Fleetwood Mac Albums Ranked

Fleetwood Mac started as a blues group that paid tribute to the American bluesmen they loved. Fronted by drummer Mick Fleetwood and bassist John McVie, the band went through several lineup changes over the years before two Los Angeles singer-songwriters, Lindsey Buckingham and Stevie Nicks, joined in 1975 and made Fleetwood Mac one of the biggest bands on the planet. For the next dozen years, they dominated the charts with their blend of classic rock and SoCal pop. Their 1977 blockbuster ‘Rumours’ remains one of the best and bestselling albums ever made, a breakup record informed by real-life tension among the band’s five members (singer-songwriter Christine McVie rounded out the group). Buckingham and Nicks’ solo careers eventually led to the split of the classic lineup, although they’ve occasionally reunited over the years for tours and records. Here are all of Fleetwood Mac’s albums ranked.

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17. Time (1995)

“THE most underrated FM album. Some of Christine McVie’s best compositions are on this album which is often way too overlooked. Also on this album is some writing, vocal and guitar work of ex-Traffic member Dave Mason. His songs on here should have been hits along with McVie’s work. Bekka Bramlett’s vocals are simply amazing on almost every song and blend very nicely with those of axe man Billy Burnette and Mason. Holding down the rhythm section of course is the brilliant work of bassist John McVie and drummer Mick Fleetwood. Any real Mac fan should own a copy of this album. It’s just as good as anything they have done.”

16. Future Games (1971)

“This album reflects the changes taking place within F.M. pre Buckingham & Nicks. Well worth a listen if you are not familiar with some of their earlier stuff! Maybe this is not quite as strong as the Buckingham/Nicks era but some good listening available here!”

15. Kiln House (1970)

“The best track on this old Fleetwood Mac is “Station Man” with its infectious guitar riff. The rest of the album is pretty darn good and has actually gotten better with the passage of time. By the time this was recorded, Peter Green had departed taking with him a blues accent. What is left behind is a slightly country-sounding, early rock and roll, slightly rockabilly sound. Station Man itself is a reason to get this record, and the rest is also good listening.”

14. Behind the Mask (1990)

“I like Fleet Wood Mac’s melodies. A little rockabilly,no Buckingham, we got Nicks. I’m listening to it while writing this review. Love is dangerous playing now,great tune! If you’re a Mac fan like me you won’t be disappointed and will be a welcome addition to your collection. Enjoy!!!”

13. Penguin (1973)

“Penguin is the first Fleetwood Mac album after Danny Kirwan was let go during the Bare Trees tour. Replacing him was Bob Weston formerly of Savoy Brown. The album features one of my favorite songs from this band called Did I Ever Love You which features steel drums that add a really interesting touch to the song.”

12. Mr. Wonderful (1968)

“A stellar and very well-received early Fleetwood Mac album indeed. Anything with Peter Green on it is worth hearing and he is at a peak here. His phrasing, his tone, his choice of notes…superb! Alas, the dullness of the repetitive Elmore James imitations gets wearying at times but if you focus on Peter Green’s material you will be in the presence of England’s blues guitar Guru, the equivalent of their Mike Bloomfield, and a man so on the money even B.B. King admired him.”

11. Bare Trees (1972)

“I had this on tape in college in the early 1970s. After a few times listening and becoming reacquainted with this version of the band, I think this may be my favorite album. I rank Bare Trees right up there with Future Games and Kiln House. This was my favorite era of Fleetwood Mac. The two lead guitars provided by Danny Kirwan and Bob Welch are outstanding. Sometimes it reminds me of Wishbone Ash. For anyone not familiar with pre-Buckingham/Nicks Fleetwood Mack, I heartily recommend Bare Trees.”

10. Say You Will (2003)

“Stevie Nicks’ contributions to this cd are AMAZING. Illume, Thrown Down, Goodbye Baby, Destiny Rules, Everybody Finds Out, Smile At You are all worth the price of admission…oddly, Say You Will is the first time since Tusk that I enjoyed Lindsey’s songs…Miranda, Bleed to Love Her, Red Rover are all great tunes….Say Goodbye is his best song since Rumours. If Lindsey hadn’t once again gone down the rabbit hole (his usual overproduction) with songs like Come & Murrow, this cd would have been my new favorite from the Mac.”

9. Then Play On (1968)

“It just seems to flow from pure psychedelia to badass blues so seamlessly. The first track ‘Coming Your Way’ sounds like a Santana song, it could easily have been on Abraxas (note that this came out before Abraxas). Then the Jefferson Airplane sounding ‘When You Say’. Then on to the blues with ‘Show Biz-Blues’. Side 2 is even better, meandering from song to song, but there are no gaps between the songs, it just flows along like you’re bobbing along a river. A cool cool river.”

8. Mystery to Me (1973)

“One of the best albums of the 70’s or any other period in music. The Bob Welch era of Fleetwood Mac was as good or better than the Buckingham – Nicks group of album releases. Bob should have gotten into the Rock and Roll HOF with the rest of the various members.”

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7. Mirage (1982)

“This has two of the finest FM songs ever. Although extrapolated by the press and following Rumors this work is honest if not seminal. If Gypsy had never been recorded I would not be as happy as I am today.

The interesting thing to me is that this is a showcase for musicians, poets, and producers. Pop music has many forgettable songs, some on this album. This is a work of art from artists who made forest fires from sparks. There are a few hot spots left to ignite memories of the past and future.”

6. Heroes Are Hard to Find (1974)

“Although a lesser known album, I always liked Bob Welch with this group and this represents this lineup’s crowning achievement with great songs, and crisp musicianship. I think this was the only album to feature Christine McVie along with Stevie Nicks. I recall reading at the time of release that Stevie had trouble with the vocal range required of Bob Welch’s compositions, leading in part to his departure.”

5. Peter Green’s Fleetwood Mac (1968)

“Holy crap this album sounds good. I’ve been meaning to get this album for awhile now and I’ve just been keeping it in my saved for later cart. I noticed there was only 1 item left of this and I grabbed while it was still available. I always heard great things about Music on Vinyl and was pleasantly surprised to see that they pressed this reissue. I wish amazon actually put accurate listings on items cause I was u see the impression this was the Blue Horizon reissue which came out in 2014. Sometimes though you get something better than what was expected but sometimes not.”

4. Tango in the Night (1987)

“This was an outstanding album which saw Fleewood Mac return to their best despite their personal difficulties and major differences within ths band. Tracks like Seven Wonders and Little Lies rank among the very best Fleetwood Mac songs, but even lesser known tracks such as Welcome To The Room Sara and When I See You Again are sensitive and beautifully crafted and provide balance to the album. The bonus tracks are a must-listen for fans, especially the paired-down early cut of Seven Wonders which is arguably even better than the final version.”

3. Fleetwood Mac (1975)

“I’ve been playing last year’s “Lindsey Buckingham / Christine McVie” pretty much non-stop since it came out. Seeing Buckingham McVie on their tour just made me want more from them. This new, deluxe version of 1975’s “Fleetwood Mac” delivers! This was worth the price just for the early versions of Ms. McVie’s “Over My Head”, “Say You Love Me” and “Sugar Daddy”. Her duet with Mr. Buckingham, “World Turning” is dynamite in its early take. The live songs are sheer delight. I’m thrilled to have these versions of “Station Man”, “Spare Me A Little Of Your Love”. “Why” and “Hypnotized” with Mr. Buckingham and Ms. Nicks in the fold.”

2. Tusk (1979)

“I would reccomend this album to anybody, not only fantastic value but I can honestly say there is not a bad song on either c/d.

They have made some great albums over the years but this one is my personal favourite. No wonder the band thanked Lindsay Buckingham for it , his production of Tusk puts him up there with the very best producers and as a guitar player he is brimming with talent. I think that when Lindsay and Stevie joined the band it turned out to be a lottery win for the other three that would be hard to estimate the scale of.”

1. Rumours (1977)

“Reviewing such icons, such pillars of popular music, is almost not even worth it. To the end I’ll keep it short and say that this album is incredible. It belongs high on the list of best and most influential rock albums of all time. If you’ve never listened to Fleetwood Mac before then you owe it to yourself to give this album a go. You will recognize many of the songs just from movies and TV and will be surprised at how far reaching the influence this album has had.”