(WARNER BROS. 23607-1, $8.29)
After a series of group and solo efforts that smacked of overloads of either eccentricity (Tusk, drummer Mick Fleetwood's The Visitor, guitarist Lindsey Buckingham's Law and Order), self-indulgence (Fleetwood Mac Live), or both (Stevie Nicks's Bella Donna), it's very comforting to hear this band back on the whole-is-greater-than-the-sum-of-its-parts solid ground of Mirage. Christine McVie's "Hold Me" leads the way, and rightly so, since it almost clinically demonstrates the deceptively simple craft that goes into Fleetwood Mac's songs ' classically based piano figures, loopy guitar lines, interlocking bass and drum patterns, and that exquisite harmony singing. Of special note here are Nicks's surprisingly even-keeled trio of compositions, Christine's ethereal "Wish You Were Here," and Buckingham's internally combusting "Book of Love." Anyone keeping a straight face through the goofy Buddy Holly/Mystics-inspired "Oh Diane" is hereby banished from the turntable immediately.
vol. 98 no. 6/ pg. 134 "High Notes"