Visitors [Bonus Tracks]

Visitors [Bonus Tracks]


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Because it turned out to be the group's final full-length recording and was a relative commercial disappointment, ABBA's eighth album, The Visitors, tends to be viewed as an artistic failure as well. It would be more accurate to see it as a record that demonstrates the reasons for the group's breakup, in the sense that it reflects both the bandmembers' emotional disaffection and the increased musical ambitions of songwriters Benny Andersson and Bjorn Ulvaeus, ambitions that would see them moving on to writing stage musicals. The elegiac, regretful, and occasionally paranoiac tones of the music are inescapable. The title song, though it has since been revealed to concern (vaguely) Soviet dissidents, is a study in Kafkaesque mental breakdown, even as its music recalls later-period Beatles. "When All Is Said and Done" (a pointed title) and "One of Us" are both plaintive songs of romantic discord. Other songs employ subject matter new to ABBA, from a parent's wistful reflection on a child's growing up, "Slipping Through My Fingers," to the comic novelty "Two for the Price of One." The 2001 reissue, which tacks on four singles tracks that drew the curtain on the band's career in 1982, measurably improves the album. Of particular note is "The Day Before You Came," a striking story-song in which a woman reviews the mundane state of her life prior to the onset of (one presumes) a life-changing romance. It shows that Andersson had been listening closely to the British synth pop movement, particularly Yaz, and that Ulvaeus had an affection for the Beatles' "She's Leaving Home." It may have been more cinematic than theatrical, but it pointed a direction for the songwriters that took them well beyond ABBA. In some ways, the group's final recordings were their most interesting, even if they were not the most popular.

Product Details

Release Date: 12/01/1998
Label: Polygram Uk
UPC: 0731454995726
catalogNumber: 549957

Album Credits

Performance Credits

ABBA   Primary Artist
Janne Schaffer   Acoustic Guitar,Electric Guitar
Frida   Vocals
Benny Andersson   Synthesizer,Keyboards,Vocals
Ola Brunkert   Drums
Agnetha Fältskog   Vocals
Rutger Gunnarsson   Bass
Janne Kling   Clarinet,Flute
Per Lindvall   Drums
Ake Sundqvist   Percussion
Three Boys   Mandolin
Björn Ulvaeus   Acoustic Guitar,Vocals
Lasse Wellander   Acoustic Guitar,Electric Guitar

Technical Credits

Lars-Erik Larsson   Cover Photo
Dennis Brown   Composer
Benny Andersson   Composer,Producer,Product Development
Agnetha Fältskog   Composer
Michael B. Tretow   Engineer
Björn Ulvaeus   Composer,Producer
Rune Soderqvist   Art Direction
Anni-Frid Lyngstad   Composer
Carl Magnus Palm   Liner Notes

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