With the amount of history they have, it's surprising that it's taken this long for Lindsey Adams Buckingham and Christine Anne Perfect, better known as Christine McVie, to craft an album as a duo. The collaborators have worked for eons as members of the legendary rock band Fleetwood Mac, a group that dominated the ‘70s music charts with their "California sound." They were finally recognized for their contribution to the annals of music when they were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1998.
That same year, McVie decided to exit stage right and go into semi-retirement. The band's friction and infighting were infamous, so it didn't seem unusual for McVie to take a hiatus after a 30-year run with the family-like troupe. However, in 2014, she rejoined her rock & roll crew for the On with the Show Tour, which spawned the Buckingham/McVie album, a perfect concoction of Fleetwood Mac vim and vigor, contemplative lyrics and industrious solo musical achievements.
Released last month, the 10-track Buckingham/McVie has charted higher than either artist's solo work. The songs almost seem arranged in a call and response way, chronologically, with Buckingham on lead vocals on one song, McVie leading the next, and so on. McVie's voice has always been lighter than feather. The songs she fronted with Fleetwood Mac had a levity to them, compared to their usual earthy, intense songs, and her technique is the same here.
Even on the bluesy "Carnival Begin," her tone delivers an edge of hope that a singer with a lower register or dolorous quality wouldn't have given it. "Over My Head," from the 1975 Fleetwood Mac album, also has a rich tone like this, but a darker message. McVie's airy voice, though, also gives that tune a ray of sunshine. "Red Sun," with beginning beats that sound a bit like Buckingham's "Trouble," is also a standout entry by McVie and has all the trappings of a Fleetwood Mac gem.
Lindsey Buckingham's tried and true finger-picking style is immediately noticeable on all of his songs on the album. His vocals, strong vibrato laced with silky-smooth stylings, are as passionate as ever, particularly on "Sleeping Around the Corner," "In My World," and "On with the Show." When Buckingham first entered the music scene in the early ‘70s, it was with then girlfriend, Stevie Nicks. Their first album was Buckingham Nicks (1973) and it was utterly enchanting.
Things have come full circle for Buckingham on his release with his other Fleetwood Mac bandmate. It's a solid entry in each performer’s catalog, and more broadly, Fleetwood Mac's. Overall, the album doesn't have the spark of a Buckingham-Nicks collaboration. That being said, Buckingham/McVie covers a chiaroscuro of emotions, boxed neatly in Fleetwood Mac-type rhythms, with every tune gorgeous and heartfelt.
Notable Tracks: “Carnival Begin” | “In My World” | “On with the Show” | “Red Sun”
SEE Fleetwood Mac perform their classic songs and a handful from Buckingham/McVie on tour | Dates