Man of Colours

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Man of Colours
Man Colours.jpg
Studio album by
ReleasedAUS: 21 September 1987 (1987-09-21)
United States: 22 September 1987
RecordedFebruary - May 1987
StudioE.M.I. Studios 301 and Trash Studios, Sydney, Australia and Crescent Studios, Bath, England
GenreRock, new wave
Length44:36 AUS 1987 LP
56:45 AUS 1987 CD
LabelRegular / Chrysalis
ProducerDavid Lord
Icehouse chronology
Measure for Measure
Man of Colours
Great Southern Land
Singles from Man of Colours
  1. "Crazy"
    Released: 8 June 1987
  2. "Electric Blue"
    Released: 31 August 1987
  3. "My Obsession"
    Released: 23 November 1987
  4. "Man of Colours"
    Released: 8 February 1988
  5. "Nothing Too Serious"
    Released: 16 May 1988
Man of Colours
1988 Black-sleeve release (Regular Records)
1988 Black-sleeve release (Regular Records)
Professional ratings
Review scores
Allmusic2/5 stars[1]

Man of Colours is the sixth studio album by Australian rock/synthpop band Icehouse, released locally on 21 September 1987 on Regular Records / Chrysalis Records.[2][3][4]

Cover art[edit]

The cover artwork, designed by Iva Davies and Robert Kretschmer, depicts a human figure holding three different coloured flowers.[5] An alternate Limited Black Sleeve release depicted the cover art on a reversed background from Regular Records in Australia but had the same track listing.

Release and reception[edit]

The album peaked at #1 on the Australian album charts for 11 weeks from 5 October 1987[6] and has sold over 700,000 copies.[4] "Electric Blue" was their only Australian #1 single,[6] the release of the album and its five singles marked the zenith of Icehouse's commercial success, both locally and internationally. Several other songs from the album also charted well.

It was the first Australian album to supply five top 30 hit singles "Crazy" (#4 in July), "Electric Blue" (co-written by Davies and John Oates of US band Hall & Oates)[7] (#1, October), "My Obsession" (#12, December), "Man of Colours" (#28, February 1988) and "Nothing Too Serious" (#29, May 1988).[6] With US chart success for "Crazy", which reached #14 on the Billboard Hot 100 and #10 on its Mainstream Rock chart, and "Electric Blue" (#7 Hot 100, #10 Mainstream), the album Man of Colours reached #43 on the Billboard 200.[8][9]

Man of Colours was lauded in Australia during 1988. The album won two ARIA Awards, 'Album of the Year' and 'Highest Selling Album';[10] the associated song "Electric Blue" won 'Most Performed Australasian Popular Work' at the Australasian Performing Right Association (APRA) Music Awards for its writers Davies and Oates.[11]


Different versions of the album have been released, the initial Australian release by Regular Records (see infobox above right) was as a ten track vinyl LP or as a music cassette or as a twelve track CD with two additional mixes of "Crazy". The US / UK release by Chrysalis Records had a different track order from the Australian LP, and the track lengths for the two big singles ("Crazy" and "Electric Blue") are longer on this version of the album. The 1997 Japanese CD version released by For Life Records had two different tracks added. In 2002, Warner Music Australia re-released Man of Colours, with Davies and Ryan Scott digitally remastering, including five bonus tracks.[5] In Australia, the album was also offered on three limited edition coloured vinyl pressings, which were the colours of the flowers that the human figure on the cover was holding.

Track listing[edit]

Songwriters according to Australasian Performing Right Association (APRA).[12]

Australian Release
1."Crazy" (Iva Davies, Robert Kretschmer, Andy Qunta)3:24
2."Electric Blue" (Davies, John Oates)4:24
3."Nothing Too Serious" (Davies)3:28
4."Man of Colours" (Davies)5:12
5."Heartbreak Kid" (Davies, Kretschmer)5:19
6."Kingdom" (Davies)4:52
7."My Obsession" (Davies)4:09
8."Girl in the Moon" (Davies, Kretschmer)4:01
9."Anybody's War" (Davies)4:05
10."Sunrise" (Davies, Kretschmer)5:45
CD Version Bonus Tracks
11."Crazy (12" Version)"7:21
12."Crazy (Midnight Mix)"4:48
2002 Remaster Bonus Tracks
13."Shakin' the Cage" (Davies, Kretschmer, Qunta, Simon Lloyd)4:00
14."Over My Head" (Davies, Kretschmer, Qunta, Lloyd)3:47
15."Touch the Fire" (Davies)3:46
16."Jimmy Dean" (Davies, Kretschmer)4:00
17."Electric Blue (Extended Mix)"7:34
US/UK Release
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
CD Bonus Tracks
11."Crazy (12" Mix)"7:22
12."Crazy (Midnight Mix)"4:49
Japanese release
2."Electric Blue" 
3."Nothing Too Serious" 
4."Man of Colours" 
5."Heartbreak Kid" 
7."My Obsession" 
8."Girl in the Moon" 
9."Anybody's War" 
1997 Remixes
11."Man of Colours (6 am Mix)" 
12."Shakin' the Cage (D. Lord Mix)" 


Weekly charts[edit]

Year Chart Peak
1987 Australian Chart 1
New Zealand Chart 1
Billboard 200 43
UK Album Chart 49

Year-end charts[edit]

Chart (1987) Peak
Australia (Kent Music Report)[13] 18


Credited to:[5]

Icehouse members

Additional musicians

  • Andy Cichon – bass guitar
  • Stuart Gordon – strings
  • David Lord – additional keyboards
  • Glenn Tommey – guitar, percussion
  • John Oates – backing vocals on "Electric Blue"
  • Shena Power – backing vocals
  • Tommy Dassolo – Triangle
  • Karl Chandler – Tuba

Recording details

  • Producer – David Lord
  • Engineer – David Hemming, David Wright
    • Assistants – Carrie Motzing, Greg Henderson
  • Studio – E.M.I. Studios 301 and Trash Studios, Sydney, Australia and Crescent Studios, Bath, England
  • Mixer – David Lord, assisted by Raine Shine @ Crescent Studios, except:
    • "Crazy", mixed by David Lord, assisted by David Hemming @ E.M.I. Studios 301, Sydney
    • "Man Of Colours" mixed by Iva Davies, assisted by David Hemming @ Albert Studios, Sydney
    • "Electric Blue" and "My Obsession" mixed by Michael Brauer @ Sigma Sound Studios, New York City, United States
  • Mastering: Don Bartley, assisted by David Hemming @ E.M.I. Studios, Sydney
  • Digital remastering (2002) – Iva Davies, Ryan Scott

Art work

  • Artwork – Iva Davies, Robert Kretschmer
  • Art Direction & Layout – Sue Goff
  • Photography – Hugh Stewart


Australian-born classical-crossover soprano, Grace Bawden released a version of "Man of Colours" as her debut single.[14] Her rendition of the track received Davies' blessing and was aired on national television program, Rage on 4 September 2009.[15][16][17]


  1. ^ Allmusic review
  2. ^ McFarlane, Ian (1999). Encyclopedia of Australian Rock and Pop (doc). Allen & Unwin. ISBN 1-86448-768-2. Retrieved 3 July 2008.
  3. ^ Grech, Jason (23 July 2004). "An interview with Iva Davies". Countdown Memories. Archived from the original on 8 November 2007. Retrieved 3 July 2008.
  4. ^ a b "Artist: Icehouse". Warner Music Australia. Archived from the original on 11 June 2008. Retrieved 2008-07-03.
  5. ^ a b c "Man of Colours (import bonus tracks) credits". allmusic guide. Retrieved 5 July 2008.
  6. ^ a b c Kent, David (1993). Australian Chart Book 1970-1992. St Ives, N.S.W.: Australian Chart Book. ISBN 0-646-11917-6. NOTE: Used for Australian Singles and Albums charting from 1970 until ARIA created their own charts in mid-1988.
  7. ^ ""Electric Blue" search result". Australasian Performing Right Association. Retrieved 25 June 2008.[dead link]
  8. ^ "Billboard singles charts". Allmusic. Retrieved 11 June 2008.
  9. ^ "Billboard albums charts". Allmusic. Retrieved 13 June 2008.
  10. ^ "ARIA Awards winners by artist". Australian Recording Industry Association (ARIA). Archived from the original on 27 September 2008. Retrieved 2008-06-13.
  11. ^ "APRA Music Awards – winners 1988". Australasian Performing Right Association (APRA). Archived from the original on 23 July 2008. Retrieved 2008-06-13.
  12. ^ "Australasian Performing Right Association". APRA. Archived from the original on 5 May 2008. Retrieved 2008-07-02. Note: requires user to input song title e.g. CRAZY
  13. ^ Kent, David (1993). Australian Chart Book 1970–1992 (illustrated ed.). St Ives, N.S.W.: Australian Chart Book. p. 438. ISBN 0-646-11917-6.
  14. ^ Man of Colours, Debut Single Missing or empty |title= (help)
  15. ^ ReverbNation Missing or empty |title= (help)
  16. ^ Vlach,Anna,Adelaide Confidential,"Iva shows good grace", 25 August 2009
  17. ^ Rage Playlist Missing or empty |title= (help)