Pop supergroup ABBA have returned to the studio to record their first new music since the 1980s.
On an Instagram post, the Swedish quartet said the new material was an “unexpected consequence” of their recent decision to put together a “virtual reality” tour.
“We all four felt that, after some 35 years, it could be fun to join forces again and go into the studio,” the band said. “And it was like time stood still.”
No release date has been set for the new songs – but one of them, titled I Still Have Faith In You, will be performed in December on a TV special broadcast by the BBC and NBC.
Abba’s spokesperson Gorel Hanser has said the atmosphere in the studio was “magic”. “It was like no time had passed at all,” she said. “It was like the olden days. They were happy, it was easy and warm-hearted, and it was actually quite moving. I wasn’t the only one with tears in my eyes.”
But she said the group would not perform live, other than as holograms in the forthcoming Abba Avatar tour.
“It’s a studio moment, I can promise you,” she said. “Don’t expect too much.”
The band have resisted pressure to reform since they stopped recording together in 1982, despite a reported $1bn offer to tour in 2000.
In an interview with the BBC in 2013, Agnetha Faltskog said she preferred to leave the band in the past.
“It was such a long time ago, and we are getting older, and we have our different lives,” she explained.
News of the new material comes in a bumper year for Abba fans. An immersive exhibition based on the band’s career is running on London’s South Bank, while Chess, the musical Bjorn Ulvaeus and Benny Andersson wrote with Sir Tim Rice, is being revived in the West End.
After winning the Eurovision Song Contest with Waterloo in 1974, Abba sold almost 400 million singles and albums around the world.
Mamma Mia!, the musical based on their hits and produced by Ulvaeus and Andersson, has been seen by more than 50 million people.
During their most successful period, the band survived marriage break-ups between Ulvaeus and Faltskog, and Lyngstad and Andersson, but they finally called it a day in 1983.Share this :