Arrival From Sweden, one of the world’s leading ABBA cover bands, came to Kitchener’s Centre in the Square to perform with the Kitchener-Waterloo Symphony this past weekend.
The show, held March 29 and entitled “The Music of ABBA,” was more than just a tribute to the Swedish pop legends, showcasing all of ABBA’s diverse talents including their unique costumes and work as composers.
The four-person cover band was started by Vicky Zetterberg in 1995 in Gothenburg, Sweden. Not just your run-of-the-mill cover band, they’ve partnered with Owe Sandström, the designer behind ABBA’s original costumes, to create an authentic ABBA experience featuring the stage clothes which made the band famous.
Arrival From Sweden has also recently received permission to perform an unreleased ABBA song, “Just a Notion,” from the original band members. Arrival will be releasing the single internationally in the near future.
The production value of the show was the very best of pop music — layered, well thought out, and fun. The set list included not only legendary hits such as “Gimme, Gimme, Gimme” and “S.O.S,” but also demonstrated ABBA’s true musical repertoire with “Intermezzo No. 1,” an instrumental piece composed by Benny Andersson and Björn Ulvaeus, as well as a piece from ABBA’s mini-musical The Girl with the Golden Hair.
The entire show was carried out by a five-piece band and the KW Symphony, a magnificent performance demonstrating ABBA’s detailed and impressive compositions. The orchestra really shined during “Intermezzo No. 1,” a musical marathon in terms of composition, and with huge hits like “Mamma Mia” and “Money, Money, Money.”
Zetterberg also paid a magnificent tribute to ABBA member Anni-Frid Lyngstad with a Swedish-English mashup of “Fernando.” Lyngstad originally released the hit song in Swedish and then went on to sing the solo parts of the song in English for ABBA.
The mashup was beautifully performed and really proved Arrival From Sweden to be the next best thing to ABBA. The vocal performances as a whole were eerily exact and had the entire audience swept up in singing and dancing along.
Overall, “The Music of ABBA” was much more than just music; it was a musical experience and a tour de force on the part of KW Symphony. The audience, consisting of ABBA-lovers young and old, gave a thunderous standing ovation at the conclusion of the show, begging for two encores.
Arrival From Sweden did not disappoint, and with a grand sense of humour performed “Thank You for the Music” before ending the night with a rendition of “Dancing Queen.”
Everything from the harmonies to the glittery go-go boots was spot on at the show. A wonderful selection of ABBA’s songs and compositions truly paid tribute to the pop legends, bringing everything that made ABBA one of the best bands of all-time to life in just two hours. Arrival From Sweden and the KW Symphony is a partnership that you truly have to see for yourself.