Rod Stewart’s mini-residency has dominated a packed opening week at the Hydro but this visit from American MOR legends Fleetwood Mac was no less prestigious – and a touch more consistent in terms of musical quality.
Fleetwood Mac - SSE Hydro, Glasgow
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It was difficult to argue with the opening salvo of classics from the mega-selling Rumours album, which has lately had the dubious distinction of a Glee makeover. The veteran four-piece delivered decidedly non-jazz hands renditions of Second Hand News and The Chain, still a sublime showcase of their natural harmonies, John McVie’s magnificent rumbling bass and Lindsey Buckingham’s blistering guitar playing, followed by Stevie Nicks’ musically smooth yet lyrically barbed Dreams.
Their quartet of tracks from Tusk was a mixed bag – Not That Funny was not that loveable – but it was Mick Fleetwood’s time to shine on the irresistible tribal throb of the title track.
Much of the performance played on the chemistry between former partners Nicks, our lady of the gothic shawls, and Buckingham, the birthday boy who was treated to an impromptu rendition of Happy Birthday by the crowd (“Don’t remind me,” he deadpanned) and some projectile undies.
The pair walked onstage hand-in-hand, slow-danced briefly to Sara and tried to outdo each other with the overwrought melodrama of Gold Dust Woman and I’m So Afraid. Buckingham’s Sad Angel bustled along with more momentum than melody, while Nicks described the winsome Without You as “the nicest thing I ever wrote about he and I”. But it was the bitter songs they wrote about each other – Go Your Own Way and Don’t Stop – and the intimate, healing finale of Say Goodbye which won the day.