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San Francisco Chronicle (04/20/2003), Fleetwood Mac < Fleetwood Mac < Main Page

San Francisco Chronicle (04/20/2003), Fleetwood Mac

San Francisco Chronicle, April 20, 2003

Say You Will Warner Bros. $18.98.

by Joel Selvin

Lindsey Buckingham is Brian Wilson, and Fleetwood Mac is his Beach Boys. In his first new album with the group since "Tango in the Night" in 1986, producer Buckingham reconjures the essential Fleetwood Mac with unerring facility.

Mix parts of "Rumours," "Tusk" and "Tango," add Buckingham's perfectionist instincts and ear for detail, age 15 years and you get "Say You Will," which, in some ways, may be the most Fleetwood Mac-ish Fleetwood Mac album yet. Instead of trying to redefine the group and its trademark pop-rock sound, Buckingham chose to celebrate it, flaunt it, revel in it, with an almost swaggering confidence in how he rearranges the familiar elements in gently surprising ways.

From the shadowy, edgy atmospherics of "Murrow" to the stinging processed guitar solo that detonates "Come," Buckingham keeps things nicely off balance. Without the rounder tones of Christine McVie, the album veers more sharply between his intense theatrics and Stevie Nicks' goofy mysticism. Between those poles lies ample room for tension and anxiety, and Buckingham knows well how to plumb that ground.

He is also unmatched in his ability to capture his longtime associate's vocal style. Over the years on her solo recordings, Nicks has been paired with gifted producers and collaborators (mostly recently, Sheryl Crow). But none have ever been able to give her the right variety of contexts or to coax out richly emotional performances the way Buckingham has.

"Something in you brought out something in me that I've never been since," Nicks sings on the title track. It's a sentiment a lot of people will share. 

Thanks to Les for posting this to the Ledge. 

Date: 2003-04-20         Number of views: 1309

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