This song was inspired when Eric Woolfson of The Alan Parsons Project toured Imperial Chemical Industries in Billingham, England. He saw a street that was lined with miles of pipes and some machinery, but looked to be devoid of any organic life, including people. By the street was a sign reading "Ammonia Avenue" - this was where they made ammonia. Not only did it inspire this song, but it influenced the entire LP. The song itself is beautiful, with lyrics that are profound and moving, even though they don't make a lot of sense. It's one of those occasions where people love a song without knowing what it's about.
Suggestion credit: Mike - Santa Barbara, CA
Woolfson visited the ICI plant at the invitation of the company's chairman, John Harvey-Jones, who thought Eric might find some inspiration on the unusual campus. Woolfson made sure Harvey-Jones got a gold record in appreciation of his contributions.
Woolfson sang lead on this track and also played the piano and Fairlight synthesizer. Alan Parsons, who wrote the song with Woolfson and produced the track, didn't play on it. The rest of the instrumentation is:
Orchestra, conducted by Andrew Powell Guitars: Ian Bairnson Bass: David Paton Drums, Percussion: Stuart Elliott Backing Vocals: Chris Rainbow