Arrival (ABBA album)

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Arrival
ABBA - Arrival.png
Studio album by ABBA
Released11 October 1976
Recorded4 August 1975 – 18 September 1976
StudioMetronome Studios, Stockholm
GenrePop, euro disco
Length33:16
LabelPolar
Producer
ABBA chronology
Greatest Hits
(1975)
Arrival
(1976)
ABBA: The Album
(1977)
Alternative cover
French edition using the inner sleeve image
French edition using the inner sleeve image
Singles from Arrival
  1. "Dancing Queen"
    Released: 16 August 1976 (Sweden), 21 August 1976 (UK), 12 November 1976 (US)
  2. "Money, Money, Money"
    Released: 1 November 1976
  3. "That's Me"
    Released: 1977 (Japan only)
  4. "Knowing Me, Knowing You"
    Released: 14 February 1977

Arrival is the fourth studio album by the Swedish pop group ABBA. It was originally released in Sweden on 11 October 1976 by Polar Records. Recording sessions began in August 1975 and continued until September 1976 at Metronome and Glen studios in Stockholm, Sweden. It became one of ABBA's most successful albums to date, producing three of their biggest hits: "Dancing Queen," "Money, Money, Money" and "Knowing Me, Knowing You." Released as a single earlier the same year (in March 1976), the track "Fernando" did not appear on Arrival upon its original release in October 1976, but it was included on the Australian and New Zealand versions of the album. Arrival was the best-selling album of 1977 in the United Kingdom and was certified gold by the Recording Industry Association of America.[1]

The album was first released on compact disc (CD) in 1984 and then re-issued in digitally remastered form a total of four times; first in 1997, then in 2001, 2005 as part of The Complete Studio Recordings box set, and again in 2006 (as a special Deluxe Edition).

Background[edit]

By the time ABBA began working on their fourth album in August 1975, they had achieved a modest level of success around the world. It was with Arrival however, that they would achieve global superstardom. The first song to enter the studio was a track called "Boogaloo" on 4 August. Taking inspiration from the current disco sound (and in particular George McCrae's "Rock Your Baby"), the backing track was laid down.[2] The group knew that they had something big on their hands, as member Agnetha Fältskog remarked: "We knew immediately it was going to be massive." With re-written lyrics, the song became known as "Dancing Queen," and would go on to be ABBA's biggest ever hit. Work on the song continued intermittently until December 1975 as the group's activities were increasing in the latter half of the year as they saw a sudden surge in popularity in the United Kingdom and Australia. During this time they also recorded a song (in Swedish) for member Anni-Frid Lyngstad's solo album, "Fernando." In March 1976, with "Fernando" re-written with English lyrics, it was released as an ABBA single, becoming the group's biggest hit to date - hitting No.1 in many countries, including a 14-week stay at No.1 in Australia.[1] Also around this time their Greatest Hits album was selling in huge numbers, becoming the biggest-selling album of the year in the UK. In the midst of this success, the group finally found time to return to the studio in late March. The next song they began working on was "Knowing Me, Knowing You," which was to become yet another major hit worldwide. Member Benny Andersson has said that it is "one of our five best recordings."[2]

By the end of April two other songs had been laid down: "That's Me" and "Why Did It Have to Be Me." The latter was reworked into "Happy Hawaii" before ultimately arriving back at its original title with completely different lyrics and member Björn Ulvaeus on lead vocals as opposed to Faltskog and Lyngstad ("Happy Hawaii" would later be released as a B-side). A similar situation occurred with the next recording when a song entitled "Money, Money, Money" became "Gypsy Girl" and then back to its original title. "Money, Money, Money" would also be released as a single and become a major hit some months after the album's eventual release.[2]

In June 1976, a TV special dedicated to the group (entitled ABBA-dabba-dooo!!) was filmed. Around the same time they recorded a song called "When I Kissed the Teacher," which would become the opening track on their new album. Late July saw the next two tracks, "Tiger" and "Dum Dum Diddle" recorded. Considered by biographer Carl Magnus Palm as the "complete antithesis" of each other, the former being a hard rocker against the pure pop of the latter, both Lyngstad and Ulvaeus have expressed dissatisfaction with "Dum Dum Diddle," with Ulvaeus admitting that it was a nonsense lyric he'd come up with in desperation.[3] The next song to be recorded was "My Love My Life." Originally titled "Monsieur Monsieur" and more upbeat, the song soon became a lush ballad with backing harmonies inspired by 10cc's hit "I'm Not In Love."[2]

The final track to be recorded was an instrumental piece entitled "Ode to Dalecarlia." Featuring Andersson prominently on keyboards, the track was renamed "Arrival" - a word that had already been decided as the title of their new album. By September 1976 work on the album was finished just as "Dancing Queen" was topping the charts all over the world. The album cover shots were taken of the group posing in and out of a Bell 47 helicopter at the Barkarby Airport, northwest of Stockholm.[2] The now-renowned "mirrored-B" copyrighted ABBA logo, designed by Rune Söderqvist in 1976 — and said to have been inspired by Andersson — was also premiered on the album cover. Arrival was released on 11 October 1976.

Critical reception[edit]

Professional ratings
Review scores
SourceRating
AllMusic4.5/5 stars[4]
Pitchfork8.6/10[5]
Robert ChristgauC[6]

In a contemporary review for Rolling Stone, music critic Ken Tucker panned Arrival as "Muzak mesmerizing in its modality" and wrote, "By reducing their already vapid lyrics to utter irrelevance, lead singers Anni-Frid Lyngstad and Agnetha Fältskog are liberated to natter on in their shrill voices without regard to emotion or expression."[7] Robert Christgau of The Village Voice gave the album a "C"[6] indicating "a record of clear professionalism or barely discernible inspiration, but not both."[8]

In a review upon the album's 2001 reissue by Universal Records, Allmusic editor Bruce Eder gave the album four-and-a-half out of five stars and found the material "brilliant." He complimented the reissue's "upgraded sound," as well as "those dramatic musical effects that this group played for maximum effect, which gave their music a raw power that their detractors usually overlooked; in the new edition, it's impossible to ignore."[9] In The New Rolling Stone Album Guide (2004), music journalist Arion Berger gave Arrival four out of five stars and recommended its Universal reissue to consumers.[10]

The album became a major seller all over the world,[11] becoming the top-selling album of 1977 in both the UK and West Germany for example.[12][13] It housed three of ABBA's biggest hits; "Dancing Queen," "Money Money Money" and "Knowing Me Knowing You," and in some territories a fourth with the inclusion of "Fernando" (which in most markets had featured on their earlier Greatest Hits album). "That's Me" was released as a single in Japan only.

The album was included in Robert Dimery's 1001 Albums You Must Hear Before You Die. Arrival re-entered the UK album charts at #94 for the week of August 3 2018, for the first time since 1979.[14]

Track listing[edit]

All tracks written by Benny Andersson and Björn Ulvaeus except where noted.

Side one
No.TitleWriter(s)Length
1."When I Kissed the Teacher" 3:00
2."Dancing Queen"
3:50
3."My Love, My Life"
  • Andersson
  • Anderson
  • Ulvaeus
3:52
4."Dum Dum Diddle" 2:50
5."Knowing Me, Knowing You"
  • Andersson
  • Anderson
  • Ulvaeus
4:02
Side two
No.TitleWriter(s)Length
1."Money, Money, Money" 3:05
2."That's Me"
  • Andersson
  • Anderson
  • Ulvaeus
3:15
3."Why Did It Have to Be Me?"
  • Andersson
  • Anderson
  • Ulvaeus
3:20
4."Tiger" 2:55
5."Arrival" 3:00
Total length:33:16

Notes:

  • "Fernando" was released in the original track listing for the Australian and New Zealand version of the original record after "Why Did It Have to Be Me?" and before "Tiger." This added more than 4 minutes of playtime to Side 2. [15]

Personnel[edit]

Additional musicians

Production

  • Benny Andersson – producer, arranger
  • Björn Ulvaeus – producer, arranger
  • Michael B. Tretow – engineer
  • Sven-Olof Walldoff – arranger
  • Rutger Gunnarsson – string arrangements
  • Ola Lager – cover design, photography
  • Rune Söderqvist – cover design
  • Jon Astley – remastering (1997 re-issue and 2001 re-issue)
  • Tim Young – remastering (1997 re-issue)
  • Michael B. Tretow – remastering (1997 re-issue and 2001 re-issue)
  • Henrik Jonsson – remastering (The Complete Studio Recordings box set)

Chart positions[edit]

Certifications and sales[edit]

Region Certification Certified units/Sales
Australia 900,000[37]
Canada (Music Canada)[38] 2× Platinum 200,000^
Finland (Musiikkituottajat)[39] Platinum 86,420[39]
France (SNEP Charts) 200,000
Ireland (IRMA)[40] 150,000[41]
Netherlands (NVPI)[42] Gold 500,000[43]
Norway (IFPI Norway)[44] Gold 25,000*
Germany (BVMI)[45] 2× Platinum 1,500,000[46]
Hong Kong (IFPI Hong Kong)[47] Gold 10,000*
Japan (Oricon Charts) 645,000[23]
Poland 800,000[46]
Sweden (GLF)[48] 692,569[49]
United Kingdom (BPI)[50] Platinum 1,600,000[46]
United States (RIAA)[51] Gold 500,000^

*sales figures based on certification alone
^shipments figures based on certification alone

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b Rees, Dafydd; Crampton, Luke (1991). Guinness Book of Rock Stars. Enfield: Guinness Publishing Ltd. p. 1. ISBN 0-85112-971-4.
  2. ^ a b c d e Carl Magnus Palm Arrival deluxe edition, 2006 liner notes
  3. ^ The Guardian - Benny and Bjorn interview
  4. ^ Eder, Bruce. "Arrival – Abba". AllMusic. Retrieved 16 November 2016.
  5. ^ Goddard, Simon. "Arrival – Abba". Pitchfork. Retrieved 16 November 2016.
  6. ^ a b Christgau, Robert (6 June 1977). "Consumer Guide". The Village Voice. Retrieved 9 March 2012.
  7. ^ Tucker, Ken (7 April 1977). "ABBA: Arrival : Music Reviews". Rolling Stone. Jann Wenner. Archived from the original on 16 January 2009. Retrieved 9 March 2012.
  8. ^ Christgau, Robert (1980). "CG 70s: The Grades". Robert Christgau. Retrieved 9 March 2012.
  9. ^ Eder, Bruce. "Arrival [Import Bonus Tracks 2001] - ABBA". Allmusic. Rovi Corporation. Retrieved 9 March 2012.
  10. ^ Nathan Brackett, Christian David Hoard, ed. (2 November 2004). The New Rolling Stone Album Guide. Simon & Schuster. pp. 1–2. ISBN 0-7432-0169-8.
  11. ^ Liner Notes, CD Edition
  12. ^ a b c "1970s Albums Chart Archive". everyhit.com. The Official Charts Company. Archived from the original on 6 October 2009. Retrieved 8 March 2013.
  13. ^ a b "Album – Jahrescharts: 1977". charts.de. Media Control Charts. Retrieved 1 March 2013.
  14. ^ "Official Albums Chart Top 100". OfficialCharts.com. 3 August 2018.
  15. ^ RCA Victor VPL1-4034 LP Recording B Side - 1976 Polar Music AB
  16. ^ http://www.abbaomnibus.net/songs/whosings.htm
  17. ^ a b c Kent, David (1993). Australian Chart Book 1970-1992. St Ives, N.S.W.: Australian Chart Book. ISBN 0-646-11917-6.
  18. ^ "austriancharts.at ABBA - Arrival". Hung Medien (in German). Archived from the original (ASP) on 5 November 2012. Retrieved 1 March 2013.
  19. ^ "RPM: Top Albums/CDs - Volume 27, No. 3, April 16, 1977". RPM Canada. Retrieved 1 March 2013.
  20. ^ "dutchcharts.nl ABBA - Arrival" (ASP). Hung Medien (in Dutch). MegaCharts. Retrieved 1 March 2013.
  21. ^ "InfoDisc : Tous les Albums classés par Artiste > Choisir Un Artiste Dans la Liste : ABBA". infodisc.fr. Archived from the original on 7 May 2013. Retrieved 1 March 2013.
  22. ^ a b "Hit Parade Italia - Gli album più venduti del 1977" (in Italian). hitparadeitalia.it. Retrieved 1 March 2013.
  23. ^ a b c Oricon Album Chart Book: Complete Edition 1970-2005. Roppongi, Tokyo: Oricon Entertainment. 2006. ISBN 4-87131-077-9.
  24. ^ "charts.org.nz ABBA - Arrival" (ASP). Hung Medien. Recording Industry Association of New Zealand. Retrieved 1 March 2013.
  25. ^ "norwegiancharts.com ABBA - Arrival". Hung Medien. VG-lista. Archived from the original (ASP) on 30 December 2012. Retrieved 1 March 2013.
  26. ^ "swedishcharts.com ABBA - Arrival". Archived from the original (ASP) on 13 October 2012. Retrieved 1 March 2013.
  27. ^ "Number 1 Albums – 1970s". The Official Charts Company. Archived from the original on 9 February 2008. Retrieved 24 June 2011.
  28. ^ "allmusic ((( Arrival > Charts & Awards > Billboard Albums )))". allmusic.com. Retrieved 1 March 2013.
  29. ^ "Album Search: ABBA - Arrival" (in German). Media Control. Retrieved 1 March 2013.
  30. ^ "Les Albums (CD) de 1976 par InfoDisc" (in French). infodisc.fr. Archived from the original (PHP) on 21 May 2012. Retrieved 1 March 2013.
  31. ^ "Austriancharts.st - Jahreshitparade 1977" (in German). Hung Medien. Archived from the original on 12 March 2014. Retrieved 1 March 2013.
  32. ^ "RPM Top 100 Albums of 1977". RPM. 31 December 1977. Archived from the original on 5 April 2014. Retrieved 24 February 2012.
  33. ^ "Japanese Year-End Albums Chart 1977" [1977年アルバム年間ヒットチャート] (in Japanese). Oricon. Retrieved 1 March 2013.
  34. ^ "Top Pop Albums of 1977". billboard.biz. Retrieved 24 February 2012.
  35. ^ "Japanese Year-End Albums Chart 1978" [1978年アルバム年間ヒットチャート] (in Japanese). Oricon. Retrieved 1 March 2013.
  36. ^ "Japanese Year-End Albums Chart 1979" [1979年アルバム年間ヒットチャート] (in Japanese). Oricon. Retrieved 1 March 2013.
  37. ^ Glen Baker (8 November 1979). Billboard Magazine Volume 91, No. 36. Nielsen Business Media, Inc. ISSN 0006-2510. Retrieved 31 October 2012.
  38. ^ "Canadian album certifications – ABBA – Arrival". Music Canada. Retrieved 31 October 2012.
  39. ^ a b "ABBA" (in Finnish). Musiikkituottajat – IFPI Finland. Retrieved 28 August 2013.
  40. ^ "Irish album certifications – ABBA – Arrival". Irish Recorded Music Association.
  41. ^ Stewart, Ken (8 September 1979). "Abba The World". Billboard. Retrieved 22 July 2018.
  42. ^ "Dutch album certifications – ABBA – Arrival" (in Dutch). Nederlandse Vereniging van Producenten en Importeurs van beeld- en geluidsdragers. Enter Arrival in the "Artiest of titel" box.
  43. ^ Hoos, Willem (8 September 1979). "Abba The World". Billboard. Retrieved 22 July 2018.
  44. ^ "Norwegian album certifications – ABBA – Arrival" (in Norwegian). IFPI Norway.
  45. ^ "Gold-/Platin-Datenbank (ABBA; 'Arrival')" (in German). Bundesverband Musikindustrie. Retrieved 31 October 2012.
  46. ^ a b c Murrells, Joseph (1978). The Book of Golden Discs (2, illustrated ed.). Barrie & Jenkins. ISBN 0-214-20480-4. It sold 1.6 million in Britain, 500,000 in the U.S., 800,000 in Poland, 950,000 in Australia and over 1.5 million in West Germany.
  47. ^ "IFPIHK Gold Disc Award − 1977". IFPI Hong Kong. Retrieved 8 January 2016.
  48. ^ NO certyear WAS PROVIDED for SWEDISH CERTIFICATION.
  49. ^ Schulman, Leif (8 September 1979). "Abba The World". Billboard. Retrieved 23 July 2018.
  50. ^ "British album certifications – ABBA – Arrival". British Phonographic Industry. Retrieved 31 October 2012. Select albums in the Format field. Select Platinum in the Certification field. Type Arrival in the "Search BPI Awards" field and then press Enter.
  51. ^ "American album certifications – ABBA – Arrival". Recording Industry Association of America. Retrieved 31 October 2012. If necessary, click Advanced, then click Format, then select Album, then click SEARCH. 

External links[edit]