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Columbus, Ohio    Nationwide Arena, April 18, 2009


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Mac Is Back (and Forth) in Columbus. (Nationwide A

Written by Todd Richards Apr 20, 2009 at 09:35 PM
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It was great to hear the Mac after almost a four year wait, and even without a new album to be excited about, by the time show-day arrived - I was in a Fleetwood Mac Frenzy. Unable to attend the Friday 4/17 show in my hometown of Cleveland, I made the 2 1/2 hour drive south to Columbus to see the new salvo of Fleetwood Mac live.

Happily, the band sounded great, and while there were clearly some bumps in the road, it never took away from the overall joy in the crowd, whose voices sometimes overpowered the band itself.

The set list didn't change from published reports, as I'm sure most tours don't (for the benefit of sound and lighting cues). But without a third vocalist (the now retired Christine McVie) it did become a bit of an etheir-or song choice. Without cheating, I could almost predict what song was coming up next by who stayed on stage when (Stevie's costume changes). Without Christine it really has become a back-and-forth between the remaining composers, and although all the players are on the songs we know, the distance between them all on-stage makes it feel less and less like a band, a unit, or even this great thing that all the players say it is. Only one time did Steve really come over to see Lindsey and really interact, otherwise, they both just cris-crossed the stage to wave or show off a solo.

The simple staging did make the music the focus, but sadly, some of the lighting cues were off, and the background screen was way too light to really see anything with the rest of the glare. (I really missed the shots of the USC Marching Band during tusk too...) It wasn't until the halfway point that the moving lightscreens really started 'redesigning' the stage per song.

I've now seen the Mac four times. The previous three include the Cleveland tourstop of The Dance tour, then the two dates for Say You Will. All were enjoyable, because there was something unique to each show (who can forget the amazing rainstorm bellowing from over the hill at Blossom in '04 during the haunting organ of "I'm So Afraid"?). This tour was also unique, in that I finally got to hear "Oh Well" live (the real nod to Mick and John, as Lindsey and Stevie both played solo numbers in the set). The addition of "Storms" was a welcome one, and the crowd reacted well. FM on the road really is a combination of the FM quartet, plus half of Lindsey's solo band and the ladies from Stevies (evident in the new take on "Tusk - the same Lindsey played on his last solo tour last fall).
For me? I'd love to hear a new arrangement of "Sisters Of The Moon" - how about a quartet with the back-up ladies? truely the "Sisters..." themselves.

Maybe the happiest moments came from spoken words this night, the hint of another FM studio album by Lindsey, the storytelling of the meaning of "Gypsy" by Stevie, or the long list of thank yous by Mick (John, of course, played the role of "the quiet one").

As for the swag. Well, using pictures from the last tour seems (seems? is!!!) like a cop-out. Really - you couldn't get the four members in the same room to pose for a new t-shirt portrait or poster? Is it really that rediculous in the FM Camp? No one was there to record rehersals in LA or Pittsburgh? There was no tourbook (even if it wasn't a greatest hits tour - what a perfect opprotunity to update the band history), only stuffed penguins (always cute) and bears. I will admit - I updated my FM hat collection, and was a sucker for the dogtags.

I had a great time at the show - there were no real surprises, but I certianly got what I came for. The Unleashed 09 Tour may go down as a greatest hits tour - but maybe it will be remembered as the tour just before....

Now my research is done - on to the FM Marathon in June - look for all the info on that coming up here on The Penguin.

Todd R.
The Dance'97
Say You Will '03
Say You Will '04
Unleashed '09

Todd Richards is a radio producer and host at WBWC in Cleveland, home of the Fleetwood Mac Marthon some 9 summers in the last 15 years. Look for a new edition later on this year.
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Written by Cindy Apr 20, 2009 at 09:31 PM
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My husband and daughters surprised with Tickets to the Columbus show last Sat.
night, it was so exciting and a fantastic show!!!! I have been a Stevie fan
forever, but have never seen them in concert. They were all great--and Lindsey is
so talented!! I had the best time ever, thank you for the experience!!!!
Definitely go, if you can--even if you have drive 5 hours--it was worth it!!!
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Written by Michele Apr 20, 2009 at 09:29 PM
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I woke up half way through the night with songs from the show still literally streaming in my head. I had never been to a Mac show prior to the April 18th show in Columbus, OH and let me just say, I was absolutely BLOWN AWAY. High energy, apparent harmony on stage and nailing their hits one after another left me realizing how today's music does not even hold a candle to the sound and depth of this great band.

Buckingham looked as though he could have played another hour (after the already 2.5 hour show). He never missed a note-absolutely stellar musician. Stevie belted out the hits one after another with only the style and uniqueness she can deliver....I would have paid to hear her alone. I LOVE YOU STEVIE!!!! Never Going Back Again was so incredible LIVE-Buckingham's rendition really kept me hanging on to each word and chord-Additionally, during the second encore, Nicks delivered her song Silver Springs with so much passion--She absolutely did not hold back.

Days leading up to the show I re-watched the making of Rumours (from VH1) as well as obsessively listened to the Rumours album. I think that is what makes the music and show so amazing. The intensity of relationship dynamics within Fleetwood Mac was and still is incredible! To still work together and create a breath taking sound and performance after it all is impressive-to say the least!

I am only 30 and was not around to experience them live at the height of their careers/fame-I sure I wish I would have been. This is true talent-something magical that is absolutely lacking from today's "music."

I love you FLEETWOOD MAC! Thank you for living up to my high expectations!!! I can't wait to catch the next show!
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Written by Kristi Cooper Apr 20, 2009 at 09:26 PM
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OMG just saw them in Columbus Ohio Saturday.... front row.... UNBELIEVABLE... the energy up front was amazing.... it took a while for all the people to mesh together in why we were all there... to see them ROCK.... I have seen them about 4 times and this was by far the best and they were having sooo much fun!! Lindsey and Mick rocked and rocked and rocked! and then just one other word we couldn't stop yelling in the front row...."STEVIEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE" highly recommend you get out there and see them!!
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Columbus Ohio concert

Written by CJ Murray Apr 20, 2009 at 11:09 AM
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I am still speechless after attending Saturday night's concert at Nationwide Arena. Fleetwood Mac was purely amazing. Having grown up listening to their music, I have always wanted to see them live. I've now had my opportunity, and I was blown away. I have been to many concerts, but I have to say that this was the best show I have ever seen.

It was really cool to see Stevie do her thing, and Lindsey was astonishing to say the least. He played with so much energy and passion, and between the crowd feeding off the energy, and Lindsey (and the rest of the band) feeding off the crowd; well it made for a fantastic night of music and fun. I was just blown away at their skill level as musicians.

If you have an opportunity to catch one of their shows coming to a city near you, I would highly recommend getting a ticket. You will not be disappointed. I took a friend who was familiar with the band, albeit not a huge fan. He was so impressed that the following day, he went home and downloaded their ENTIRE collection of work. That's how impressive they were Saturday night. Thank you Fleetwood Mac for putting on the best show that we both have ever seen!
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