Icewagon Flu | Mr. Norman

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Mr. Norman

by Icewagon Flu

Complete American Rock. Mixing pop,world, alt-country, blues and irish for a melting pot of rock...described as "a new AMERICAN sound."
Genre: Pop: Beatles-pop
Release Date: 

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1. Norm (radio edit)
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3:35 $0.99
2. Trinity
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4:01 $0.99
3. Liza Was Rejected
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3:54 $0.99
4. Shameless Exhibitionist
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4:44 $0.99
5. Norm
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3:38 $0.99
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ABOUT THIS ALBUM


Album Notes
"With so many bands out there trying to find something new and unique for a signature sound, it seems that Icewagon Flu is headed in the right direction...Fans will certainly enjoy their wacky weirdness, satire and irony presented with excellent musicianship. They are a little Frank Zappa and Dr. Demento, Bruce Springteen and The Police, Austin Lounge Lizards and The Irish Rovers, Tom Paxton and Bob Marley. These Hobokenites' off-beat humor and first-rate musicianship will surely crack your pan."
- Joe Ross


Reviews


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Kevin Bligh

Icewagon Flu has produced a musical unique, interesting, and impressive EP
When a band takes the liberty to call an EP that they have produced as being a musical melting pot, you know that you are in for a musical treat. When the image of a melting pot comes to mind, automatically you envision a group of things that might not necessarily belong in the same pot somehow concocting together into a tasty stew. What Icewagon Flu has been able to do is take a wide range of musical sounds, somehow mix them together with the right amount of intricacy and musical spices into an EP that is both musically interesting and unique.

With only five songs gracing the EP album from Icewagon Flu by the name of Mr. Norman , the band has a limited amount of chances to make the EP cohesive and enjoyable to the listener. Fortunately for all of us out there, Icewagon Flu has indeed come up with an EP that is musically complete from track one to track five and has a strange and entrancing effect on the listener that automatically draws the listener into listening to each note, every lyric, and certainly all five tracks.

Norm (Radio Edit) starts off the album nicely and is the most traditional sounding rock song on the album. Although the tempo of the song changes throughout, the song is emphasized by the repetitive guitar sounds time and time again. Of course if you count the two versions of Norm , then the album really only has four tracks. The second version of the track comes at the very tail end of the EP.

Trinity maintains a proud Irish rock and roll sound to the track complete with lyrics about whiskey and war, two of Irelandâ''s most important tenets. The tin whistle chimes in during the chorus of the song and adds to the traditional pub rock feel. A song about unity, the lyrics are absolutely image filled in the sense that the lyrics cry out for being united, "...together like the blessed Trinity." Just when you think the song is over, the bodhran brings you right back into the song and the lyrics and music pick up to forcefully close out the song.

The most musically interesting song on the EP has to be Shameless Exhibitionist . This track starts out with a very Caribbean cruise ship feel. An exotic beat is met with upbeat lyrics and the whistle joins in nicely to give a sort of, well, "melting pot" feel to the song. A barking sound that chimes in with the rest of the music simply shows perhaps two things: how much Icewagon Flu is either (A) deranged or (B) interested in creating music that is completely fluid and not your everyday musical drivel.

Icewagon Flu is comprised of Kevin Adkins (vocals, tin whistle, banjo, harmonica, and kazoo), Martin Bristow (vocals and guitar), Chris Winslow (keyboard), Christopher Speich (percussion), George Smith III (vocals, bodhran, slide whistle) and Josh Winslow (bass and vocals).



Track listing:

1. Norm (Radio Edit)
2. Trinity
3. Liza was rejected
4. Shameless Exhibitionist
5. Norm

The good thing about this EP is that it gives you the perfect amount of a glimpse into what it means to listen to Icewagon Flu. The EP tickles your fancy to either want to hear more from the band or perhaps go back to your mainstream rock and crap. Icewagon Flu has created in their EP Mr. Norman an album that pushes musicâ''s proverbial envelope. They seek to produce music that falls outside of the box, a risk that in their case, paid off quite well. Mr. Norman is a risky album, and Icewagon Flu deserves credit for following through in their production of an album that strives to be different and is awesome all at the same time!

Mr. Norman is produced by Jivin Jones Records.

For more information about Icewagon Flu, check out their website at www.icewagonflu.com.

Shite'n'Onions

yeah it’s top shelf stuff
Icewagon Flu: Mr. Norman EP --
4 tracks (plus a radio edit of the title track) of quirky, roots’n’roll. Think of The Rolling Stones and The Beach Boys crossed with Hothouse Flowers and Revenge of the Nerds. Mitch Easter of REM fame mixes so yeah it’s top shelf stuff.

Mike Farragher - Irish Voice

Cool Tunes from Icewagon Flu
3/9/05
Hoboken’s Icewagon Flu has a new friend they want to introduce you to. Mr. Norman is the name of their new EP CD, and it is a wild ride of free ranging jams that sounds like Phish if they swam in the Hudson. 

“I simply call our music a melting pot,” explains guitarist Gobshite (no one has a real name in this band). 

“We have the same amalgam of musical styles that help build our greatly diverse nation. The songs invoke the great spirits of blues, country, punk, Irish, folk, Caribbean and rock. 

“But we’d be lying if we didn’t mention the nagging pop influences and our emphasis on an energetic live performance. Our hope is to create music that people can instantly relate to and enjoy on multiple levels.”

With a crunchy college rock riff and a mandolin trill, the band is off like a shot, with “Norm,” a song about a lovable loser. “He doesn’t tap any kegs but he does know the square root of 682” they sing. 

On “Liza Was Rejected,” they clang a couple of melodies from “Bang Bang Maxwell”-era Beatles and mix them in with a jazzy percussion and the essence of sixties British smarminess. 

Yes, it is somewhat dizzying to keep track of the tempo changes and varying musical ideas that exist on one song. The producers might want to consider giving the band a Ritalin smoothie before the next recording session to deal with this musical ADD; still, the band is great fun all the same. 

They are rapidly gaining a reputation as a great live act, and you can see for yourself when they share the stage with the Prodigals at the Knitting Factory on Sunday, March 13. 

They will be flying solo at Princeton’s Triumph Brewery (one of my favorite places to get a pint) on March 17, and Siamsa Irish Pub in Stroudsburg, Pennsylvania on the 26th. 

For more information, log onto www.icewagonflu.com.

Hibernian Records

Icewagon Flu - an enterprising lot
After seeing the band live last year,  I would have to report a strong Irish current running through their music, and indeed on this EP you'll hear mandolin, banjo, tin whistle and bodhran used subtly throughout.   However, this is not a 'shove it down your throat' Irish rock band (although they are the people behind New York's popular Irish Rock Festival), but an adventurous young band using a variety of instruments to add texture to their well arranged songs.   Guitar parts, percussion and vocal harmonies give this EP an upbeat pop feel, with a wide spectrum of musical influences.
Title track 'Norm' has a great guitar riff and a Talking Heads quirkiness (though without the love 'em or hate 'em David Byrne vocals).  Having said that, lead singer Kev's vocals have an impressive range and variety on this song.   There's the radio edit and full length version included here.
Although written about American ideals, this is probably the most Irish inspired of the four songs is 'Trinity' which builds throughout the verse in true protest song style to an Irish tune on the chorus with banjo backing and a two note whistle riff.  Vocals on the 'whiskey in the water' chorus have a Shane McGowan sound and there's a bit of Damian Dempsey and Spirit of the West in there too.   'Thousands are Sailing' comes to mind, which has to be a compliment.
'Liza was rejected' is a well developed piece of songwriting and arrangement, which has the feel of Sergeant Pepper era Beatles and Elvis Costello (especially the bass and lead guitar intro).  There's some nice mandolin and - I'm guessing - glockenspiel making this a real catchy track.
Completely different again is 'Shameless exhibitionist' with a Caribbean influence and the kinds of percussion and happy people noises that go with that sound.
Talented band, not what I had expected from them on this EP, but having listened to it something like eleven times by now, it's really turning out to have depth that merits many more appearances on the cd player.
Icewagon Flu
Mr Norman EP
Jivin' Jones Records
£5
www.icewagonflu.com 

Hoboken band Icewagon Flu are an enterprising lot; with their own record label and graphic design company, their own festival and still finding the time to gig and record.   Having sold out of their last album, they've gone right ahead with an EP to fill the gap until the next album.   Also available now at Hibernian Records -- www.hibernianrecords.com

Joe Ross

Original material and witty messages will take them far
Playing Time – 19:52 -- “Mr. Norman” is a 5-track “extended play” CD that the band hopes will be a stepping stone to a full-length release later in 2005. The project started with an introspective look at their large body of new material, then they chose songs representing their current musical direction. Band members go by the names Beast, Slides, Gobshite, Fisheye, Tom and Absolutely. Respectively, they are Martin Bristow (guitar), George L. Smith III (bodhran, vibraphone, Fender Rhoads piano), Kevin Adkins (whistles, banjo), Timmy Murray (mandolin), Christopher Speich (percussion), and Tony Steele (bass). Vocals are handled by Slides and Gobshite.

The band’s entire musical identity draws from a multitude of inspirational sources to incorporate and create sounds representing the melting pot of true “American-style” music. The Hoboken, NJ. band doesn’t constrain itself to any one genre, but they do favor an eccentric, electric, and danceable groove. Their unconventional songs mix rock, Irish, country, R&B, and rap. Idiosyncratic in a sense, “Norm” tells a sad story of a high school “dweeb” who dreams of the future and eventually accomplishes his goals. “Trinity” calls for the various world religions to be “united all together like the blessed Trinity.” “Liza Was Rejected” uncovers a unique love triangle between two female friends who compete over a young man’s attention. “Shameless Exhibitionist” takes a humorous look at seemingly paradoxical tendencies in ourselves and others.

With outstanding instrumentalists and unique songwriters, the Flu’s unique tunes are perfect party music. Their original material and witty messages will take them far.
(Joe Ross, Roseburg, OR.)