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Gund Arena, Cleveland
Like old friends who get together every few years, Fleetwood Mac and its fans reunited again at Cleveland's three-quarters-filled Gund Arena for a trip down memory lane, pulling out songs like old snaLike old friends who get together every few years, Fleetwood Mac and its fans reunited again at Cleveland's three-quarters-filled Gund Arena for a trip down memory lane, pulling out songs like old snapshots and contrasting them with new endeavors.
The result was at times emotional and always powerful.
For decades, the politics of sex and love fueled the fire behind Fleetwood Mac, but the onstage tension that was so palpable during the Rumours era no longer carries the same weight.
Instead, when former lovers Stevie Nicks and Lindsey Buckingham exchange glances on stage, which they do quite frequently, what was once a glare appears to have become a common bond of love, acceptance, and forgiveness.
The evening began with the familiar sounds of the "The Chain," which was followed by the equally compelling "Dreams." Crisp and tight, the band was backed by seven supporting members.
Without Christine McVie, often the writer of the band's most standard pop/rock fare, Buckingham's guitar presence took center stage throughout the majority of the 24-song set with impunity, proving his talents and musical ability are the band's lifeblood.
The group succeeded in providing a well-rounded set that included obscure material ("Beautiful Child" and "Eyes of the World"), lost hits ("Gold Dust Woman" and "Landslide"), and familiar anthems ("Don't Stop").
Invariably, Fleetwood Mac remains tethered to its past. The shadow of lost love and the bitterness that followed seem as important as the group's musical vitality.
But the stage show is not so much a celebration of nostalgia but rather of the spirit of growing and moving on while still remembering. And for Fleetwood Mac and its fans, that's still a formula for success.—JB