By John Tobler
Arguably the world's most famed Swedes, ABBA--Anni-Frid, Bjorn, Benny, and Agnetha--delighted (or disgusted) song listeners with their too-perfect, chirpy harmonies within the overdue '70s and early '80s. This totally licensed biography enhances their maximum hits CD, ABBA GOLD, and includes over 250 images and a whole discography.
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Extra info for Abba Gold: The Complete Story
Cashbox magazine obviously felt it was going to be a smash hit, when their reviewer wrote "ABBA is the perfect example of what European pop music is all about - the vocals are clean and instantly dominant, the melodies catchy and generously spiced with good pop hooks. " The fact that many Americans still seem to have ignored 'Greatest Hits' is one of the most puzzling chapters in the group's history, but despite American reservations, world sales of the album had already exceeded five million copies by the end of 1976.
While 'Bang-A-Boomerang' is certainly a very typical Eurovision Song Contest title, the quality of the song was rather superior to routine Eurovision fodder. Unfortunately, the Polar Music team were unsuccessful with their entry on this occasion, although Svenne & Lotta enjoyed a sizeable Scandinavian hit when they issued the song as a single. 42 April 4th, 1975 I DO, I DO, I DO, I DO, I DO/ROCK ME (Epic EPC 3229) How not to follow a flop... " In comparison with what had already been heard from ABBA, this single was obviously something of a novelty, with its smooth big band sound redolent of the music popular during the Second World War years nearly a generation earlier.
The only reservations concern the lyrics, on which Stig Anderson collaborated with Björn and Benny: at times, especially at the start of the song, they seem awkward, which may have been the reason for its relegation to the В side. 'So Long', by contrast, although perfectly adequate lyrically, is possibly a little too furious in tempo for their 1974 audience. Starting with an instrumental crescendo, which owes far more to hard rock than pop, it seems to fall between two stools. Nevertheless, if either side had been released to an open-minded public, things might have been different, as both sides are instrumentally superb, a particular highlight being the guitar playing on 'I've Been Waiting For You', which is highly reminiscent of George Harrison's playing on his charttopping classic, 'My Sweet Lord'.