Friday, 1 February 2013

Albums for Life: 58: Fleetwood Mac: Tango in the Night

"Strange how potent cheap music is"

Middle ground, I know, but I have to include this as it was the first CD that I ever owned.
Do you remember cassettes?
How they used to get jammed up and you had to wind them on with a pencil?
How they'd inevitably wrap themselves around the innards of any sound system?
25 years ago Di was doing a dancing job in Holland and came back with presents: a 'boogie box' CD player (then unavailable in Blighty) and one CD; 'Tango in the Night'. At the time I think that there were only about 8 choices, which included Dire Straights, Michael Jackson and some Madonna nonsense.
I reluctantly hit 'play' and was flabbergasted by the quality; digital sound was the death knell to my solvency; the start of my longstanding overdraft. Since that fateful day I've been unable to resist adding to the collection (and debt) weekly.

This album saw the transition of Fleetwood Mac from West Coast rock dudes to global pop stars.
The guitar based grooves of the stupendous 'Rumours' were replaced with ingeniously layered guitars, infectious synth hooks and melodies to die for. This showcased the genius of Lindsey Buckingham and was his final gift to the band before he went solo in the late 80s. Buckingham came on like Todd Rundgren's little brother with a 3 minute attention span; his writing, singing, playing and production skills were stage centre and he played a blinder before taking that early bath.
The album's success was responsible for giving the green light to much back combed big hair and/or baseball cap wearing middle aged men; the soundtrack within many a Porsche 911 I'm sure.
Here are the opening three tracks in order.
I believe it's what Noel Coward would have referred to as 'cheap music'...


  1. Now this is a strange one. I positively detested this when it cam out (pure indie snobbery as if they had been new and Scottish I'd have lapped it up)
    Wisdom comes with age to the point where I was seriously thinking of buying it

  2. There's a really good value box set 'The Chain' that works as an overview of their career; their early Peter Green stuff (Albatross et al) is surprisingly good.
    It also has the best tracks from this album...

    1. worth it now that it's haf the price it was when i bought it :(

  3. Can't deny their knack with melodies but find the texture of these off-putting.
    I'm more partial to the Peter Green era myself.

  4. The only band I would have wanted to join. Love the Mac. Always thought TUSK was the better album, especially after Rumours came out. Where Lindsey really went bonkers. And don't even get me on to the Time album (bet you haven't even HEARD of that one!!)