Comeback City: The Eccentric and Expensive Fashion of ABBA and a Reunion that's 40 Years in the Making - The Scene

There was a reason behind all those metallics and sequins.

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When Abba walked on stage at the 1974 Eurovision song contest in Brighton, the supergroup debuted their signature style of head-turning fashion. Metallic platform boots, sequin embellished velvet, and face glitter weren’t only for their first impactful performance but donned in most of their musical gigs as they shot to fame. 

The Swedish quartet composed of Agnetha Fältskog, Björn Ulvaeus, Benny Andersson, and Anni-Frid Lyngstad looked to be riding off the eclectic trends the seventies are known for. And after all, their unique outfits matched the artistic charm of their folk-pop music—so their fashion choices seemed curated to fit their brand.

However, they revealed in a 2014 The Guardian piece that the bold style choices were not just to stand out but also, surprisingly, for tax efficiency.

Money, money, money

Ulvaeus shares in the band’s new book According to Abba: The Official Photo Book that in his “honest option,” they looked “nuts” in those years. “Nobody can have been as badly dressed on stage as we were,” the songwriter continued.

The Photo Book contains never-before-seen images of the band to mark 40 years since winning Eurovision. Inside, it’s written that the band’s clothing was influenced by the Swedish law that costumes can be deducted from the citizen’s tax bill— provided that the looks are outlandish enough that they won’t be worn regularly. 

As the band has a collective net worth of $1.2 billion, we’re guessing that their amusing idea to save money from taxes worked well for them. 

Reunion after decades

Forty years since their last album, Abba is making an anticipated comeback. With the release of the musical film Mamma Mia! (2008) and its prequel Mamma Mia! Here We Go Again (2018), the movies based around Abba songs, sparked the newer generations’ knowledge of the band’s hit songs.

Proof of Abba’s cross-generational relevance is their TikTok account. The Scandinavian band joined the quick streaming app, which Gen Z primarily uses last September 1. Today, or a week later, they’ve gained 1.7 million followers and 12.9 million likes on their profile.

To the excitement of all their old and new fans, Abba will be releasing their new album titled “Voyage” on November 5. In addition, the pop group has announced an interesting concert experience to be showcasing in London’s Olympic Park. 

In May 2022, digital versions of the Abba members will “perform” nightly along with a live band. On the topic of their reunion, Lyngstd tells The Guardian, “Such joy it was to work with the group again—I am so happy with what we have made,” and referred to her bandmates Andersson and Ulvaeus “exceptionally talented, truly genius songwriters.”

Banner photo from @abba_always_ on Instagram.

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