“Everybody in the band was personally at their worst...by the time we did Tango in the Night, everybody was leading their lives in a way that they would not be too proud of today.” A rare example of an internationally-assembled global pop machine in the pre-internet age, Fleetwood Mac have been responsible for some of the biggest and best pop songs of the 1970s and 80s, embracing new styles and methods of production and distilling them to their essence. More recently, we’ve seen their records go from low-key hipster vanguard in the Hollerboard era, to literally inspiring Haim’s entire sound. And now every time I’m in a record store there’s some NYU student buying Rumours (it could be worse!). Despite this, Tango In The Night STILL contains gems that for whatever reason, never got played out. Maybe people never got past the singles? It’s their second best-selling album to date (after Rumours), but in hindsight, probably their best. Lindsay Buckingham was reluctant to contribute, convinced he should be focusing his efforts toward a solo career, and Stevie Nicks was generally, uhh… pre-occupied around the time of these sessions, only contributing to a measly three tracks, and aside from “Seven Wonders,” they’re pretty forgettable compared to behemoths like “Gypsy” and “Sara.” With Stevie on the bench, Christine McVie gets to really shine, and she’s responsible for the record’s four best songs: “Isn’t It Midnight” is peak coked-up Corvette night drive music, “Mystified” is a slow, freewheeling blues-tinged number reminiscent of some of the better Tusk album cuts, and enough has already been said elsewhere about “Little Lies” and “Everywhere,” easy contenders for the two best songs in the band’s entire oeuvre. “Caroline,” “You And I, Pt II” and “Family Man” have all aged pretty well too. And then there’s the Rousseauian artwork, quite possibly the real miracle of this whole unlikely package. How they didn’t end up with something like this or this for their record sleeve in April of coked-the-fuck-up 1987 is just totally beyond me. It’s the perfect visualization of the DX7 arp that opens “Everywhere,” sorta bland yet alluring enough to tickle my curiosity as a kid and make this reissue worth buying again in my thirties. Completely remastered 30th anniversary pressing on 180g black vinyl, recommended.
- 180g vinyl pressing
- remastered audio
- printed inner sleeve w/ full album lyrics
- limited edition
- music label: Warner Bros. 2017
reviewed by carparts, bottles & cutlery 08/2018