Down to only one female vocalist courtesy of the recent arrival of a new baby, Adelaide Fleetwood Mac tribute band Rumours still managed to deliver a rollicking and respectful set chock full of the platinum selling Mac’s greatest hits.
Nanette Van Ruiten did a sterling job singing both Christine McVie and Stevie Nicks’ parts but part of the magic and impact of the original versions of these songs lies in the contrasting style and timbre of those two superstar vocalists and, even with Ian ‘Polly’ Politis’ best efforts, this performance suffered a little from the lack of that crucial ingredient.
The cohesion of the band was really impressive. Rob Pippan’s lead guitar work was, as always, top notch. It’s a safe bet to say that most of Adelaide do not realise what a magnificent guitar slinger we have living amongst us. And it was a surprise to me just how much scope there is for guitars to shine in the slick pop songs of Fleetwood Mac!
Drummer Matt McNamee was on fire – especially on tracks that showcased his stick-work, particularly the two songs that rounded out the show Big Love and Tusk, and he was ably supported by Shaun Duncan on bass, Gary Isaacs on acoustic guitar and harmony vocals, and Rob Vorel on second keyboards.
The range of Fleetwood Mac songs covered in the show was broad – the early Peter Green led Mac were represented by a ripping version of Oh Well, and Stevie Nicks’ solo work was touched upon with Stop Dragging My Heart Around, which provided another opportunity for the band to exercise its full muscle.
For me, the best song of the night was The Chain where the power of the band and the harmonies of the three vocalists all came together to best effect.
The band did run a little overtime and this necessitated cutting some songs from their intended setlist – so no Seven Wonders, nor, sadly, Black Magic Woman.
A couple of annoying minor points that rankled were that Ian ‘Polly’ Politis, the lead vocalist for a number of tunes, had to play and sing his heart out pretty much in darkness for the whole set; and the black cloth draped over the instruments which had already been set up for the next band (and inexplicably placed right at the front of the stage) prevented much of the audience on one side of the room from seeing the rhythm section or the visual Fleetwood Mac rear screen projections at all.
Rumours play at various venues around town during the year and, as they play these well-loved songs with verve and affection, they are certainly worth checking out if you are a Fleetwood Mac fan.
Rating: 3 ½ stars
Rumours: The Fleetwood Mac Show was presented at The German Club, 223 Flinders St., Adelaide on Sunday 18 February 2018.
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