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He is best known for his work with Siouxsie and the Banshees from 1987 until 1995. He was featured on their 1987 album Through the Looking Glass and afterwards recorded three full studio albums: Peepshow, Superstition and The Rapture. His biggest hit with the band was in 1991 with the single "Kiss Them For Me" which reached Number 23 in the Billboard Hot 100. With Siouxsie and the Banshees he also contributed to the films Batman Returns and Showgirls.
McCarrick is also widely known for being part of 4AD records super group This Mortal Coil with whom he recorded three albums – It'll End in Tears, Filigree and Shadow, and Blood. Alongside his work with This Mortal Coil he contributed to the recording and live performances of a number of 4AD acts including Dead Can Dance, The Wolfgang Press, Peter Murphy, Heidi Berry, Lush, Throwing Muses and Kristin Hersh. He was later a member of rock band Therapy?: he joined them in 1996 (his first gig as a full-time member being a secret fan-club show in Dublin, Ireland on 10 April 1996), having previously supplied guest cello work on their albums Troublegum and Infernal Love, as well as various live appearances with the band since 1992. During the bands UK tour in 2003, McCarrick perforated his ear-drum and had to leave mid-tour. His last show with Therapy? was in Glasgow, Scotland on 28 November 2003. McCarrick left Therapy? in March 2004.
He has also had a long association with other musicians, recording and performing with This Mortal Coil, Marc Almond, including Almond's seminal work with Marc & the Mambas, Nick Cave, The The, Gary Numan, Biffy Clyro, Marianne Faithful and Bryan Ferry. Plus, he has become the cellist of choice for British rock bands, appearing on stage with both 3 Colours Red and Rico (to whose Violent Silences album he contributed).
He has worked on and had music used for film, TV, radio and theatre. Film work includes The Garden (Derek Jarman), Batman Returns (Tim Burton), The Craft (Andrew Flemming), and La Proi (Eric Vallete).
He and his wife, Kimberlee, a violinist, now work together as The McCarricks – a live audio visual performance based show. They have toured extensively in the UK, USA and Europe and have written music for Channel 4, Embarrassing Bodies and the Animal Rights Society of the USA.
In 2006 McCarrick (along with Kimberlee McCarrick) took part in Patti Smith's Meltdown festival at The Royal Festival Hall in London where they performed with Sinead O'Connor, Marianne Faithful and Kristin Hersh.
2007-8 saw violin and cello duo The McCarricks tour the UK, Europe and USA. Two E.P releases followed – '3' and 'The McCarricks', both on The McCarricks' own 'House of McCarrick' label.
In 2012, he was working (for the first time in almost 30 years) again with Marc Almond, for his performance of Almond's seminal Torment & Toreros album from 1983 in its entirety, for the Meltdown 2012 festival. He was musical director for the string and choir sections and performed as well. He continues to work with Marc Almond and in 2013 teamed up with Marc and the legendary Tony Visconti to record new material.
Aside from being a live and recording artist Martin is also a teacher and visiting lecturer in music.
- The Glove – Blue Sunshine (1983)
- Marc & the Mambas – Torment & Toreros
- Marc Almond – Vermin in Ermine (1984)
- This Mortal Coil – It'll End in Tears (1984)
- Siouxsie and the Banshees – The Thorn (EP) (1984)
- Bryan Ferry – Boys and Girls (1985)
- Marc Almond – Stories of Johnny (1985)
- Dead Can Dance – Spleen and Ideal (1985)
- The Wolfgang Press – Standing Up Straight (1986)
- This Mortal Coil – Filigree & Shadow (1986)
- Marc Almond – Mother Fist and Her Five Daughters (1987)
- Siouxsie and the Banshees – Through the Looking Glass (1987)
- Siouxsie and the Banshees – Peepshow (1988)
- The Creatures – Boomerang (1989)
- This Mortal Coil – Blood (1991)
- Siouxsie and the Banshees – Superstition (1991)
- Heidi Berry – Love (1991)
- Lush – Split (1994)
- Kristin Hersh – Strings (1994)
- Therapy? – Troublegum (1994)
- Therapy? – Infernal Love (1995)
- Siouxsie and the Banshees – The Rapture (1995)
- Throwing Muses – Limbo (1996)
- Skunk Anansie – Stoosh (1996)
- Therapy? – Semi-Detached (1998)
- Therapy? – Suicide Pact - You First (1999)
- Therapy? – So Much For the Ten Year Plan (2000)
- Therapy? – Shameless (2001)
- Therapy? – High Anxiety (2003)
- Oceansize – Effloresce (2003)
- Biffy Clyro – The Vertigo of Bliss (2003)
- Rico – Violent Silences (2004)
- Siouxsie – Dreamshow (2005)
- Gary Numan – Jagged (2006)
- Kristin Hersh – Learn to Sing Like a Star (2007)
- Therapy? – Music Through A Cheap Transistor (2007)