Gimme, Gimme, Gimme: Why Can’t I Get You Out of My Head? An Obvious Look at ABBA

By: Derek Miller

Posted 01/23/2006 - 08:40:04 AM by :
 "You kept ABBA in your closet"...etc. Who`s the `you` in this opening sentence? Is it me? Is it another Stylus reader? Is it a critic`s device to connect with his readers? I never kept Abba in my closet, never muted them with my hand either. So is it a small portion of readers who might go "hey, yeah, that was me too!" & Then Derek gets into the confessional mode, but, changes the `you` to `I`, & then `I` becomes `we` and then a little later it`s `our` Abba. Ah, I see, could be an attempt to draw us in, to build up a buddy system of elbowed ribs. God, you know, I think you might be right Derek. It`s like therapy, you`re drawing out unwanted memories, memories that may not even exist, with your elaborate little devices. Yes, yes, it`s all flooding back to me now, the fucken 70s, the bubble gum cards that made a black & white collage of the band when you collected them all, Tina & Carolyn, the two blondes who went round school singing Knowing Me Knowing You, AM radio. FUCK. FUCK. See, what you`ve done? I think I`m you.
Posted 01/23/2006 - 09:08:29 AM by jcampbell:
 Can I ask an unrelated question... why does the new layout look *exactly* like Pitchfork? Has there been a merger?
Posted 01/23/2006 - 10:07:48 AM by bassman08:
 Is ABBA joining ELO as the newest member of the Hall of Fame?
Posted 01/23/2006 - 10:31:19 AM by wmdavidson:
 You know jcampbell, I was thinking the exact same thing. I came here last week and was like, "Kudos on the new design guys, looking good" ... then I visted Pitchfork right after, and, uh... it's the same.
Posted 01/23/2006 - 11:38:52 AM by jhitting:
 ABBA fucking blows. For shame, Stylus, for shame.
Posted 01/23/2006 - 12:06:18 PM by boilingboy:
 I'm confused by the focus on ABBA. They were, truly, a great singles band. Yes, they were the biggest band in the world at one point. However, their albums were often filled with embarrassing smarm. Go ahead, listen to them. Except for Arrival perhaps, can't ABBA's legacy be summed up in an over-stuffed best of collection? They were not the Beatles, anymore than ELO were.
Posted 01/23/2006 - 02:39:41 PM by J_R_K_:
 i liked the knock at wicker park, but i guess that means i'm a hipster since i got the joke.
this article could use some OAP. Some Old ALAN PARTRIDGE references. best fictional ABBA fan.
i don't want to complain that stylus isn't being obscure enough, but isn't this a little safe?
Posted 01/24/2006 - 12:35:15 AM by JohnCameron:
 One word: "Fernando." <3 x 10.
Posted 01/24/2006 - 01:14:49 AM by clem_bastow:
 Just out of interest, was it only in the US that ABBA were "kept in the closet"? Certainly wasn't the case here in Aus, and I suspect the UK was in the same boat...?
Posted 01/24/2006 - 03:35:42 PM by pabanks46:

R.I.P. Stylus (whenever-2006)
Posted 01/24/2006 - 06:55:32 PM by cwperry:
 I don't imagine I'll ever be able to understand why ABBA is discussed with any level of real admiration beyond amusical emotional ties and surface-level reminiscing. I think this is the equivalent of a circa 2036 Stylus Article of the Week talking about just how awesome and important a band like No Doubt is. Yuck.
Posted 01/25/2006 - 12:46:41 PM by J_R_K_:
Posted 01/25/2006 - 02:37:46 PM by pabanks46:
 lol @ No Doubt. 2036? Try Girls Aloud circa 2005. Argh!
Posted 01/25/2006 - 11:02:58 PM by iian_c_h:
 I enjoyed this enthusiastic appreciation of a great pop group -- one of the greatest. I gain more and more admiration for the genius that went into the best of their songs -- Mamma Mia, SOS, The Name of the Game, Dancing Queen, etc. -- each time I hear them. I just loaded three non-hits from the Voulez-Vous album into my iPod and they're amazing -- much better than I expected. I hear more in them now than I did when I was a kid and owned the LP. There are no throwaway tracks -- every song is put together with great care, intelligence, skill, and -- what comes through most -- a wild-happy love for making really cool, fun, exciting, freaky-weird, beautiful music. Seeing What about Livingstone and My Mama Said mentioned here -- I haven't listened to the Waterloo album in years -- must get my hands on a copy. So many brilliant songs beyond the singles waiting to be re/discovered -- including those on the later albums, which I wouldn't call tired but grown-up, with a dark mature complexity replacing the bright youthful energy. Also great to see the music hasn't yet outlived its poor, longsuffering haters. lol indeed.
Posted 01/25/2006 - 11:23:15 PM by boilingboy:
 Would we even be talking about ABBA if they adn't been so commercially successful? At long last, can't we just agree that they were a great singles band and forget it....please? ABBA have zero cultural significance.
Posted 01/26/2006 - 06:34:57 AM by vinegar:
 Late period ABBA was all about the albums, not the singles, but hey. Here's a not entirely unrelated question for you: why does the Stylus *readership* look so much like Pitchfork's (ca 2002)?
Posted 01/26/2006 - 09:17:36 AM by J_R_K_:
 because no one is reading your blog
Posted 01/26/2006 - 06:44:59 PM by :
 thanks IIAN_C_H. It`s good to see a happy day-glo positive comment at last. Man if it was only possible to type comments in rainbow colours and use pixel-glitter to highlight your words, how much brighter still you could seem! All these longsuffering Abba haters are a little more critically discriminating however. I also couldn`t help noting that this was your very first stylus post-a-comment too. It wouldn`t be that you`re another Stylus writer slapping yer mate Derek on the back would it?