[The Nicks Fix]

Boston Herald
Sept 26, 2003

The following is a review of the September 24th Fleetwood Mac concert in Boston at the Fleet Center.

Nicks and Buckingham buoy Fleetwood Mac

By Brett Milano
Friday, September 26, 2003

The older some '70s rock bands get, the more people they need to bring onstage. Like the Eagles and Steely Dan, Fleetwood Mac has turned from a small group to a big production. The classic Mac was a five-piece band, but Wednesday's show found 11 people in the lineup.

Fortunately, two of those people were Lindsey Buckingham and Stevie Nicks. Although the Mac has lost some of its band identity, it's a fair trade to have the two stars back.

Now-retired singer/keyboardist Christine McVie wasn't even missed that much: McVie wrote a number of the band's smoother hits, but Buckingham and Nicks, a long-estranged couple, provided many of the band's best songs and much of its personality.

Though the pair mended their fences years ago, they drew on their stormy romantic history for a few dramatic moments. During ``Silver Springs,'' which Nicks wrote in 1977 about their relationship, she and Buckingham faced each other and shouted out the angry chorus. And they jokingly mimed a fist-fight during "Tusk,'' only to embrace at the song's conclusion.

Running nearly three hours, the show (which was being recorded for DVD) stuck mainly with the big hits - even McVie's ``Don't Stop,'' with Nicks singing her parts. The extra members (including two backup singers from Nicks' solo band) proved mostly unnecessary, especially the two drummers who played behind founder Mick Fleetwood. Nicks has gotten most of her vocal range back after some shaky years, though she still has to avoid the high parts on ``Dreams'' and ``Rhiannon.''

Though Nicks' songs drew the loudest applause, it's guitarist Buckingham who remains the creative leader and loose cannon. Early in the show, he interrupted a string of familiar hits to do a manic ``Eyes of the World.'' His solo acoustic ``Big Love'' sounded more intense than the studio version, heavy breathing and all. And his new tune ``Come'' proved far weirder and noisier than most of the crowd seemed to expect. As long as Buckingham stays in the band, Fleetwood Mac won't be just another oldies act.

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