For a good part of the past 40 years, Lindsey Buckingham has had to split his time between Fleetwood Mac and a solo career. In some cases – like with the 2003 Mac album Say You Will – the gigs collided, as the singer, songwriter, guitarist and producer gave up material earmarked for his own records for the betterment of band LPs.

But since his 2018 ousting from the group (and a subsequent heart attack), Buckingham has seemingly had more time on his hands to work on solo music. In some ways, these recent changes reflect a new start, if the eponymous title of his seventh album is any indication. But don't look for an extreme change in musical direction here: Lindsey Buckingham is more of the same oddball pop he's delivered since his former bandmates let him go wild on 1979's Tusk.

Starting with the skittering "Scream," the songs throughout are often spare, deceivingly uplifting and not unlike his contributions to Fleetwood Mac's run of classic records during the '70s and '80s. There are ping-ponging vocal harmonies ("I Don't Mind"), doo-wop-inspired ballads ("Blind Love"), synth-aided throwbacks that recall his 1981 solo debut Law and Order ("Blue Light") and wistful odes to California ("Santa Rosa").

Buckingham even addresses his old bandmates in "On the Wrong Side": "Every now and then I fall / Every now and then I rise / When my back's against the wall / It's just sometimes I compromise ... / Time is rolling down the road / Love goes riding in a hearse / We were young, and now we're old." It's easy to read similar sentiments in "Swan Song."

There's a sense of new freedom on Lindsey Buckingham that was missing from 2011's Seeds We Sow and the 2017 collaboration record Lindsey Buckingham/Christine McVie that was supposed to be a Fleetwood Mac album before Stevie Nicks went her own way. Working by himself now, Buckingham doesn't have to rein in any of his more outre impulses, which could use some of Fleetwood Mac's commercial shrewdness at times. But his liberation here is mostly exhilarating.

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There have been more than 40 of these outside projects, which deepen and add to the band's legacy.

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