Here’s some revisionist history for you: Has anyone noticed that Stevie Nicks has a really annoying singing voice? I find it to be the stuff of washed up rock stars’ wet dreams, when 70’s heroes like Meatloaf thought they had a fighting chance in the 90’s by softening their style to the kind of soppy mush that you could only properly consume with a spoon. Stevie Nicks’s devilish warble has made me uncontrollable wince for every single song she’s released since her time with Fleetwood Mac. It reminds me of the lite-rock radio station I was forced to listen to while my mom drove me to school from Pre-K all the way up to sophomore year of High School.
So basically my enjoyment of Stevie Nicks’s newest album, In Your Dreams, is a constant struggle between that voice I find so maddening and the surprisingly catchy melodies Nicks consistently writes. But then, like the best of storylines (Halo, The Twilight Saga) a third party comes in and knocks me right on my ass, that being Nicks’s penchant for positively dreadful lyrics. “White Sargossa Sea” tells a miserable tale of a couple whose sole interesting quality is that “The only thing they did together / Was to make love,” there’s a good ol’ vampire pander for the cheap seats in “Moonlight (A Vampire’s Dream)” and Nicks fails hilariously to make Mardi Gras sound like a wedding ceremony in “New Orleans”. The lyrics seem to get progressively worse as In Your Dreams continues. The album hits a new high (see: low) in “May Be the One” with the line, “You may be the one / But you’ll never be The One,” which I can only see making sense if it were sung to either Neo or Jet Li. But then last track “Cheaper Than Free” makes all the competition its bitch, as it is a wellspring of laughably awful phrasing. If you were considering getting In Your Dreams, let these last choice lines from “Cheaper Than Free” be a warning to you of what lies in store:
“What’s cheaper than free? / You and me”
“What’s faster than a fast car? / A heart”
“What’s better than high fashion? / High passion”