Heroes are Hard To Find (1974)


 
1. Heroes are Hard to Find 2. Coming Home 3. Angel 4. Bermuda Triangle 5. Come a Little Bit Closer 6. She's Changing Me 7. Bad Loser 8. Silver Heels 9. Proove Your Love 10.Born Enchanter 11.Safe Harbour

 

The last Fleetwood Mac album to feature Bob Welch is my least favorite of all of the ones with him in the fold. At this stage they were down to a foursome. Guitarist Bob Weston was kicked out after it was discovered he was having an affair with drummer Mick Fleetwood's wife. To be honest, I can't really notice any difference in guitar playing, so I can't really access Weston's overall contribution to the band anyway. So the four members consisted of rhythm section Mick Fleetwood and John McVie and in the spotlight were guitarist Bob Welch and Keyboardist Christine McVie. Welch and McVie had handled the majority of the spotlight for several years now, so this, in itself, was not anything new. Regardless of what the lineup is this time, the songs here just sound mediocre compared to what this band had done in the past.

Welch, in particular, just gets weird. He'd always been quite a bit spacey (literally) in his mannerisms, but it seems that here it overcomes his songs rather than graciously enhancing them. It makes you really question exactly where the "home" is that he's singing (or chanting) to in Coming Home. It sounds like he thinks he's an alien from another planet being called to another galaxy. A bit too much for me, especially on a Fleetwood Mac album. The song itself is not really bad, it's just a tad "too much". The exact same thing can be said about Bermuda Triangle, the title in itself can pretty much describe the overall feel of the song. His style even rubs off on McVie's Bad Loser that I thought for sure was a Welch song until I heard her start to sing.

Speaking of McVie, she sadly comes up short in most places as well. The leadoff song, the title track, sets things off course immediately. It's one of the only non-blues Fleetwood Mac songs, that I know of, that features a horn section. Talk about something being terribly out of place in a Fleetwood Mac song. It simply never really gels.

Fortunately there are a couple of bright spots if you dig hard enough. Both Welch and McVie manage to put out one strong song apiece. For Welch, it's the track Angel, that sounds, well, almost too normal to be a Bob Welch song (not to be confused with the same song title from the album Tusk several years later). McVie's one strong song is the beautiful, majestic Come a Little Bit Closer that rivals her best work on Mystery to Me. Another one of her songs, Prove Your Love is more "good" than "not so good".

A low point for the group. Maybe it was good that the lineup was probably in need of another major shakeup. No one could have predicted at the time, but things were about to spiral into a success that nobody, even the band members themselves, could have possibly predicted.

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