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Abba: In Concert [DVD] 
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The title ABBA--In Concert is perhaps a little misleading in promising something a bit more "live" than is actually delivered. While this "official" TV film provides a fascinating insight into ABBA's 1979 tour of North America and Europe, the first segment of the 50-minute documentary is given over almost exclusively to behind-the-scenes material. As the film progresses and the action shifts from the US to London's Wembley, more live performance footage is included such as full length renditions of "Chiquitita", "Dancing Queen" and "Summer Night City".
Made by Swedish television company SVT, and released for the first time on DVD in 2004 to coincide with ABBA's 30th anniversary, Urban Lasson's film begins by charting the group's attempts to crack the US. Rather than using a narrator to guide the viewer through the scenes, the film competently uses stylish images to tell the story of the group's trip across the continent. Recorded at the height of the disco era, the American footage is dominated by images of roller skaters, and some of the live material from the Wembley shows was shot by a roller-skating cameraman, so that he could move more quickly on stage to get the best shots.
The four split just a couple of years after this tour, making the film one of a few quality recordings of the band playing live. It's a shame that additional full performances of other ABBA favourites were not recorded, or included in the final cut. However the disc does include previously unreleased DVD footage of "The Way Old Friends Do", "I Have A Dream" (Unedited Live Version) and "Thank You For The Music" to partially compensate for this.
On the DVD:As well as the bonus concert performances, the DVD includes recently recorded interviews with the film director Urban Lasson, and the promoter and tour producer Thomas Johansson. A tour souvenir programme picture gallery is also included, and the disc comes with a 28-page colour booklet, which features an excellent extended essay by Carl Magnus Palm on the making of the film. The soundtrack has been painstakingly remastered in 5.1 Surround Sound, making the live performances sound stunning. --John Galilee
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Top Customer Reviews
There are bonus tracks, interviews with producers of the shows and people close to ABBA at the time. They recount their memories of their time with ABBA on tour. A good insight into what happenned and a few snippets of current information. Will they reform? Not even a billion dollars as reportedly offered recently will make them reform.
Extra concert footage includes unseen and renovated "The Way Old Friends Do" preceded by Agnetha and Bjorn recalling how well this track sounded live. So much so they added it to their 1980 album "Super Trouper". A great unseen "Thank You For The Music" and "I Have A Dream", an uninterrupted version in full.
A great historical record of a great group at the height of its popularity in the 1970s. This DVD is a must for anyone studying music and of course for anyone who likes ABBA.
Another great thing about this DVD is that it is in 5.1 Surround sound which allows you to get the full Abba experience.
This is a must have for any Abba fan and collector especially if you were not around when Abba was together.
A MUST HAVE!!!!
The sound quality, in particular, is excellent - I shut my eyes a couple of times and could imagine being right there in the crowd. Also, it's filmed very intimately - the real focus (and rightly so) being the band and not the crowd, with plenty of close-ups and on-stage shots. And all the 'life on the road' clips at the beginning are insightful and intriguing.
But while the performances are good, I think the concert falls a little flat in parts. In 2007 we are used to seeing highly produced and choreographed music shows, and Abba's energetic but slightly inpromptu stage movements look quite dated now.
Also, I know that the film was only ever supposed to be an hour long, but I can't help but feel a little dissappointed that we didn't see the whole concert from start to finish - it might have made up for the fact that the majority of songs were short versions.
Having said that, it's worth a look, and while some of the magic is missing, it's still Abba and the music is still fantastic!
Most Recent Customer Reviews
If you like Abba then you will love this DVD.
Great live performances from a great band.
Not particularly impressed with Dvd. Content was indeed very limited and songs only partially captured. Off stage footage didn't give a great insight into bands dynamics. Read morePublished 1 month ago by Paddysboy
Abba in concert. Since their tours were quite rare, seeing this excellent concert with improved sound and picture compared to the ancient VHS copy I had years ago was wonderful. Read morePublished 8 months ago by Top40dj
Really comes into its own with 5.1 surround sound. Disappointed there were not more songs instead of the tour. I have a dream. Read morePublished 11 months ago by Mike