FLEETWOOD MAC REUNITIED
In Our Heads We Never Broke Up
Of all their stories rifts and reconciliations, Christine McVie’s return to FLEETWOOD MAC 17 years after her bewildered exit, may be the most extraordinary. And as they stand on the brink of enormous UK shows and (whisper it) an album, it’s the prompt for all five members to open up to MOJO. Cut: good times, bad times, “carnage and intrigue”, plus a massive rubber dildo called Harold. “There’s a lot of love, you know,” they tell JIM IRVIN
It shouldn’t work, but it does: the drummer fractionally behind the beat and bass slightly ahead. For close to 50 years, Mick Fleetwood and John McVie have been locked in their distinctive groove, and upon it they have built and maintained the strange, enduring entity that bears their names.
It’s known dizzying triumphs and weathered catastrophe and decline, and for the last 17 years it has had to cope without singer, keyboard player and hit-writer Christine McVie, MIA since the end of the 1998 tour which celebrated the reunion of the multiplatinum Rumours quintet. At home in England, she effectively shut herself off from her former life. But slowly she realised that she missed it. In 2014, she rejoined the fold.
Better still, she’s writing again – collaborating last year with Lindsey Buckingham and Mick Fleetwood as ex-husband John McVie recovered from a bout with colon cancer. Meanwhile, the quorate Mac have been traversing the U.S. with their On With The Show tour, demand for tickets exceeding all expectations. What began as 42 American shows became 80. This month that production arrives in Europe for a run that includes that six nights at London’s O2 and headline slot at the Isle of Wight festival.
In 1975, shortly after the release of the self-titled set the current line-up refer to as ‘the white album’, the quintet undertook its debut tour and a show at the Capitol Centre in Maryland was filmed. You can see it online. For anyone expecting the slickness and stardust they’ve been associated with, it’s a surprise. The sound is shaky, the stagecraft unfocused. Christine sings songs from the albums they made with Bob Welch, Lindsey tackles Oh Well and Green Manalishi from the Peter Green years. It’s curious but intriguing, the focal point keeps shifting with the musical styles, but that dude with the afro can sure play guitar, and check out the chick with the maracas flitting around the stage like a dragonfly… you can feel the audience being drawn in and won over. Within months this tentative unit will have intrigued its way to superstardom.
Forty years later, they elect to talk individually to MOJO – five stories that make up one. From blues roots and the Peter Green line-up’s doomed majesty, via catastrophe, exile and rebirth in the melodic riches of Rumours and beyond, riffs healed but scars still livid. In order of recruitment: Mick, John, Christine, Stevie and Lindsey. Fleetwood Mac. Continue reading