Wer8™️ Music Review: ABBA Voyage

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Wer8™️ Music Review: ABBA Voyage

Originally, this weeks Wer8 was meant to be of Lorde’s Solar Power; however, on the 2nd September 2021, ABBA decided to release two songs from their upcoming single Voyage. Marking their return to the charts after forty years.

And like any normal British person, I decided to listen to both songs non-stop. Did I Still Have Faith In You and Don’t Shut Me down reach the right chords? Will I be giving ABBA my ‘Money, Money, Money.’? Or will I want to call an S.O.S for a musical disaster?

Don’t Shut Me Down

let's start with the good of the two tracks. Don’t Shut Me Down starts simply with

A While Ago I Heard The Sound Of Children's Laughter
Now It's Quiet, So I Guess They Left The Park
This Wooden Bench Is Getting Harder By The Hour
The Sun Is Going Down, It's Getting Dark

When you first hear them, the beginning lyrics throw you for a loop and make it a little difficult to get into the song at first. The music itself is very soft and quiet, and in this first verse, it's just piano and violin, but it adds to the reminiscent feeling in the track.

Second Verse

As we go into the second verse, Benny hits the piano keys like the beginning of Dancing Queen, but shorter, signalling the melody and tempo will get much more upbeat. Ultimately this is where ABBA’s classic disco routes return.

The lyrics continue to tell the story of a woman going to an ex’s house with a nice drum beat, and then it hits the bridge, and the melody goes into overdrive with the verse.

When I Lеft I Felt I'd Had Enough
But In The Shape And Form I Appеar Now
I Have Learned To Cope
And Love And Hope Is Why I Am Here Now


And Now You See Another Me
I've Been Reloaded, Yea-ah
I'm Fired Up, Don't Shut Me Down
I'm Like A Dream Within A Dream That's Been Decoded
I'm Fired Up, I'm Hot, Don't Shut Me Down

The rhythm and rhyming between ‘ I have learned to cope... Love...Hope’ are really satisfying and help speed up the tempo justifying the change in pace. I also enjoy the rhyme between ‘ Reloaded’ and ‘Decoded’. Another thing that makes this verse so good is the harmonisation. It all flows really well together and is satisfying.

As I said, the lyrics tell a woman going to an ex-lover to get them back. We have lyrics telling us about how they’re glad the flat hasn’t changed. Adding to the story, and by this point, I’m emotionally invested. However, the song ends before we can get an answer. Leaving us on a very satisfying cliffhanger.

I Still Have Faith In You

Next on the Pre-release of Voyage, ABBA has given us I Still Have Faith In You. Admittedly, when I listened to this last night, I struggled to get into it, finding it a bit slow. However, I’m listening to it now (yes, I listen to the music as I write), and it has grown on me.

The song is ABBA worrying they won’t make their comeback ‘good’ and then realising that they will. (actually, it's Agnetha doing the emotional work as per usual.) And again, being nostalgic of the past as shown in the video where we see old concert footage and pictures. The first verse starts as:

I Still Have Faith In You
I See It Now
Through All These Years That Faith Lives On, Somehow
There Was A Union
Of Heart And Mind
The Likes Of Which Are Rare And Oh So Hard To Find

the music is soft piano keys, with some harmonisation between Frida and Agneta and as their singing and reaching the chorus, we can hear the swelling of drumbeats. The lyrics have some nice imagery in there that tugs on the heartstrings.

Do I Have It In Me?
I Believe It Is In There
For I Know I Hear A Bittersweet Song
In The Memories We Share

I Still Have Faith In You
And I Will Say
I Never Really Thought I'd Feel This Way

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Whenever the song gets to the chorus that always begins with ‘ I Still Have Faith In you’, there is a nice melodic whistling and an even louder swelling of guitar that works well together and gives the song a triumphant tone as the band continue to rely on each other and reach an obvious but heartwarming conclusion that they will be fine working together again.

Final thoughts and rating

Both songs work really well and make good use of ABBA’s classic disco tunes they are well known for, and it feels comforting and, as always, sounds right.

Whilst I love both songs that have been pre-released before the actual album. I prefer Don’t Shut Me Down as it's a bit easier to get into and sounds a bit more typical of ABBA.

Whereas I Still Have Faith In You takes a little while to warm up too. However, it pulls an emotional punch ( not as strong as The Winner Takes it all, but then nothing will) and is still fun to listen to.

As we only have the two songs to listen to till the proper release, I can only go by these two songs.

Overall rating: 3 stars out of 5. I got a good sense of their albums tone and greatly enjoyed going back to ABBA. However, I prefer one song over the other and until I hear the other eight tracks. (Even though I want to but that wouldn't be fair.)

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