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Lindsey Buckingham album review: It will appeal to any Fleetwood Mac fan

Lindsey Buckingham’s new album will appeal to any Fleetwood Mac fan: At 71, he still knows how to introduce a rousing melody to a riveting rhythm


Lindsey Buckingham                   Lindsey Buckingham                   Out Friday

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Heaven 17 

Roundhouse, London                                                      Touring November 5-27

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The 1970s are sometimes dismissed as the decade that taste forgot. These days they feel more like the decade that forgot to finish. Every week, without fail, you can find Queen, Abba, David Bowie, Elton John and Bob Marley in the album chart. 

Doing best of all, with a studio LP still selling alongside a compilation, are Fleetwood Mac.

The LP in question, Rumours, was made by the classic line-up of Mick Fleetwood, John and Christine McVie, Stevie Nicks and Lindsey Buckingham – who, in 2018, was stunned to find the others giving him the sack.

The LP, Rumours, was made by the classic line-up of Mick Fleetwood, John and Christine McVie, Stevie Nicks and Lindsey Buckingham (above)

The LP, Rumours, was made by the classic line-up of Mick Fleetwood, John and Christine McVie, Stevie Nicks and Lindsey Buckingham (above)

Buckingham was ousted after Nicks, the lead singer (and his ex), allegedly said: ‘Either he goes or I go.’ As if the band weren’t enough of a soap opera already, Fleetwood is reportedly keen to reinstate him.

Buckingham’s new solo album shows why someone might want him out – and why they might take him back. He can make himself difficult to like. The opening track, Scream, goes ‘I love it when you scream’, which seems insensitive in the #MeToo era. 

The second track, he says, is ‘about the challenges couples face in long-term relationships’. You wouldn’t know this from the title, which is all about him: it’s called I Don’t Mind. Very big of you, Lindsey.

The third track, On The Wrong Side, is about getting the boot. We’ve all been there, but at least we haven’t written self-pitying songs about it.

After that, Buckingham suddenly shapes up and shows his class. At 71, the author of Tusk still knows how to introduce a rousing melody to a riveting rhythm. The elegant pop-rock of Blind Love, Power Down and Blue Light will appeal to any Fleetwood Mac fan.

Meanwhile, in London, thousands of people greeted the reopening of the Roundhouse. And most of them were about 62, because Heaven 17 were playing the first two albums by The Human League, Reproduction and Travelogue, released in 1979-1980. 

On keyboards, wearing a fedora, was Martyn Ware, who co-founded both bands; on vocals, the mighty Glenn Gregory (no hat), Hayley Williams and Rachel Meadows; on visuals, the sleeve designer Malcolm Garrett. 

With extra synths from Flo Sabeva, these angular old electro-pop songs felt strikingly fresh, even warm. One track goes: ‘Continual pain, continual pain, continual pain.’ At the bar, two 62-year-olds sang it to each other with delight. 

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