Showing posts with label Los Angeles 11-28-14. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Los Angeles 11-28-14. Show all posts

Sunday, November 30, 2014

Reviews: Fleetwood Mac Live in Los Angeles "Fleetwood Mac is having a moment."

Fleetwood Mac at the Forum: A band reunited, team spirit intact
by Mikael Wood
LA Times

Fleetwood Mac is having a moment.

Decades after its late-1970s commercial peak, the band can still fill arenas around the world with fans eager to relive memories indelibly linked to old hits like “Dreams” and “Go Your Own Way.”

Yet Fleetwood Mac’s polished pop-rock has also become a touchstone for younger, hipper acts such as Jenny Lewis and One Direction. In 2011, the television show “Glee” built an episode around the group’s music; the next year it was the subject of a high-profile tribute album.

So it’s not hard to understand Christine McVie’s decision, announced in January, to rejoin the band after retiring in 1998.

She helped create the legend -- shouldn’t she enjoy the glory?

Fleetwood Mac’s tour with McVie, whose presence restores the lineup that made the gazillion-selling “Rumours,” stopped at the Forum for two concerts over the weekend. (It will return for a third on Dec. 6.)

But if the cheers that greeted McVie on Saturday confirmed her reasoning, the singer’s participation also reminded you that, despite its huge success, this is a deeply weird rock group, with three songwriters – McVie, Lindsey Buckingham and Stevie Nicks – whose approaches hardly seem compatible.

Backed by the stalwart rhythm section of drummer Mick Fleetwood and bassist John McVie (to whom she was married until 1977), Christine McVie was warm and trusting in “You Make Loving Fun” and the buoyant “Everywhere.” The cheerful optimism – and the propulsive groove – of “Don’t Stop” inspired thousands in the audience to sing along.

And though “Little Lies” hinted at the romantic deception that famously runs through Fleetwood Mac’s history, the tune’s sweet melody neutralized any sense of real desperation.

Buckingham offered no such protection as he growled the lyrics of “Big Love,” about the cold comfort of material fortune, over harsh finger-picked guitar. He was similarly intense in the stomping “Tusk” and a long, raw rendition of the bluesy “I’m So Afraid.”

“Second Hand News” was catchier but still anxious, its crisp tempo a promise of escape from the turmoil the song describes.

Then there was Nicks, who set aside her bandmates’ realism in favor of imagery rooted in history and mythology: “Rhiannon,” “Sisters of the Moon,” “Seven Wonders,” the last of which, she told the audience, had made it back into Fleetwood Mac’s set list after the song appeared in a recent episode of “American Horror Story.”

That quasi-mystical vibe is a big part of what’s endeared Nicks in particular to a new generation of musicians, including the sisters of L.A.’s Haim, to whom she dedicated “Landslide” on Saturday. (The Haim sisters weren’t the only admirers who turned up to pay their respects: According to a tweet from the Forum, Harry Styles of One Direction took in Friday’s show.)

Twirling in one of her trademark shawls during “Gypsy,” Nicks drew a wildly enthusiastic response from the crowd. And fans seemed untroubled by the adjustments she made to the melody of “Dreams,” a song whose high notes are now presumably out of her reach.

Yet that adulation hasn’t led, as it does with so many stars, to an unquenchable need for more.

Here Nicks appeared happy -- even relieved, perhaps -- to share the spotlight she grew accustomed to filling while McVie was away, and it was that sense of camaraderie that held Fleetwood Mac’s internal contradictions together.

“Once you come back, you can’t leave again,” Nicks recalled telling McVie in a rambling monologue about the reunion. That she meant it was clear when McVie, singing her ballad “Songbird,” closed the show.

Fleetwood Mac Returns to the Forum Intact: Concert Review
by Craig Rosen
The Hollywood Reporter

In a recent interview with Mojo magazine, Fleetwood Mac drummer and co-namesake Mick Fleetwood admitted the band had been a bit "one-legged" in the 16 years it carried on without keyboardist/vocalist Christine McVie. If that was the case, Fleetwood Mac was back on two legs, standing tall at the Forum on Black Friday for what was — according to a photo montage from its '70s heyday proudly displayed in the Forum Club — its 13th appearance at the now remodeled venue.

Given that this was the group's first date back in L.A. with Christine McVie and its history with the building, Friday's show had all the trappings of a special event and Fleetwood Mac didn't disappoint.
Opening with "The Chain," the only song on the band's 1977 blockbuster Rumours written by all five members, Fleetwood Mac at first celebrated its unity before turning the spotlight on the returning McVie, who sang lead on the even bigger Rumours era hit, "You Make Loving Fun."

With all due respect to Fleetwood, we'd argue that Fleetwood Mac was more like a three-legged dog without Christine McVie, with frontwoman Stevie Nicks and frontman and guitarist Lindsey Buckingham holding up the front end while Fleetwood and fellow original member, bassist John McVie, together, supporting part of back. At the Forum, it was clear just how crucial Christine McVie's role is, not only providing keyboards (although the band was supplemented by an additional keyboardist/guitarist and guitarist) and backing vocals for Nicks and Buckingham (the band was also assisted by three female backing vocalists), but providing an earthy lead vocal presence to counter Nicks' sometimes out-three gypsy visions and Buckingham's hyper emotionalism. And, it was that variety that made Friday's show such a joy.

Christine McVie's initial run in the spotlight was followed by Nicks' turn on "Dreams," then Buckingham on "Second Hand News," back to Nicks with "Rhiannon," extended with the singer altering her phrasing from the recorded version, proving this was no mere carbon copy of the record. The Tusk album track "I Know I'm Not Wrong" was a brief interlude from the hit parade before the title track, complete with video of the USC Marching Band performing the song on the video screen, for which Christine McVie added accordion and Buckingham replicated the elephant walk with guitar in tow.

The first third of the show was stacked so heavily with classic hits, it made you wonder if the band could sustain the momentum for the remainder of the gig, but that proved not to be a problem, as it used different configurations and vocalists to keep it interesting.

And the hits kept coming, as well, including McVie's "Say That You Love Me," the band's first-ever top 40 hit after the veteran British blues band was revitalized with the addition of Nicks and Buckingham. After Nicks sang "Seven Wonders," she gave a shout out to American Horror Story, which last season featured her in a cameo and the song, prompting the band to add it to the set.

Emotional highlights were natural to Buckingham and Nicks sharing the stage, Buckingham offering a startling acoustic reading of "Big Love," after noting how the song's meaning has changed over the years and then Nicks dedicating the ballad "Landslide" to "her fairy goddaughters" before the Forum's roof sparkled as she sang.

Nicks also took the spotlight in "Gypsy" and "Gold Dust Woman." The former was proceeded by a story about her early years in the Bay Area and remaining true to your dreams, while the latter had her donning a gold shawl and offering a freeform dance as she teetered on her high heels while the band provided a psychedelic interlude.

Towards the end of the set, the monster hit "Go Your Own Way" came off as a celebratory jam, with Nicks and Buckingham facing the drum kit and Fleetwood responding with a devilish grin.

During the encore, "World Turning" was punctuated with the hoariest of all arena-rock clich├ęs — the drum solo. Yet Fleetwood made it tolerable by turning it into a call-and-response exercise with the audience, spouting gibberish and sporting wacky facial expressions between mercilessly pounding his kit.

"Don't Stop" had all three main voices joining in unison and also seemed to be a theme for the two-and-half hour show and this 2014 tour. After Nicks took it down with "Silver Springs" and Buckingham (on piano) accompanied McVie on "Songbird," Nicks returned to offer the story of Christine McVie's return to the band. Then Fleetwood returned with his two young daughters in tow to once again thank the crowd and return the love. It was almost as if they didn't want to stop.

Fleetwood Mac At The Forum
As they should be.

by Bob Lefsetz
The Lefsetz Letter

Once upon a time our bands graduated to the arenas where the basketball teams played, now we’ve got our OWN PLACE!

That’s right, music lives at the Forum. And if you’ve never been, get in your automobile and make a pilgrimage to where there’s no scoreboard, no sports paraphernalia, only music. Where you can partake of the elixir that once was.

That’s right.

There may be screens, but this is positively a pre-MTV experience. Back when it was all about the music.

And it was all about the music last night.

It brought tears to my eyes. A hole has been filled. As Mick Fleetwood indicated, the circle is now complete. With Christine McVie back in the band the ship is righted, the Lindsey/Stevie show has a counterweight, and the balance is such that your baby boomer heart will thump and you’ll remember what once was and hopefully will yet be.

Listen to the wind blow
Watch the sun rise

Opening cut side two. We all bought the second album of this configuration of the band without being implored to do so but because we had to, the same way a kid today lines up for an iPhone.

That’s right, we’re sitting in the darkened arena and the band is singing about an unbreakable chain with Christine doing harmonies for the first time in sixteen years and Mick pounds the skins and John holds down the bass and Lindsey picks the notes and Stevie emphatically sings and you just cannot believe that this is happening. It’s not quite the Beatles coming together, but it’s close.

It was like hell freezing over and the Eagles reuniting but at a point in time where you could see the end in sight.

That’s right, even children get older, and I’m getting older too.

How did this happen?

Continue to the full article at The Lefsetz Letter

Dreams (Nov 28, 2014)

Review: Fleetwood Mac Brought Their A-game to The Forum

by: Mark E. Ortega

Fleetwood Mac Live at The Forum
Inglewood, CA - November 28, 2014
Photo: Wes Marsala

In order to see Fleetwood Mac at The Forum on Friday night, I had to give up my New Year’s Eve so that someone else would cover my shift on short notice at my full-time job. After seeing them play nearly three hours on the first of two nights at The Forum, I can say that I made the right choice and that I have zero regrets.

This was the first time since the original lineup played in Los Angeles together in years. Mick Fleetwood (drums), John McVie (bass), Stevie Nicks (vocals), Lindsey Buckingham (lead guitar), and — for the first time since 1998, Christine McVie on the keyboards. They had some help by a talented group of backup musicians, but this was who everyone came to see and they didn’t fail to deliver.

Playing more than two dozen of their greatest hits, it was when McVie’s vocals kicked off “You Make Loving Fun” in the second song of the night that the reunion show felt fully on as the crowd rose to their feet and gave a mini-standing ovation. Throughout the night, the other members of the band commemorated what it meant to them to have the talented singer-songwriter back with the group, and it was clear it meant just as much to the packed house in Inglewood.

Everyone brought their A-games, and Nicks and McVie especially sounded just as good as ever. Though Buckingham’s voice seemed a tad bit withered — perhaps from being the member of the band who maintained the highest level of activity over the past four decades — his guitar-prowess was not hindered one bit. Almost every song showcased Buckingham’s ability to deliver a spine-tingling solo, something he still does as good as anyone in the business. Buckingham’s charisma on stage was met in full force by the rest of the band, quite a feat when you consider Fleetwood Mac has existed for about half a century.

Full Review + Photo Gallery at Grimy Goods

The Chain (Nov 28, 2014)

Sisters of the Moon (Nov 28, 2014)
You Make Loving Fun (Nov 28, 2014)

Everywhere (Nov 29, 2014)

Go Your Own Way (Nov 29, 2014) - Cool angle

Saturday, November 29, 2014

Reviews | Photos | Video: Fleetwood Mac Live in Los Angeles November 28, 2014

Fleetwood Mac Live
Los Angeles, CA - November 28, 2014
The Forum

Fleetwood Mac performed the first of 3 shows at The Forum in Inglewood, CA last night. They perform again tonight (Nov 29th) and a third show is scheduled for December 6th.

Fleetwood Mac Celebrates the Return of Christine McVie at the Forum
By Yuri Shimoda
Live Out Loud Los Angeles

“Our ‘Songbird’ has returned,” happily proclaimed Fleetwood Mac drummer and co-founder Mick Fleetwood last night, the first of the Hall of Fame-inducted band’s three dates at the Forum, as he introduced Christine McVie. The keyboardist/vocalist had left Fleetwood Mac 16 years ago but decided to rejoin the group who launched this On with the Show tour in celebration.

Everyone in the packed arena shared their enthusiasm over McVie’s return. Those on the floor stood the entire time, beginning with the first three songs (“The Chain,” “You Make Loving Fun” and “Dreams”) that were all off the band’s 1977 hit album, Rumours. McVie admitted that since the Fleetwood Mac was once based in Los Angeles, she really loves it here and was happy to be back before transitioning into “Everywhere.”

While McVie’s musicianship and vocals shone on that song, as well as “Say You Love Me” and “Little Lies,” all of the other members were showcased as well. Lindsey Buckingham showed that the years haven’t affected his smooth vocals or guitar prowess, although he jokingly feigned stiff fingers before “Big Love.” He mesmerized with his finger picking on “Never Going Back Again,” delivered a searing solo during “I’m So Afraid” and led the entire audience in sing-alongs of “Go Your Own Way” and “Don’t Stop.”

And there are really no words adequate enough to express the magic of Stevie Nicks. Her performances were memorable each time she stepped to the mic to sing or tell a story and danced around the stage. From the beautifully haunting “Rhiannon,” “Gypsy” and “Sisters of the Moon” to “Seven Wonders” (after which she gave a shout out to “American Horror Story” for giving the song new life), “Gold Dust Woman” (when she draped herself in a shimmering gold shawl) and the legendary “Landslide,” dedicated to her three goddaughters and featuring little white lights set in the ceiling to resemble twinkling stars.

Bassist John McVie proved he is the backbone of every song, while Fleetwood matched his beats with thunder from his drum kit during “Tusk,” featuring video footage of USC’s Trojan Marching Band. Fleetwood also delivered a heart-pumping solo in “World Turning,” the first song of the encore section of the evening, eliciting crowd participation by repeatedly saying, “Don’t be shy now!”

Fully reunited Fleetwood Mac wows the Forum, headed to O.C.
By Kelly A. Swift
Orange County Register

Leave it to Stevie Nicks, ever the mystical muse of Fleetwood Mac, to let us in on the secret – some combination of cosmic vibes, love and magic, and a simple cell phone call – that made the legendary band whole again some 16 years after singer and keyboard player Christine McVie retired from touring.

Yes, McVie picked up the phone and called Nicks in October 2013 to ask if she could come back to the band that had soldiered on with four-fifths of its classic lineup of Nicks, guitarist Lindsey Buckingham, bassist John McVie and drummer Mick Fleetwood. And of course Nicks told her she was welcome whenever and for always.

But that was just the product of deeper machinations in the universe, Nicks said at the close of the band’s sold-out show at the Forum on Friday, the first of four Southern California dates that includes a stop at Honda Center in Anaheim on Sunday, Dec. 7.

“I think that last year at some point in October there was there was some magical thing that went out from all our fans saying, ‘It’s time for Christine to come back,’ ” Nicks said. “We are so thrilled that we got our girl back – you have magical powers.”

Above Photos by: Daniel Knighton
That the feeling was mutual – all that love and magic, natch – was clear from the start of Fleetwood Mac’s two-and-a-half hour show and a set that in its 24 songs included many written and sung by McVie that fans here hadn’t heard since a 1997 tour that included three nights at the then-Irvine Meadows and one at the Hollywood Bowl.

Though this On With The Show tour has run for 20-some shows so far the opening number, “The Chain,” seemed a little rough at the start, the harmonies of Buckingham, Nicks and Christine McVie not quite meshing as smoothly as they should. All felt better though by the opening keyboard bit of the next song, “You Make Loving Fun,” a Christine McVie number that drew tremendous cheers as the crowd welcomed her back into the fold.

This is a band whose fights and fractures were legendary during the height of their fame. Nicks and Buckingham and the McVies each were couples, and then were not. Drug addictions and interband rivalries caused rifts even as Fleetwood Mac made some of the best albums of the era, from the self-titled “White Album” to “Rumours” and “Tusk.”

That they survived all that then is a minor miracle; that they perform as well as they do when they’re all between the ages of 65 to 71 years old must be an even sweeter success.
The show largely unfolded with the three singers taking turns on the songs they wrote and sang lead on. Early in the set that found Nicks singing “Dreams” and “Rhiannon,” the latter of which found her all a-twirl in her gauzy black shawl, bowing deeply to acknowledge the cheers at the end.

Buckingham’s “Second Hand News” and “Tusk” put a spotlight on his high-energy vocals and still-dazzling guitar work, but throughout the night it was the McVie spotlights such as “Everywhere” and “Say You Love Me” that felt just a bit more special given her absence on stage for so many years.

Given how well-known these songs all are you’d be forgiven for thinking there’d be few moments of genuine surprise or deeper emotional connection, but throughout the night many of these older tunes felt fresh in the context of the gang getting back together again.
This was the case even when it was only Buckingham on stage by himself, singing “Big Love” and talking about how the feelings of alienation he felt with the band when he wrote it have faded to meditation now, or later when Nicks joined him for a beautiful take on the always lovely “Landslide.”

Nicks was her usual endearingly hippy-dippy self, at one point giving a shout-out to the TV series “American Horror Story” for featuring the song “Seven Wonders” earlier this year and thus getting it back into their set. She later told a long and rambling anecdote about her earliest days as a singer in San Francisco pre-Fleetwood Mac and how a visit to the lady rock star clothing store later inspired the song “Gypsy.”

Highlights in the final stretch of the main set included McVie’s “Little Lies,” a take on “Gold Dust Woman” that from the ominous guitar line and cowbell opening through Nicks’ gold-shawl-twirling performance was perhaps the tour de force of the show. They closed with “Go Your Own Way” with Buckingham taking the lead vocals but both Nicks and McVie joining in as it built to the finish.

The encore opened with “World Turning,” which featured Fleetwood on an old-fashioned drawn-out drum solo that you didn’t really mind given how animated and happy he seemed, then “Don’t Stop,” which had most of the Forum singing along.

After one more break, McVie returned alone to a piano at center stage, singing “Songbird,” the nickname Fleetwood gave her during the band introductions, alone for a moment, then joined by Buckingham on guitar. A fitting final spotlight for the prodigal daughter now back in the fold.

Above two photos by: Paul A. Hebert (Forum Photos)

SAMPLE FROM EACH OF: The Chain | You Make Loving Fun | Dreams | Second Hand News | Rhiannon | Everywhere | Tusk | Say You Love Me | Seven Wonders | Big Love

SAMPLE FROM EACH OF: Landslide | Never Going Back Again | Over My Head

Over My Head

Gold Dust Woman