Home » CONCERT REVIEW: No Rumour, Mac’s back

CONCERT REVIEW: No Rumour, Mac’s back

John McVie and Stevie Nicks walk down memory lane last night at Madison Square Garden. (Charles Wenzelberg/New York Post)
John McVie and Stevie Nicks walk down memory lane last night at Madison Square Garden. (Charles Wenzelberg/New York Post)

Fleetwood Mac
Madison Square Garden
New York City
Monday, April 8, 2013

By Michaelangelo Matos
New York Post
Tuesday, April 9, 2013 5:44 AM

Fleetwood Mac have so many hits that when they don’t just play them in concert, it can seem like they’re doing something new. That’s how it felt on last night at Madison Square Garden, where many of the obvious (and correct) choices like “Go Your Own Way” and “Gypsy” were goosed by a surprising, and gratifying, number of deep cuts.

Singer-tambourine player Stevie Nicks, singer-guitarist Lindsey Buckingham, founding bassist John McVie and drummer Mick Fleetwood — bolstered onstage by two male musicians and two female singers — played well and passionately. Sometimes too passionately — Buckingham’s stop-start version of “Never Going Back Again” was showy.

But even there the band was pushing itself a surprising amount. They could have just played Rumours front to back, stud it with a few other number-ones, and called it a paycheck. Instead, right after the three back-to-back Rumours selections that opened the show (“Second Hand News,” “The Chain,” “Dreams”), they pulled out a new song — titled “Sad Angel” — that Buckingham announced would be on an EP out this week. He also said the band had been working on new material that represented “the best stuff we’ve done in a while,” and “Sad Angel” sounded it — bright and hard like the band’s best-known work.

Later, Nicks began a song by explaining she’d written for an unfinished duo album with Buckingham from 1974. Recently, she’d rediscovered it via, as she put it, “You guessed it, YouTube.” Titled “Without You,” it was gauzy and quite lovely.

They even cleared a four-song mini-set, during the second half-hour, of songs from 1979’s Tusk, a legendary “difficult” album that nevertheless is full of goodies. Nicks was fearsome on that album’s “Sisters on the Moon,” throttling her mike stand. Buckingham didn’t lay back, either; he tore into “The Chain” like he’d written it the day before.

Did Fleetwood Mac invent the pop present? Not musically, necessarily — though their comfy-yet-tough ’70s classics are all touchstones for many young musicians. It’s more that the inner conflicts driving both the band — which featured two couples (departed keyboardist Christine McVie was John’s wife) and plenty of affairs — and its music, where we could all hear about their real-life travails, is the model for the social-media pop present. Watching them up there acknowledging their mutual pasts — smartly and with feeling — could make you hope that their maturity will be a model for today’s kids as well.

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