Yes, yes, yes….Abba are back! First new album for 40 years will drop in November – and amazing state-of-the-art new live show planned for 2022 in London.
The news has stunned the world. Over to the four members of Abba to fill in the details: Benny Anderson, Anni-Frid Lyngstad, Agnetha Fältskog and Björn Kristian Ulvaeus…
“It’s been a while since we made music together. Almost 40 years, actually. We took a break in the spring of 1982 and now we’ve decided it’s time to end it. They say it’s foolhardy to wait more than 40 years between albums, so we’ve recorded a follow-up to “The Visitors”.
“To tell the truth, the main inspiration to record again comes from our involvement in creating the strangest and most spectacular concert you could ever dream of. We’re going to be able to sit back in an audience and watch our digital selves perform our songs on a stage in a custom-built arena in London next spring. Weird and wonderful!
“To all of you who patiently have followed us in some way or another these past decades: Thank you for waiting – it’s time for a new journey to begin.”
Benny Anderson: “We simply call it ‘Voyage’ and we’re truly sailing in uncharted waters. With the help of our younger selves, we travel into the future. It’s not easy to explain but then it hasn’t been done before.
“It’s hard to say what’s been the most joyful thing for me with this project. If it’s the involvement in creating the concert together with everyone or being back in the studio together again after 40 years.
“I think hearing Frida and Agnetha singing again is hard to beat. When you come to the arena you will have the four of us together with an absolutely glorious 10-piece band. And even if not in the flesh, we will be right there, thanks to the work of the creative team and ILM.”
The digital versions of ABBA have been created following weeks and months of motion-capture and performance techniques with the four band members and an 850-strong team from Industrial Light & Magic (ILM), the company founded by George Lucas, in what is the company’s first foray into music.
Anni-Frid Lyngstad: “Those first sessions back in 2018 were such fun and when Benny called and asked if I’d consider singing some more, I jumped at it! And what songs!! My respect and love go out to these exceptionally talented, truly genius songwriters! Such joy it was to work with the group again. I am so happy with what we have made, and I dearly hope our fans feel the same.”
Agnetha Fältskog: “When we got back together in the studio, I had no idea what to expect…But Benny’s recording studio is such a friendly and safe environment, and before I knew it I was really enjoying myself! I can hardly believe that finally, the moment has come to share this with the world!”
Björn Kristian Ulvaeus: “They’re such amazing singers those two, I was completely floored by the way they delivered those songs. They’re true musicians; totally unimpressed by pop star glamour, but still having a great time being creative in a recording studio. The ‘Voyage’ project has injected new life into us in more ways than one.
“So, again, thanks for waiting! We hope to see you in the ‘ABBA Arena’ and yes – see – because we have infused a good deal of our souls into those avatars. It’s not an exaggeration to say that we’re back.”
Four decades since their last studio album The Visitors, ABBA have not only recorded two new songs, “I Still Have Faith In You” and “Don’t Shut Me Down”, that will both feature in the concert, but they have recorded and produced an entire new album. Recorded together at Benny’s studio Riksmixningsverket in Stockholm, Voyage will be released worldwide on November 5th on Capitol Records.
ABBA Voyage will open May 27th 2022 at the ABBA Arena, a state-of-the-art 3,000 capacity arena located at Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park in London. Pre-registration for tickets has opened on abbavoyage.com with tickets on general sale from Tuesday September 7th.
The ABBA Voyage concert is made with the help of Producer Svana Gisla (David Bowie Blackstar/Lazarus, Beyoncé and Jay Z for HBO, Springsteen and I), Producer Ludvig Andersson (And Then We Danced, Yung Lean – “In My Head”, Mamma Mia! Here We Go Again), Director Baillie Walsh (Flashbacks of a Fool, Being James Bond, Springsteen and I), Co-Executive Producer Johan Renck (Spaceman, David Bowie Blackstar/Lazarus, Chernobyl) and Choreographer Wayne McGregor CBE (The Royal Ballet, Company Wayne McGregor, Paris Opera Ballet).
Producer’s Svana Gisla and Ludvig Andersson: “The magic of ABBA and the herculean efforts of this whole magnificent team reaches a long awaited milestone today. To be able to finally share this endeavour with the world is a proud moment for us and we can’t wait to welcome you to our arena in East London, a place where we are so happy to be.”
Baillie Walsh, Director: “I watched ABBA win the Eurovision song contest in 1974, and never did I imagine that 47 years later I would be with them on this extraordinary voyage. Life is weird and wonderful sometimes.”
Wayne McGregor, Choreographer: “Imagine: growing up in the North of England in the 70’s and learning to ballroom, Latin and disco dance to the incredible songs of ABBA. I was eeight and I was totally transported. Fast forward to 2020, being in Sweden and dancing with ABBA – in real life! I was about to be 50 and I was totally transported again. That is the magic of ABBA.
“We have shared many creative and joyful adventures with a bold collaborative team to make the impossible possible for ABBA Voyage: technological wizardry, state of the art immersion and entertainment innovation. And still at its searing heart we simply have new songs, new moves, classic songs, classic moves: ABBA is DANCE and always will be. See you on the dancefloor”.
Sir Lucian Grainge, Chairman & CEO, Universal Music Group: “From the very beginning of my career, and having had the privilege to work with them directly for many years since, it’s been a tremendous joy to be surrounded by ABBA and their music. Their boundless creativity and timeless melodies makes us want to partner with them on everything they do because we know it will be simply great.”
- Tickets for ABBA Voyage are available from 10am Sunday September 5th for fans who have pre-ordered the album from the official ABBA store, and from 10am Monday September 6th for those who have pre-registered. General on sale commences 10am Tuesday September 7th. abbavoyage.com.
With nearly 400 million albums sold worldwide, 17 No. 1 hits and more than 16 million weekly global streams, ABBA are one of the world’s most successful music acts of all time.
Ever since their breakthrough with “Waterloo” back in 1974, ABBA’s music has captured the hearts of people all over the world. Today, the songs they created – written and produced by Benny Andersson and Björn Ulvaeus, and interpreted vocally with passion and commitment by Agnetha Fältskog and Anni-Frid “Frida” Lyngstad – are regarded as an important part of the international music canon.
In the 21st Century, ABBA are more popular than ever. The album “ABBA Gold”, originally released in 1992, recently passed its 1000th week on the UK Album Chart, the first album in history to reach this milestone.
Content using the #ABBA hashtag on TikTok recently reached one billion views, without the catalogue officially being available on the platform. ABBA was inducted into the Rock N’ Roll Hall of Fame in 2010, and ‘Dancing Queen’, one of their most beloved songs, was added to the GRAMMY Hall of Fame in 2015.
Photo Credit: Baillie Walsh
The music video for “I Still Have Faith In You”: Directed by Shynola