The Ice: Brace for the Obscure (60s rock)! — January 17, 2022

322) The Ice — “Ice Man”

Well, I guess today is the perfect day for this song, the second A-side (’68) by the band from Sussex University. Jo-Ann Greene calls it “a wonderful piece of psychedelia whimsy” in All Music Guide. She goes on to say that:

Some bands are deservedly obscure, some fall from grace into that state, and some just never really had the opportunity to be anything but; Ice fall into that latter category. This late-60s Brit band received a leg-up from the BBC, and even made the occasional TV appearance, but lack of label support brought Ice’s spread to an abrupt halt. . . . [T]he group were also equally adept at vocal-drenched pop, delicate rock ballads delivered in a very English fashion, and more emotive R&B/soul-fired numbers. . . . [Y]ou begin to see their label’s problem, for how do you package a psychedelic pop/rock-R&B-soul band for the mass market, even if the group did boast a superb singer, phenomenally intricate arrangements, and a totally unique musical vision? They couldn’t. Easier to just let them melt away . . . .

“Ice cream children smile as they look at you. Ice man smiles. She’s got you too. Scenes that I’ve been dreaming, haven’t used my eyes to see the end that winter brings. Ice man caught up with me. Ice man comes as the day is dawning, ice man comes as the crystal riding ice man. Ice man comes, ice man comes, ice man.”

Wait, ice man comes, the ice man comes, the ice man cometh — I have an idea for a play here!

Here’s the band performing on the John Peel show:

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