It’s been a good week in ABBA-world.
Yesterday, news broke that the good people of Sweden would be erecting a museum in ABBA’s honor, a development that gave Swede-pop enthusiasts to break out celebratory bottles of Absolut. And today brings word that ABBA member Agnetha Faltskog is returning to the recording studio for the first time in eight years.
According to the AP, the 62-year-old Faltskog will collaborate with fellow countryman Jorgen Elofsson, the songwriter who’s worked with the likes of Brtiney Spears and Celine Dion. And while ABBAmaniacs will certainly be interested to hear new material from Faltskog, many are wondering: Why won’t ABBA just reunite already?
The quartet – Faltskog, Benny Andersson, Anni-Frid Lyngstad, and Björn Ulvaeus – disbanded thirty years ago to pursue other projects, but the ABBA brand has enjoyed renewed levels of popularity in recent years. Compilations of their hooky, highly agreeable hits were already trending upwards for years (ABBA Gold, anyone?) before the band’s comeback status was cemented in musical form with 1999’s Mamma Mia!, which, needless to say, led to a successful Broadway run and one of the highest-grossing movies of 2008. That movie’s soundtrack, composed solely of ABBA’s music, ended up topping the Billboard 200 albums chart, meaning that the band’s first No. 1 album in America came 26 years after they stopped putting out music. Two years later, they were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.
Clearly, the appetite is there for a reunion. Every time new ABBA news breaks, fans suddenly congregate and collectively yearn for the band to get back together. And while the four have appeared together from time to time, usually for Mamma Mia! reasons, you’d think that something like the inauguration of “ABBA the Museum” would be the perfect excuse to reunite. After all, if not then, when?
But, alas, it looks like a proper reunion might not be in order.
“We are the only group of that status that has never been reunited. I think that is cool,” Ulvaeus told the AP yesterday. “It is is a strength for ABBA that you remember those young, ambitious, energetic people during the ’70s rather than some feeble old folks who feel compelled to get up and play all the time.” Which, well, seems like a good-enough reason – though probably not the one fans want to hear. But, hey, as one wise Scandinavian band once sang, “Breaking up is never easy, I know/But I have to go.”
What about you guys? Do you ABBA fans think – or even expect – a band getting their own museum to reunite, even if just for a little bit? Do you want to hear new music from them, or just live shows of the songs you already love? Or does ABBA not even warrant a second life, let alone a museum? Let us know in the comments.