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Day Before You Came, The

(Bjorn Ulvaeus/Benny Andersson)

Recorded on 20th August 1982 this song was the last recorded by ABBA in a studio before they went their separate ways and initially went by the working title “Den Lidande Fageln” (The Suffering Bird).

The song is the story of a girl’s life just before meeting her love, although some have thought it is describing her just before she dies and it is accompanied by a haunting and solemn melody.

It came out as a single release in October 1982 accompanied by “Cassandra” which was the featured B-side and a video featuring the Swedish actor Jonas Bergstrom, filmed on 21st September of that year.  Seeing nowhere near the success of previous ABBA releases it was still a Top 5 hit in several European countries, but only peaked at No. 32 in the UK and didn’t enter the Bilboard chart in the US.  It was released on their album The Singles: The First Ten Years in November of 1982 with just the vocals of Agnetha Lyngstad and Agnetha Faltskog and a synthesizer, drum machine, acoustic guitar and snare drum providing the instrumentation.

Cover versions that have been recorded include ones by Tanita Tikaram, Anna Sofie von Otter and the group Blancmange, who took it to No. 22 in the UK chart and featured it on their album Mange Tout.

Anne Sofie von Otter recordings
Deutsche Grammophon D. G. 477 5901(CD: I Let The Music Speak)