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Thread: New music from ABBA

  1. #1
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    New music from ABBA

    Any ABBA fans here? A new album is coming this fall, and new music videos:




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    Member since March 2004 mozo-pg's Avatar
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    Absolute fan of the classic Abba here, but these two tracks did not connect whatsoever. I guess as far as possibilities of reforming was concerned, it was now or never.

    At their best, Andersson/Ulvaeus was one of the greatest songwriting teams ever out of Scandinavia. They were refined and eclectic, creative beyond immediate belief in arrangements and production and with a deepness to their emotional scent which spoke to all levels and ages of listeners. Growing up with them in a time of incessant road-traveling holiday culture and a "liberated" generation of parents, Abba's music was everywhere and all over. I've got mixed feelings about this reunion thing in itself, though.

    I still consider "Dancing Queen" one of the very few actually perfect compositions in pop/rock music overall. I can still listen to it and be amazed at the sheer richness of dynamic in it, especially in terms of varying harmonics. It's like a line of thought fulfilled into its sole logical unity and coherence. And it's not even my fave Abba tune.
    Last edited by Scrotum Scissor; 09-03-2021 at 03:40 AM.
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    Member thedunno's Avatar
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    I like me some ABBA as well but those new tunes sound a bit too over familiar. Like its a rework of some older tunes put together into a new song.

  5. #5
    I always liked the idea that they never did a reunion. They were offered stupid amounts of money, I think at one something like a half a billion dollars, and they always said no. There was someting "special", I guess about that, like that was part of their legacy, they never got back together. So this had better be one hell of a record, otherwise, I'm gonna be really disappointed!

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    ^^^ Same. The old tunes are considered as great as they are in part because humanity has collectively wrapped 40 years of memories into the melodies and lyrics. New songs, no matter how "good" will lack that, and they will seem banal in comparison.

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    Member moecurlythanu's Avatar
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    The 2nd song sounds like it could have been from their earlier incarnation. The first, no so much, as it's somewhat more mature, less glib and bouncy. I hated their music back in the day, but have come to really enjoy it. I'll probably get this new one, and it can sit alongside the 2 CD anthology I already own.
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    From Epic Prog, duh The_Lurker's Avatar
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    Big Abba fan and love the two new tunes. "I Still Have Faith in You" is reminiscent of one of their songwriting styles ("I Have a Dream," "Thank You for the Music," "Should I Laugh or Cry," etc.) while "Don't Shut Me Down" is the more poppy, harmony-driven type of song with which they had most of their hits.

    They sound like Abba songs, which is what I was hoping for, as well as for time to have been kind to Frida and Agnetha (which it has been...the solo vocals show some signs of their age but the great duet harmonies are still there).
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    Man of repute progmatist's Avatar
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    The new music videos were made with avatars of themselves, using motion capture. As if we care they all look older. Don't we all?
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    Member Koreabruce's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by progmatist View Post
    The new music videos were made with avatars of themselves, using motion capture. As if we care they all look older. Don't we all?
    Well, yes. Some might view the endeavor as disingenuous given how each member actually looks now - understandably since they're all over 70. However, I can also understand the thinking behind going out as ABBAtars. The music of Abba has a universal appeal; it's a deep collection of well-written, catchy, highly memorable, feel-good pop songs. For many people, that music is inextricably linked with the youthful images of the four members who recorded and performed it. They stopped touring in the early 80s when they were all still in their early 30s, and that is really the last image of them that most people have. Since the technology exists to give the public that same frozen-in-time image 40 years later, the band is only too happy to comply. Over the intervening years, there had been many calls for the group to re-form and tour, and they had always said it was never to happen due to the members' ages and conflicting interests and schedules. It is likely that at least part of what motivated their change of heart on this issue was so that they could give people a little joy and hope after nearly two tumultuous years of the COVID-19 pandemic. I say good for them, and good for those who are able to take in that experience!

    I think the songs are fine, especially "I Still Have Faith in You." Nothing earth-shattering, but still very much ABBA.

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    Do I like it? Yes, I do.

    I know loving Abba wasn't great for your rock-credability in those days, so, I didn't care for their music in those days, but nowadays I seem to like them, though I only have a couple of albums, my dad found by the thrash.
    I suppose I like a lot of music, my rock-side would frown upon, like Udo Jrgens, whose music I even liked when I was something like 13 years of age.

  13. #13
    Is there another example of a high-profile band reforming after (nearly) 40 years with the original line-up ?

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    I think a lot of fans assumed an album would be forthcoming, when the new tracks that were announced for release way back didn't materialise.

    I personally feel at the moment that 'I Still Have Faith In You' is very much the better of the two. (And Frida's voice here has a very Karen Carpenter-esque quality, I think.) The hook seems much stronger.

    I will not attempt to place either track alongside their earlier body of work, a fools' errand IMHO. But they certainly don't disgrace their legacy.
    Last edited by JJ88; 09-04-2021 at 02:33 PM.

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    Don't shut me down sounds like an Ace of Base leftover, sorta....

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    Member moecurlythanu's Avatar
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    Member Mythos's Avatar
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    Not sure which is worse news: ABBA reforming or Ed Asner passing away...

  18. #18
    Member moecurlythanu's Avatar
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    The last 40 years, I suppose.

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  19. #19
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    Excellent - "I Still Have Faith in You" - love it - wasn't expecting something this good. I think it is as good as their best material. The other song is lesser but still ok. Happy to see this reunion. I wish/hope they do a blend of 'younger' to 'current' looking ABBAtars - I know the image we all have of the band is their youth and concerts are part escapism but I think we can all handle the fact that we do all age and I think the show could be all the better and have more emotional impact if they acknowledge that. Maybe with that particular song "I Still Have Faith in You" - have that sung by ABBA as they are now.

    I'll probably see Arrival (ABBA cover band w/ Lalle Larsson) in March - I hope they play the new tune.

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    never was a fan, but those new songs definitely capture the old ABBA.
    i was surprised because i thought they were bitterly divorced and would never work together again.
    but then money talks. with all the crap music out today, i hope this reunion goes off big.
    good luck to them!

  21. #21
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    They were offered a billion to reunite, and turned it down. So I don't think this new move was financially motivated.

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    Bjorn and Benny have worked together a lot since the ABBA split- most obviously on the Chess musical- and ISTR all four attending the premiere of that Mamma Mia movie, together? I could be wrong. (No, I haven't watched that and have no plans to.)

    The hologram stuff is all a bit daft for me, but I remember Bjorn ruling out live concerts on the basis that he'd rather people remembered them as they were. And, well, this does do that...I guess! Really they never toured that much even at the time, compared to a lot of bands.

  23. #23
    Member moecurlythanu's Avatar
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    I've listened to "I Still Have Faith In You" every day since release. Just sublime.
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  24. #24
    Quote Originally Posted by JJ88 View Post
    The hologram stuff is all a bit daft for me, but I remember Bjorn ruling out live concerts on the basis that he'd rather people remembered them as they were. And, well, this does do that...I guess! Really they never toured that much even at the time, compared to a lot of bands.
    This kinda answers the big question..."Why not just tour like a normal band?" I'm sure with today's technology the new shows will be outstanding...but seriously...holograms?? I for one can't get to England for the shows and don't really care what the band looks like these days anyway. Granted getting into those skin tight outfits they used to wear could be a little difficult...and embarrassing...LOL. I think Bjorn is being a bit vain...but YMMV.

    As to the new tunes..."I Still Have Faith In You" is nice but a little bland. But I really like "Don't Shut Me Down".
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  25. #25
    随缘 SRS's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by moecurlythanu View Post
    I've listened to "I Still Have Faith In You" every day since release. Just sublime.
    agree and same for me - I was surprised how strongly I connected with it. Frida sounds SO good here - this isn't an easy song to sing and her now more mature sounding voice is perfect.
    Sometimes I hear people say things about how they don't write songs the way they used to anymore - well they just did!

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