
Full Circle at their local music shop. Meanwhile, the rest of the
world, including Australia, must either get their copies from an import
store or catalogue.
The only two live performances given by Icehouse after the tour ended
were both done in the name of charity. In June, the band was in Brisbane
for Channel 9 and Angry Anderson's concert benefit for the Spina Bifida
Foundation. Icehouse performed "Great Southern Land" and "Miss
Divine." The 10,000 plus crowd responded wonderfully to the boys
by clapping and singing along. However, it was a Gildea who held them
Oliver Gildea, that is! Icehouse had a stand-in
bassist for this show, replacing Stephen Morgan, who was in Europe anticipating
the release of Full Circle
oh, and getting married! Stephen's
stand-in was another Steve - Steve Bull - and he was later found playing
with Vince Stone. Vince had a great drummer, too, but his name escapes
The band performed "Great Southern Land" at the next charity
concert in Melbourne, benefitting Queensland's farmers. The Best For The
Bush Concert raised over $3 million and will hopefully help the farmers
recoup their losses and preserve their livelihood.
Radio and Television
There were no radio appearances to report of these past months. Both charity
concerts were televised and we hope you were able to see the band perform!
The Wild Child Exhibit was well worth seeing and we hope everyone in the
Sydney area was able to. The Icehouse items included were the Man Of
Colours jacket, a cube-shaped paper weight with a miniature version
of Flowers' Icehouse album cover encased in it, and the "Crazy"
picture disc. There was also the wonderful feature of a mixing board where
the participant could take a seat and recreate "Great Southern Land."
Congratulations should go to those involved in setting up this popular
section of the exhibit, including Trackdown Studio's Simon "Puuuuut
the Caaaaat Ouuuuuuuut
The Wild Child Exhibit has closed but Iva was once again asked to donate
Icehouse memorabilia to a travelling Rock 'n' Roll exhibit. The Rock and
Roll Legends exhibition has cases from such artists as Led Zeppelin, the
Rolling Stones, and the Who. Amongst the 27 cases from Australian artists,
you will find one devoted to Icehouse, which will include a black leather
vest that Iva wore during the Flowers days. This exhibition will be touring
Australia and then will take to the road for two years, traveling to Southeast
Asia and Europe. If the exhibition comes to the US, we'll be sure to let
our American subscribers know. Congratulations to Icehouse and Iva on
achieving "Rock 'n' Roll Legend" status!
We are happy to report that Mercedes Lackey has revived the character
of Tannim! Her new book, Chrome Circle, has Tannim once again battling
the magical forces of evil and also has him falling in love! Is it a coincidence
that her book title contains the word "circle" as in Full
Sue Adams in New Zealand has pointed out another book to us. It is called
The Tricksters and was written by Margaret Mahy. What caught Sue's
attention was the following excerpt from the book, found on pages 117-118:
"Harry and Tibby went inside and put the tape of an Australian band
on the tape recorder. It was not a Christmas sound. The band sang about
their own continent, '--living in the summer for a million years.' It
seemed the voice of her own country to Harry. Relieved of the pressure
of other people in the house, she danced first with Tibby and then on
her own, whirling around, spinning like a wild bird with a plaited crest,
caught in a gale of sound. At last, tired out, she stood still, listening
intently, then laughed and took Tibby down to the beach
It seems no matter where we Icehouse fans turn, the influence of the band
is felt! Take for instance Kristin purchasing a little black leather purse
at Paddy's Markets in Sydney. It has a silver metal plate riveted onto
it and the plate bears the word "Perspective." But, a few days
after the purchase, Kristin noticed that there were very tiny words written
around the rim of the plate. They read as follows: "Security Code
Clearance 101874 Code Blue Highest Level Eyes Only." Indeed!
Simon Lloyd is working with Iva on some "technology based projects,"
with the details being classified "Top Secret." He can also
be found on Guy Delandro's album Pool Of Reflections playing sax
on the title track.
Steve Morgan spent the better part of June and July in Europe. He and
his fiancé, Caroline, tied the knot in Lake Como, Italy, and then
toured about for their honeymoon. They saw the sights of Italy, Portugal,
Spain, and enjoyed Paris quite a bit. Amsterdam and London were also part
of the newly wedded couple's agenda.
Upon returning home to the Melbourne area, Steve barely had time to shake
the European dust off before he headed up to Sydney. There he worked for
six weeks as the musical director for "Bad Boy Johnny and the Prophets
of Doom," a show about greed, corruption, and the Catholic Church!
Stephen had fun participating in this show and various members of the
band came to see the production, including Iva and Tonia on opening night.
At the show's conclusion, Stephen returned to Melbourne where he began
writing and playing in a seven piece band. The band plays covers of a
"funk/dance" variety. He continues to teach bass to a few students
and is setting up his own home studio. Stephen and Caroline also held
another wedding for family and friends to attend. As for future little
Morgans, Steve says they are "madly working on it" and will
let nature take its course.
Paul Wheeler did not take too large a break after the Big Wheel tour ended.
He hooked up with Vince Stone and played around Australia with his band
for a while. He then was soon involved with a band made up of Craig Bloxom
(bass) and Mark Cuffe (guitar) of Spy V. Spy. In July, the band traveled
to New York City, where they played gigs at the Mercury Lounge and the
legendary CBGB's Club. The band was well received and has since returned
to Minneapolis, Minnesota, where they have signed a contract with Wet
Green Records, and are cutting their first LP. They are recording at the
studio where Nirvana recorded their In Utero album. The owner of
the studio, Jim Nichols, is also having a hand in producing the album.
The guys call themselves Shock Poets and are managed by Gary Morris, Midnight
Oil's manager. Mr. Morris would like the Shock Poets to be a US based
band and plans are in the making to have them tour the States in the early
part of '95.
Before leaving Australia, Paul also played drums on a track of David Chapman's.
This track will find itself included on an album of ambient music being
put together by Simon Leadley. Fans can also hear Paul on another new
age-styled album by Guy Delandro called Pool Of Reflections. Paul
plays drums and keyboards on just about every song on the album and co-wrote
two of the songs with Guy. The previously mentioned Steve Bull played
bass on the album, as did another former Icehouse bassist, Glenn Krawczyk.
Guy has a new CD coming out, which will feature Paul on the drums. Paul
is still involved with Icehouse and will be involved in Iva's upcoming
Paul Gildea has been working pretty steadily with Debra Byrne. The country
band he and Steve Morgan were involved with has since dissolved but they
had good fun while it lasted. We've heard that Paul's next gig may possibly
be surfing with Iva!
David Chapman is still involved in the big world of advertising but is
in the process of expanding his horizons considerably. He and his partner,
Derek, are building a studio in Crow's Nest, Sydney, and are contending
with carpenters, electricians, and bankers! We wish David and Derek the
best of luck with their new venture! As mentioned in Paul Wheeler's news,
David will have a track on Simon Leadley's upcoming album, which may be
released in early '95. We are looking forward to hearing that!
Iva Davies is currently working with a jazz pianist called
Max Lambert on some covers from the 70s and early 80s. Max used to play
piano for the Sydney Dance Company classes. These covers will become the
score for a new ballet for the Sydney Dance Company and is scheduled to
be performed September 1995 to January 1996. The "story" behind
the ballet has yet to be written. The score will be released as an album,
and there may even be a few EPs of "extra covers." These EPs
could be released as early as May. Iva may also begin work on a new studio
album but those plans are still in the very early stages.
His other main task at hand is cataloging all of the Icehouse archives
and memorabilia he "inherited" from both Rod Willis and Dirty
Pool Managements. Going through all the old Icehouse tour records, posters,
photos, and other such items has been time consuming for Iva, but sorting
through it has been "amazing." Iva has been taking each day
as it comes and follows where his inspiration leads him. If he feels like
working on his ballet score, he does that. If he feels like surfing with
his new board, he does that (and very quickly puts a ding in it!).
Iva also found time to contribute a track to the now-much-anticipated
Simon Leadley album. He may also lay down some oboe tracks for an album
being put together by Rob Hirst, the drummer for Midnight Oil, and Rick
Grossman, bass player with the Hoodoo Gurus. Rob spotted Iva at Trackdown
and asked him to play his oboe for the album he is working on.
Finally, Keith Welsh has been speaking with Iva about doing some producing
work and is "sniffing about" for a band with which Iva could
Brynn had her first birthday on November 1st, and had a lovely party with
all her friends. Another party was held on November 6th for the family.
She is growing by leaps and bounds! She is also displaying signs of her
perhaps "inherited" talents. She loves music and will bop away
in perfect time. Her Grandmother Davies made her a fairy dress for her
birthday and, wearing it at her party, Brynn proceeded to delight everyone
with her ballet moves! There was also an exciting event in the Davies
household the last week of November. Brynn took her very first steps,
much to the delight of her proud parents!
So, although things seem quiet with Iva right now, don't be fooled! We
have so much to look forward to coming out of the Icehouse!
and that's what's happenin'!