[The Nicks Fix]

The Dallas Morning News
July 4, 2003

The following is a review of the July 3rd Fleetwood Mac concert in Dallas at the American Airlines Arena.

Review: Fleetwood Mac still infused with energy

By THOR CHRISTENSEN / The Dallas Morning News

The one thing that always set Fleetwood Mac apart in the rock world was its feminine/masculine vocal balance. That duality is still intact today, but on the band’s first tour since Christine McVie retired, the balance is shifting toward testosterone.

Mystic earth mama Stevie Nicks - she of the gauzy shawls and delicate ballads -- remains the best-known member, but it was hard rocking singer-guitarist Lindsey Buckingham who dominated the show Thursday night in front of a near-capacity crowd at American Airlines Center. Repeatedly spanking his guitar and cranking out frantic solos, he seemed intent on reclaiming the group’s roots in 1960s psychedelic blues-rock.

It didn’t always work. His Heavy Metal 101 solo in “I’m So Afraid” (from 1975’s Fleetwood Mac) was mostly noodle and little beef. Yet for the most part, his guitar work was hypnotic, from the Segovia-style finger-picking in “Say Goodbye’’ to the Buddy Holly-on-steroids jangle of “Second Hand News.”

Ms. Nicks’ quavering voice has dropped considerably over the years, but while she can no longer hit all the high notes, her deepened voice added a sense of weight to the philosophic musings of songs like “Dreams” and “Landslide’’: When it came time to sing the line “I’m getting older, too,’’ she simply smiled and tossed up her hands in resignation - which the crowd duly applauded.

She no longer floats across stage like a whirling dervish, but she did manage a seven-rotation twirl in “Stand Back’’ - an impressive move for a 55-year-old in platform boots (and more impressive than the throbbing new wave song itself).

Without Ms. McVie competing for lead vocal time, Ms. Nicks got to sing most of her signature tunes: “Rhiannon,’’ “Gypsy,’’ “Gold Dust Woman,’’ even “Silver Springs.” But the show was no mere nostalgia trip.

Unlike a lot of reunited classic rockers, Fleetwood Mac is touring behind a strong new CD, Say You Will, and some of the concert’s high points arrived in the soaring melodies of new songs like “Peacekeeper” and “What’s the World Coming To.” Another new tune, Mr. Buckingham’s sinister “Come,’’ was every bit as dramatic as old gems like “The Chain.”

Even some of the band’s older tunes sounded fresh, like “Tusk,’’ with its timeless trance groove, and an African-influenced “World Turning,’’ complete with Mick Fleetwood playing the role of human beat box. Compared to fellow ‘70s arena-rockers the Eagles - who played a slick show two weeks ago at the AAC - Fleetwood Mac seems almost edgy these days.

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