Manhattan Skyline (song)

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"Manhattan Skyline"
Single by A-ha
from the album Scoundrel Days
B-side"We're Looking for the Whales" (Live in Croydon)
Released16 February 1987
  • 4:52 (Album Version)
  • 4:21 (Single Version)
  • 6:49 (Extended Remix)
LabelWarner Bros.
Producer(s)Alan Tarney
A-ha singles chronology
"Cry Wolf"
"Manhattan Skyline"
"The Living Daylights"

"Manhattan Skyline" is a song by the Norwegian pop band A-ha. It was the third single from their Scoundrel Days album, and reached #13 in the UK Singles Chart.

The song was co-written by keyboardist Magne Furuholmen and guitarist Paul Waaktaar-Savoy. The song starts with Furuholmen playing a Harpsichord synthesizer sound in F major, before kicking into a hard rock-style chorus with a guitar riff in D minor. In the official A-ha biography, The Swing of Things 1985–2010 by Jan Omdahl, Furuholmen said: "Manhattan Skyline" was perhaps one of the most inspired cut and paste projects that Paul and I did. I wrote the quiet part. Paul wrote the rock part. I thought I was doing a classic when I worked on the opening riff. Well, okay, it is a classic, actually."[1]

The B-side, "We're Looking for the Whales", was recorded at a concert at Fairfield Halls, Croydon in London on 19 January 1987.

The single version omits the lyric "you see things in the depths of my eyes that my love's run dry" that is present twice on the album version during the song's main chorus.


On January 30, 1987 A-ha filmed the "Manhattan Skyline" video in a London studio. The music video was directed by Steve Barron and was inspired by newsprint, featuring a connect-the-dots animation of the band, a crossword puzzle, a printing press, and articles from newspapers from around the world.[1]

The newspaper at the end is one of Norway's largest papers, Aftenposten.

Track listings[edit]

7": Warner Bros. / W 8405 United Kingdom (1987)[edit]

  1. "Manhattan Skyline" (Single Edit) - 4:21
  2. "We're Looking for the Whales" (Edit) (Live in Croydon) - 3:50
  • Track 2 recorded Live at Fairfield Hall, Croydon, January 19, 1987.

12": Warner Bros. / W 8405TW United Kingdom (1987)[edit]

  1. "Manhattan Skyline" (Extended Remix) - 6:49
  2. "We're Looking for the Whales" (Full) (Live in Croydon) - 6:44
  3. "Manhattan Skyline" (Album Version) - 4:52
  • Track 1 remixed by Mags Furuholmen, Pål Waaktar and Gerry W.W. Kitchingham.
  • Track 2 recorded Live at Fairfield Hall, Croydon, January 19, 1987.

Chart history[edit]

Chart (1987) Peak
Belgian Singles Chart 19
Dutch Top 75 53
German Singles Chart[2] 28
Irish Singles Chart[3] 3
Norwegian Singles Chart[4] 4
UK Singles Chart[5] 13


  1. ^ a b "The Official Community of A-ha".
  2. ^ "German Singles Chart". Charts-Surfer. Archived from the original on December 16, 2008. Retrieved 2008-06-07.
  3. ^ "Irish Singles Chart". The Irish Chart. Retrieved 2008-03-07.
  4. ^ "Norwegian Singles Chart". VG-lista. Retrieved 2008-03-07.
  5. ^ "British Single Chart". UK Top 40. Retrieved 2008-03-07.

External links[edit]