Say You Will

Fleetwood Mac

Reprise, 2003

REVIEW BY: Jeff Clutterbuck


Back in ye old 2003, Fleetwood Mac's latest album Say You Will was attracting some attention, chiefly due to the fact that both Lindsey Buckingham and Stevie Nicks were recording under the Mac banner for the first time in over a decade. Unfortunately, Christine McVie had declined to join in the fun, so Say You Will failed to be a true "reunion" album. While that doesn't devastate the record, it doesn't help its case either.

Rumours is Fleetwood Mac, I don't care what anyone else says. The hardcore fans probably see it differently, but to the great majority of the population, everything the band had to say was in that record. Much to the band's credit, they have not attempted to copy the sound of that album, but they haven't been able to reach that level of quality either.my_heart_sings_the_harmony_web_ad_alt_250

There are some classic Mac moments to be found here: "What's The World Coming To" captures that '70s California rock sound perfectly. The title track comes off as a clone of "Go Your Own Way," but there are enough differences to make it work. "Peacekeeper," the first single off the album, could have fit in on the eclectic Tusk; the sound is a little more complex than the other single material.

After these few tracks, the record is really a hit or miss deal. "Murrow Turning Over In His Grave" has some great vocal production work, and a pretty decent guitar solo from Buckingham, whose guitar skills have been underappreciated. The duet between Lindsey and Nicks on "Miranda" isn't your usual trite, romantic affair, either; the track rocks more than one would expect.

Much like Tusk, the songs on this record don't sound necessarily bad and the production is excellent. It's just that with 80 minutes of material, enough to have constituted a double album back in the day, you had better bring your "A" game. Good example -- "Steal Your Heart Away." Light, breezy, etc. There's nothing to point out that ruins the song. It just isn't anything special.

Other reviewerss harped on this, and I'll join the chorus: Christine McVie is missed here. She usually brings strong, bedrock material that anchors Mac albums while Buckingham and Nicks branch off and record the "out there" material. If she had been here, I can't help but think tracks like "Destiny Rules" or "Bleed To Love Her" would have been cut in favor of better songs. Again, I don't know this for sure, but I just can't shake the feeling.

As far as reunion albums go, Say You Will is probably par for the course, and as far as Mac albums go it is below average.

Rating: C+

User Rating: B-


I agree this disc was far from their best -- especially with C. McVie missing -- but I still enjoy much of it even today. What has always amazed me about The Mac is how "less" they are without all three of the principal singers/songwriters involved. There's a special creative connection between them. In my opinion.

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