Wednesday, October 01, 2014

REVIEWS | VIDEO: Fleetwood Mac Live in Minneapolis

Fleetwood Mac Live
Minneapolis, MN
September 30, 2014

Fleetwood Mac Kicks Off New Tour, with Christine McVie Back on Keyboards
Photo: Jerry Holt - View Gallery

Fleetwood Mac was at the Target Center in Minneapolis Tuesday night, kicking off their latest tour -- the first with longtime singer/keyboardist Christine McVie since 1998.

According to, drummer Mick Fleetwood noted McVie’s return by telling the 17,000 fans in attendance, “Our songbird is back,” a reference not only to the 71-year-old singer-songwriter, but also to "Songbird," one of her contributions to Fleetwood Mac's celebrated 1977 album, Rumours. Fittingly, the band ended the night's show with the song.

The nearly two-and-a-half-hour performance opened with “The Chain,” followed by “You Make Loving Fun.”

Christine McVie celebrated her return by thanking the band and the fans, saying, “It’s a dream come true, a chance you don’t often get in life.”

Fleetwood, Stevie Nicks and Lindsay Buckingham all took time out to praise McVie. Buckingham told the crowd, “This is a band that continues to evolve through good times and adversity.  This is just, I guess, the latest chapter.”

Buckingham continued, “It’s a beautiful, profound, poetic new chapter now that this lady is back with us. And it’s a chapter that is going to go on for a while. A chapter that is going to yield much fruit. We are very, very excited.”

The band’s next concert is Thursday night at the United Center in Chicago.

Fleetwood Mac's On with the Show tour runs through a December 20 concert in Tampa, Florida.

ABC News

The full Fleetwood Mac is back with McVie
by: Jon Bream
Star Tribune

REVIEW: This heyday incarnation — reassembled after some rocky years — came across as a democratic, respectful, polite and mostly sparks-free.

You look for those little moments at a Fleetwood Mac concert.

Like when Christine McVie, back in the fold after a 16-year retirement, cracks a smile as the sellout crowd gives her a huge ovation after she sings her first line of the night. Or when Stevie Nicks and her ex, Lindsey Buckingham, exchange a glance, grasp one another’s hand and even share a hug. Or when McVie slaps her ex, John McVie, on the shoulder in a fond way.

Because Fleetwood Mac is rock’s famously fractured fivesome, you looked for those little signs Tuesday at Target Center, where the Rock Hall of Fame band launched its reunion tour with McVie.

Nicks hasn’t sounded this good since the early ’90s. Buckingham didn’t hog the spotlight as he did last year in St. Paul. McVie held her own, though her voice clearly doesn’t have arena oomph. And the band sounded terrific, as always. What a rhythm machine and what an articulate and emotional guitarist Buckingham is.

But, ultimately, this heyday incarnation — reassembled after some rocky years — came across as a democratic, respectful, polite and mostly sparks-free Fleetwood Mac. There weren’t any opening-night glitches. And the performance was never really tentative. But it was never really lived in. You’d love to see this band at least 10 shows into this 40-concert On With the Show Tour, especially because Tuesday’s opener was so encouraging.

The key thing that seemed to be missing was palpable camaraderie. Each lead singer stayed in his or her own space each time they sang. There were no sparks or even darts between Buckingham and Nicks, whose romantic tension has fueled Fleetwood Mac to superstardom since they joined the long-lived British/American band in 1975. To be sure, there were a couple of times on Tuesday when they turned toward one another — though they stood a good 20 feet apart — and sang pivotal lyrics as if they meant them. She was shooting lasers at him during “Silver Springs” as she proclaimed, “I know I could have loved you but you would not let me.”

Maybe a more telling moment about their relationship and this night came during “Landslide,” which is essentially a duet for them. Buckingham crept closer to Nicks than usual and when she hit the high note on “snow,” she rolled her eyes in disbelief that she could actually reach that note. He broke into a smile and suddenly there was an exchange of genuine emotion between them — even if their grasping of hands at the end seemed as much about showbiz as deep fondness.

The principal emotion during the nearly 2 ½-hour performance was the joy of having keyboardist McVie back in this group of graying veterans (who range in age from 65 to 71). She brought high harmonies and several songs, including “Little Lies,” “You Make Loving Fun” and the closing “Songbird,” back into the repertoire.

When drummer Mick Fleetwood introduced the band members, McVie received the night’s loudest and longest ovation. And Nicks, Buckingham and Fleetwood told the 17,000 fans how elated they were to have her back.

Nicks, who looked encouragingly at McVie all night, admitted she would have bet all her money that McVie would never return. Buckingham talked about this being the beginning of a new chapter with much new material to be written. Fleetwood declared: “Fer sure, the Mac is back.”

But only time will tell if this On with The Show Tour is a full-blown reunion, merely a victory lap or just a sense of closure for a oft-broken band before it retires.

Full review and photos

Review: Reunited Fleetwood Mac a whole lot of fun at Target Center
by Ross Raihala

Fleetwood Mac's sold-out show Tuesday at the Target Center proved one thing that everyone already knew: There has been a Christine McVie-size hole in the band for the past 16 years. Not anymore, though, as Tuesday's concert kicked off the first Mac tour to feature the entire "Rumours"-era lineup since 1998. Now 71, McVie has emerged from retirement looking and sounding like she hasn't aged a day.

Drummer Mick Fleetwood said it best, with 17,000 fans cheering him on: "Our songbird is back!"

McVie's return to the fold not only allowed the group to reintroduce "You Make Loving Fun," "Everywhere" and "Little Lies" back into the set, her presence brought fresh energy and excitement to the entire proceedings. The band, sans McVie, played St. Paul's Xcel Energy Center in April 2013, but Tuesday night in Minneapolis, they felt like a different band altogether.

Early on, the set crackled with a certain nervous energy from the stage, especially during the rockers "The Chain" and "Second Hand News." It was charming to see a bunch of old pros actually sweat a little bit while missing the occasional note or chugging ahead a little too fast. Soon after, though, the band locked into a groove together, with McVie's vocals and keyboards adding an extra dimension throughout the show, which fell just short of 2 1/2 hours.

Each band member seemed to be operating at full speed, including rock-steady bassist John McVie, fresh from battling cancer last fall.

The oft-grumpy Lindsey Buckingham took the opportunity to focus on his blazing guitar work. "I'm So Afraid" ended with a solo that had middle-aged guys literally rushing up to the lip of the stage to cheer him on. Stevie Nicks turned in some of her finest Mac vocals in ages. She also took the opportunity to thank the cable drama "American Horror Story" after she wrapped "Seven Wonders." (That song, and Nicks herself, played a key role in the show's last season.)

An acoustic set midway through the set offered a trio of songs that had the audience swooning, and occasionally tearing up: "Big Love," "Landslide" and "Never Going Back Again." The vibes were so good, it was even easy to forgive Professor Buckingham for telling us he now sees "Big Love" as "a meditation on the power and importance of change."

The ageless McVie thanked the band and the crowd, cooing: "It's a dream come true, a chance you don't often get in life." Everyone on stage shared that jovial mood, with Nicks, Buckingham and Fleetwood each taking time out to praise her, with wide grins that suggested they were serious.

Fleetwood Mac has already started work on a new album, which means this probably won't be a one-off reunion.

As Buckingham himself said from the stage: "This is a band that continues to evolve through good times and adversity. This is just, I guess, the latest chapter. It's a beautiful, profound, poetic new chapter now that this lady is back with us. And it's a chapter that is going to go on for a while, a chapter that is going to yield much fruit. We are very, very excited."

Full review and photos

Love the stage... Love the backdrop graphics even more than last year... Christine looks and sounds fantastic!  Stevie and Lindsey look and sound amazing as do Mick and John. So happy John is doing better. He's trimmed down it looks like since last year... Lindsey's dropped the leather jacket look for a more refined cropped blazer type jacket.  Stevie, always in black doesn't seem to have any wardrobe changes except for her shawls or wraps. So great to hear these 5 playing together again!!

The best way to open a show! John's monster bass prominent mid-way... Christine's first tune is the second song in the set... Hitting those hi notes!

Stevie does that little twirly thing mid-way through the song which I think is cool... And the shawl seems to have been toned down a bit.  So good to hear Everywhere!!  Christine sounds really strong vocally for being away from it for so many years... Wow!

Hello... When was the last time you heard THIS live!  1987? 1988?  Sounds pretty good... Stevie gives a shout out the American Horror Story which sort of resurrected the song this past year with Stevie's appearance on the show.  Nothing much to say about Big Love... Great song.. Always a set staple the way Lindsey performs the song. A show stopper. He's the man!

Nothing much to say about Landslide... perfect song in any set! Great audience sing-a-long. Never Going Back Again... Pretty much the same as in previous shows... Great song!

This is from the white Fleetwood Mac album released in 1975.  Fleetwood Mac's first top 20 hit in the U.S.  Great to hear this back in the set again...

What... 1990? Is that the last tour we heard Little Lies? Sounds amazing! Stevie with her crackhead dance during Gold Dust Woman which she started last year... Great addition to the song extending it out!




With Lindsey on guitar... Beautiful!!!


Unknown said...

The best part of Stevie he films Mick on drums. Strange choice.

c p raulston said...

These reviews really get me excited about seeing F M in Houston in December. The 5 originals back together again, and I am so happy to hear that they still sound great!!! They are an amazing band and I love ALL of their music through all of their ups and downs!!! for the past 35 years. They are truly amazing!! I can't wait until 12/15.

Anonymous said...

I like the stage set better than last year, it's cleaner, not so busy and the graphics are cool. Love "Seven Wonders" and all of Christine's songs. Am surprised no "Stand Back". Still don't think "Sisters Of The Moon" sounds all that great, didn't last year either. Would rather have had "Angel" brought back. Chris has definitely brought back the sunny side of the band, Lindsey is less aggressive, and Stevie is her usual friendly self. Great to have all three of their voices together again.

Anonymous said...

Also what I am surprised at is why Stevie's mike stand is not back at center stage in front of Mick's drums, now that Christine is back. All those years without her made it odd to have Stevie off center since it was her and Lindsey fronting the show. But now with Chris back is seems like Stevie should be right in the center where she belongs. Wonder why they've done that?

me said...

I growled out loud when the camera panned to Mick on Stevie's dance! Seriously? I also feel it's wise to drop Stand Back and long over due. It doesn't sound that good anymore and it makes my cringe as it just compounds the damage on her voice with every performance. It should be dropped from her solo set as well unless she wants to attempt that acoustic version from 94.

Robert said...

Chris sounded tentative during YMLF but sounded great during Everywhere. It's gotta be so hard after not singing or playing for years (which I completely believe) to hit a world tour at 71, but I bet she'll be fine in the long-run.

Yes, Stevie's mic should absolutely be dead center now, I don't get that at all. Little Lies sounded surprisingly good. Seven Wonders (now down two keys) just sounds too slow to have much impact. Same goes for Sisters.

I bet they'll change up the tour a bit before they head to England. I think some of the lesser-knowns that they kept in are odd choices. Nothing wrong with I Know I'm Not Wrong or Sisters, but yeah, something like Angel would slay.

Anonymous said...

Realistically, I am pretty happy--let's be honest EXCITED--about this set list. Christine's single hits back with Stevie's and Lindsey's standards really help the balance of the show. So happy that so much TANGO IN THE NIGHT is in the set. Love Stand Back, but for this tour, glad it's out. The stage is very nicely arranged. The focus is the music, not necessarily that Christine's back, not Lindsey's antics, not Stevie's fabulous fringy shawls and jackets. Just unity and music.

Ideally, I wish some things were changed. First, would have picked something like Little Lies after the Chain. I love Dreams but was really hoping that they might play it later in the set as an acoustic piece. (Wouldn't it be cool if the roadies rolled out an actual Fender Rhodes for Christine while Mick was on the cocktail set?!) For Stevie's Tusk song, I really wished it was anything but SOTM--never have been a fan of that song and would have killed for Angel. Also, I was really hoping Hold Me would make the set or that they would do the extended shredder guitar version of Rhiannon like from the 70s and early 80s. Also, would have liked one more sweet "goodnight" song before Songbird like Say Goodbye or Farmer's Daughter. Did anyone else get the mild impression that they were skirting around the whole Say You Will period?

All this is just fantasy and honestly, it was a marvelous show. With Christine back after not playing/performing for so long, it's great in my opinion that they are sticking to mostly hits. Can't wait for December!

Anonymous said...

Christine McVie is unreal. Her voice is so smooth. Even on these crappy audience recordings she sounds excellent.

Brian said...

ya I think the recording made it sound worse that it appeared. not a big fan of sisters of the moon either change that out with Sara. the song i thought they were going to play and they didn't was Hold me reports came out that they were going to play it and I hope they put it in the set before the boston that song. great to here seven wonders hope they don't drop it out.The crowd loved it great applause after she played it.

jj said...

Is there an opening act? What time does FM go on stage?

Nickslive said...

no opening act... be in your seat at 8

Kevin Booth said...

After watching this on the web from Florida, my only wish is that I was back in Minnesota to see them in person. They are amazing and I have always been a fan of their music collectively as well as a huge fan of Christine. From one musician to another, "rock on my friends".

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