Fleetwood Mac
Rumours


5.0
classic

Review

by Matthijs van der Lee USER (219 Reviews)
July 2nd, 2010 | 36 replies


Release Date: 1977 | Tracklist

Review Summary: A perfect album if there ever was one.

Fleetwood Mac's Rumours is justfully viewed by the general public as one of the greatest rock records of all time. It earned this status because it succeeds on so many levels: on a basic one, every single song is fantastic. Structurally, it is flawless, each piece taking an extremely fitting position on the tracklist. Most of all though, it is very unified: a true 'album': What made this possible is the relationship struggles in the band at the time, which had 2 couples (!) at the time of recording. In a stunning achievement, all these troubles and uncertainties, but also positive aspects were channeled into the songwriting. The result: the perfect rock album.

Like on its predecessor, Fleetwood Mac, Rumours divides the songwriting between three members, and each of them gets an equal chance to show off their superb skills. Because there are no two consecutive songs with the same lead vocalist, the album keeps flowing extremely well and is therefore far more interesting. Other than that, the bigger, anthemic songs are arranged neatly in between mostly shorter, simpler and direct ones. Not only does this ensure the necessary variety, but it also makes the tracks falling into the latter category far more interesting and effective. Take opener Second Hand News, for example. Not only does it draw the listener in immeadiately and comfortably, it is also a perfect introduction for the theme. As two of the three songwriters are Buckingham and Nicks, a great deal of the album focuses on their breaking relationship, and Buckingham's first song comes right in with lyrics that are clear enough of his stance on the breakup with Nicks:

'One thing I think you should know
I ain't gonna miss you when you go
Been down so long
I've been tossed around enough
Aw Couldn't you just
Let me go down and do my stuff'


There's a lot of negative feelings on Buckingham's side, which is solified by the beautiful little acoustic number Never Going Back Again, which' title obviously speaks for itself. His best song, however, is easily the huge hit Go Your Own Way, with its immortal chorus and rockin' guitar solo (one of his fiercer moments on the album).

The other side of that relationship is of course Stevie Nicks, a woman with a ridiculously sexy voice and quite possibly the best songwriting skills in the band. It is unbelievable that Silver Springs, now a restored b-side, did not originally appear on the album (something that wrecked Nicks, as she has a strong personal connection with the song). It's inclusion on the remaster makes Rumours only so much better than it already was, and easily outdoes her other excellent moments I Don't Want to Know and Gold Dust Woman. Her first appearance Dreams is however her seminal moment: the utter control she has over her singing is nothing short of amazing, as are the lyrics:

'Now there you go again
You say you want your freedom
Who am I to keep you down...down
It's only right that you should
Play it the way that you feel it
But listen carefully to the sound
Of your loneliness
Like a heartbeat, drives you mad
In the stillness of remembering
What you had, And what you lost
Ooooh, say what you had, you know what you lost

Thunder only happens when it's raining
Players only love you when they're playing
They say, women, they will come and they will go
When the rain washes you clean, you'll know
You will know'


And btw, thanks John McVie, that bassline you're playing there is awesome.

Christine McVie, on the other hand, provides a sense of optimism. The upbeat Don't Stop is a definite highlight, and delivers some strong positive lyricism: 'If you wake up and don't want to smile/If it takes just a little while/Open your eyes and look at the day/You'll see things in a different way.'. You Make Loving Fun, her joint best song on the album, goes even further in this optimism: 'Sweet wonderful you/You make me happy with the things you do/Oh, can it be so/This feeling follows me wherever I go.' (and John, more compliments here, that's some funkeh stuff right there). Songbird however deserves special mention: though not as well known as the two aforementioned songs, is yet another definite standout: recorded in an empty stadium with just McVie on vocals and keys, it is the most direct and intimate piece on Rumours.

And although there's a lot more to write about how amazing this record is, you should honestly just go and listen to it if you haven't already. Rumours is an album like no other, and deserves it's classic reputation like no other. Superbly written, varied material, completely unified as an album, fantastically produced, and most importantly: extremely meaningful and connectable for anyone who's ever been in a serious relationship. I'm just going to say it: this is one of the greatest rock records of all time, and if you doubt that, you just haven't listened good enough.

Mac Classics

Dreams
Don't Stop
Go Your Own Way
Silver Springs
The Chain
You Make Loving Fun




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user ratings (664)
Chart.
4.4
superb
other reviews of this album
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Comments:Add a Comment 
BigHans
July 2nd 2010


26454 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

Dammit Nag, posting right as Im about to leave town for the 4th of July. Ill read when I get back.

Nagrarok
July 2nd 2010


8256 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

No idea how this turned out, but album is so amazing.

edit: Damn Hans, since you and me are probaly the greatest Fleetwood fans here, I was looking forward to your opinion most.

NeutralThunder12
July 2nd 2010


8742 Comments


hey Nag, whats up, great review. I hear a lot about this record, my mom actually owns it, would it be something I would like?

AggravatedYeti
July 2nd 2010


7685 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0 | Sound Off

oh this album.

Gyromania
July 2nd 2010


15793 Comments


A little busy trying to write something of my own at the moment, but I promise to read this over after. Of course I obviously agree with your rating 100%

Digging: Lantlos - .neon

EVedder27
July 2nd 2010


6088 Comments


The Chain is an amazing song, I'm gonna have to listen to the rest. Pos, as usual Nag.

AnotherBrick
July 2nd 2010


9770 Comments


+pos+

Jethro42
July 2nd 2010


12456 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

omg this is a classic, so I need to change my rating ..I guess.
edit: Stevie Nicks was my fetish #1 in '70's star chick' category (music).

XulOnerom
July 2nd 2010


1818 Comments


I actually gave this record to my dad as a gift. He was really happy

A truly excellent record

Nagrarok
July 3rd 2010


8256 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

hey Nag, whats up, great review. I hear a lot about this record, my mom actually owns it, would it be something I would like?


Not too sure about that, but everyone should hear this.

I'm gonna have to listen to the rest.


Yes, please do, you'll be missing out.

omg this is a classic, so I need to change my rating ..I guess.


You're damn right you need to change your rating.

Thanks everyone.




Voivod
Staff Reviewer
July 3rd 2010


6151 Comments


kudos Nagrarok. Pos'd.

thanx to you i might leave the metal/extreme metal vein for a while - after all its

summertime lol - and focus more on the 70's classic rock legacy.

Digging: Sumerlands - The Guardian (demo)

Lakes.
July 3rd 2010


27979 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Nice review. Pos'd. I absolutely HATE Go Your Own Way, but the rest I know from this is pretty good. I've been meaning to check out more Fleetwood.

Digging: Weezer - Everything Will Be Alright in the End

Nagrarok
July 3rd 2010


8256 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

thanx to you i might leave the metal/extreme metal vein for a while - after all its

summertime lol - and focus more on the 70's classic rock legacy.


Good for you. I always get out of my metal mood too when the winter passes.

I absolutely HATE Go Your Own Way, but the rest I know from this is pretty good. I've been meaning to check out more Fleetwood.


Whut? Go Your Own Way is one of their best song. But to each their own, I guess. For more Fleetwood, check out their second self-titled (the one I reviewed before this), Tusk and Tango in the Night.

Lakes.
July 3rd 2010


27979 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

I guess I just dislike it because it's so overplayed in my house. We have almost all the Rock Band and Guitar Hero games and my parents used to play "Go Your Own Way" every single week with the volume on full blast. I'm planning to check out Rumours and Tusk, though. "Don't Stop" is a great song.

Nagrarok
July 3rd 2010


8256 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

I've heard a lot of Fleetwood Mac from my parents (which I actually hated when I was a child but now absolutely love), so I know what you mean. I've heard most of these songs countless times now, but they never get old.

Jethro42
July 3rd 2010


12456 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

that's right, they never get old.
5'd

Jim
July 3rd 2010


5110 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

great album

LepreCon
July 3rd 2010


4110 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

Ha well here's an album I probably don't like better than you do, but I agree with you that it is a Classic through and through. Pos'd

BigHans
July 6th 2010


26454 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

Well Im finally back on the grid Nag, great review. The album is just superb. I actually think the worst song is "Don't Stop," but maybe thats just because I've heard it a billion times. I wish I would have been around to pick up Buckingham's sloppy seconds on Stevie.

Nagrarok
July 6th 2010


8256 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

Good to see you're back Hans, and thanks. I couldn't possibly pick a weakest song though, they all just are so good. And yeah, I don't doubt it's just because Don't Stop got overplayed.



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