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The Providence Journal (06/09/2005), You can't go back, but Nicks, Henley give it a go < Stevie Nicks < Main Page

The Providence Journal (06/09/2005), You can't go back, but Nicks, Henley give it a go

The Providence Journal, June 9, 2005

You can't go back again, but Nicks, Henley give it a go

by Rick Massimo
Journal Pop Music Writer

MANSFIELD -- Last night's double bill at the Tweeter Center featured two singers from '70s-era bands who found '80s solo success: Don Henley of the Eagles and Stevie Nicks of Fleetwood Mac. Both tackled their Reagan-era solo material, with a sprinkling of their old bands' tunes thrown in, but the results were mixed.

Nicks' most recent solo album was 2001's Trouble in Shangri-La, but last night's set list came from Fleetwood Mac and her two biggest solo records, 1981's Bella Donna and 1983's The Wild Heart (along with the Bonnie Raitt cover "Circle Dance"). Nicks was in fine voice throughout, but on the whole it took her show a while to get going.

Her band, led by L.A. session veteran and longtime Nicks accomplice Waddy Wachtel, was too booming, and her rhythm section in particular too stiff, to do justice to Mac songs such as "Dreams" and "Rhiannon" (which especially fell flat, with too much deconstruction in the intro and coda).

They did manage a decent take of the sprightly piano-driven "Enchanted," a Wild Heart song that channels the effortless pop that Christine McVie used to specialize in for Fleetwood Mac). And they charged through the synth-laden hits "Stand Back" and set closer "Edge of Seventeen," and Nicks took over with an incandescent take on the vocal-and-piano ballad "Beauty and the Beast."

Henley did several of the solo songs and Eagles tunes that local audiences heard at the Eagles concert at the Dunkin' Donuts Center in March, including "Desperado," "Boys of Summer," "Life in the Fast Lane" and "Dirty Laundry." But even when he was repeating himself, his band made the difference. For one thing, though the happy anarchy of Joe Walsh was missing, he had two hot guitar players (who particularly lit up "Life in the Fast Lane"). For another, he made a smart move by replacing himself on drums and moving to the front of the stage.

While Henley didn't introduce his bandmates, his drummer had the imperceptible behind-the-beat groove that made "Last Worthless Evening" and "Boys of Summer," two songs that are metronomic on record, come alive.

Nothing could save "I Put a Spell on You," an ill-advised stab at the Screamin' Jay Hawkins classic. Henley's voice is at its strongest when it's quietly trying to burrow into your mind. The opening couplet of last night's opening song, "The Genie," is a case in point: Henley can make "Is this what you wanted?/ Did you even think twice?" sounds like one's own conscience. Declamations such as "I Put a Spell on You," "Dirty Laundry" and "All She Wants to Do is Dance" don't work as well, although last night they did groove.

Nicks and Henley teamed up on the hit "Leather and Lace" back in the '80s, so it was no surprise that they performed it last night as Nicks' encore. Henley also guested on Nicks' versions of "Gold Dust Woman," "Circle Dance" and "Stop Draggin' My Heart Around" (originally recorded as a duet with Tom Petty). During Henley's set, Nicks joined him for "Hotel California," "New York Minute" and "Last Worthless Evening."

Date: 2005-06-09         Number of views: 1700

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