Fleetwood Mac – Beautiful Mirage (Rock Masters RMC006A/B)

Beautiful Mirage (Rock Masters RMC006A/B)

Mid-South Coliseum, Memphis, TN – October 12th, 1982
Disc 1:  Second Hand News, The Chain, Don’t Stop, Dreams, Oh Well, Rhiannon, Brown Eyes, Eyes Of The World, Gypsy, Never Going Back Again
Disc 2:  Landslide, Tusk, Sara, Hold Me, You Make Lovin’ Fun, Go Your Own Way, Blue Letter, Sisters Of The Moon, Songbird

The Mirage tour in 1982 was a declarative statement by the band that, after touring for so long for Tusk in1980 and after all their successful solo albums (especially Stevie Nick’s BellaDonna) that they were still a band despite all of the press to the contrary.  “We’re here to show you we’re still doing it” Buckingham shouts before “Don’t Stop”.  This trek was very short, lasting only two months, and never left the United States.  Strange since the LP was a number one hit.

Beautiful Mirage is another soundboard recording to come from the recently surfaced cache of soundboards that have been making the rounds.  It sounds a generation or two from the master sounding a bit dull and with some slight hiss. 

Thankfully, unlike the Oklahoma City soundboard there is only one cut at the beginning of “Landslide”  and “Sisters Of The Moon” fades out, so all of the announcements and tune ups are present.  This may come from a monitor mix since the audience sounds very far away in the background.  The instruments and vocals are all very well balanced.

This show occurred six weeks into the tour and the band sound very tight.  Lindsey Buckingham especially  plasters “Oh Well” with is wired solos.  Nick’s vocals are a bit ragged at this point.  Her harmonies are a bit off key and she avoids the high notes in “Dreams”. 

She gives her usual emotional performance in “Landslide”, always sounding like she’s about to break down in tears.  Melodrama at its best!  (Some have said this was the day her best friend Robin Anderson died of leukemia on this day).  “Tusk” is fun to hear although the accordion isn’t a good substitute for the marching band.

The concert is very good and enjoyable as is the recording.  Rockmasters isn’t a prolific label but they do produce good titles when they do.  They have utilized several period press photos (no live shots).  They didn’t try to improve the sound any so the tape is left as is.  Of all the Fleetwood Mac soundboards I’ve heard this year this is probably the best and is definitely recommended.

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