ALBUM REVIEW: Stevie Nicks, Street Angel

Stevie Nicks Street Angel 1994★★★
Street Angel – Stevie Nicks
Modern Records/Atlantic
Running time: 57:34, 13 tracks

If Steve Nicks’ new album is an indication, she made a good move severing her ties with Fleetwood Mac. Street Angel is Nicks’ best solo album in a decade.

For starters, she’s abandoned the mystical lyrics that often made interpreting her work, both as a soloist and as a member of Fleetwood Mac, a maddening, often fruitless effort. She’s also ditched the intense seriousness that made her 1989 album The Other Side of the Mirror such a depressing listen.

On Street Angel, Nicks is clear about what she’s singing about, and that’s love. And often, it’s not the unrequited type. Why, Nicks sounds downright cheerful singing such upbeat lyrics as those in the tuneful “Blue Denim” and “Maybe Love Will Change Your Mind.”

Even when a certain sadness creeps into the lyrics, as it does on the country-tinged “Rose Garden” and the more rocking “Kick It,” the power and conviction in Nicks’ voice tells you she’s not going to be a victim any longer.

On Street Angel, Nicks also has abandoned the cheesy synthesizers that filled her recent solo efforts and replaced them with guitars. They perfectly complement Nicks’ dusky voice, which is at home on both the rockers and the ballads, particularly the stand-out title track.

Nicks’ only misstep is an utterly soulless rendition of Bob Dylan’s “Just Like a Woman.” Rather than slavishly repeat Dylan’s version, she would have done better to bring her own style to the song. Dylan also appears on the track, but his guitar and harmonica are not distinguished.

New Jersey Record / July 10, 1994

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