Dancing Queen

AlbumbyCher

Released in 2018, 10 tracks, 40 min

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Dance-Pop

Narratives

"Dancing Queen"

Dancing queen – An album by the carefree and supposed timeless diva is just electric.

It was the year 2018 and Cher the seemingly immortal diva released her twenty-sixth studio album made of ABBA covers. ABBA is a Swedish pop group whose career began in the early 70’s, a couple of years after Cher began her musical career. The group’s name is an acronym of the first letters of the names of the four members of the band. The group had a very successful career, topping the charts worldwide for roughly more than a decade. They sold a total of a hundred and forty to five hundred records worldwide which made them one of the best-selling artists of all time. The group was so good it charmed the entire world but more importantly it charmed the heart of the pop star, Cher. The part that I don’t get is why it took her so long to show her love for the band. Why did it take till 2018 for the songstress to make a cover of ABBA songs? That is almost a fifty year difference between when the group began its career and when she released her cover tracks. I don’t even want to begin to talk about the age of the artist when she made this move but one thing is for sure- she truly loved the band. It is believed that the artist was inspired by a scene-stealing role that she played in Mamma Mia. The first thought that came to my mind when I heard that Cher was about to release yet another album in 2018 was that she was probably in some sort of financial crisis. The second thing was she was probably bored but people don’t create music when they are bored, if anything, music creation is hard work. Anyway, my perceptions were changed after she dropped the album and the fact that she created music this good at age 72 is just an example of her inexplicable genius. The songs are a real buzzer. They are elevating; in fact when I listened to the song for the first time I could not stop smiling and stomping my feet, it was really fun. The album consists of what is probably the best of the 70’s.

Jun 21, 2019

Gimme! Gimme! Gimme!

When you think back on Cher’s musical career, she will likely be best remembered for her campy dance-fueled hits. Her songs often tell a story. The melodies are infectious. Decade after decade, Cher has reinvented herself to keep her sound fresh and relevant. My favourite fact about her is that she is the only artist to have a number one single in six consecutive decades. So who better to cover the classic songs of ABBA than Cher - someone who had her own disco hits back in the day. Someone, who like ABBA, helped define the music of a generation. In this case, we have a legend covering the songbook of a legendary band. After watching ‘Mamma Mia! Here We Go Again’ starring Cher, I was pleasantly surprised how great Cher sounded singing ‘Fernando.’ Cher has a unique voice - and therefore, when she covers another well known song, it could either be sensational or tragic. In the case of ABBA, it works. Apparently Cher felt it worked so well, that she went back into the studio and recorded a fair section of the ABBA catalogue for her most recent album. While filming the movie, she recalled how happy the music made her, and she decided then and there to record the record right after she was finished filming. It’s true - there is something intrinsically uplifting to the music of ABBA which is why they became an international phenomenon. ‘Dancing Queen’ has been a commercial success for Cher - selling more units in a single week than any other album she has released. I think the familiarity of the songs and the upbeat nature of the music helped sales. ABBA has the Midas-touch - not only by selling over 300 million albums, but by producing wildly successful musicals and movies based on their music. The world has a love for ABBA and it’s no surprise that Cher’s album did so well. It fills a void in current pop culture - where we have seen a recent shift towards expletive-laced R&B, politically fuelled songwriters and more melancholy angsty pop. One of the challenges with a cover album is making the songs your own. Cher has an incomparable sound. In more recent years, her signature use of autotune has transformed her distinct style. ‘Dancing Queen’ has a very healthy dose of auto-tune and digitization while still keeping a recognizable feel. Although I feel like there is too much synthesizer used throughout the entire album, at least it keeps with the 70/80s feel of the original. The only disappointment for me is that I expected Cher to do more with the individual songs. To me it sounds like a remastered version of the Broadway ‘Mamma Mia’ soundtrack. I would have loved to hear ‘One of Us’ be recorded as a duet - or maybe with only piano accompaniment. Why not do a mashup of ‘Dancing Queen’ and ‘Believe’ or ‘Waterloo’ and ‘Take Me Home.’ Where is an awesome club remix of ‘The Winner Take it All?’ I think some of the orchestrations border on sounding tired - when covering songs that are 40+ years old, is hard to avoid. While I know it’s meant to have a dance feel, I think it could have benefited from a less digital sound. I love ABBA’s cannon of work, but between the originals, the Broadway show (which I adore) and the movies, the songs can get a bit stale. It would have been nice to see Cher breath some new life into them. At the age of 72, it’s impressive that Cher can still turn out a quality album like this. She even has plans to release another ABBA cover album within the next couple years due to the tremendous success of this one. Her Here We Go Again world tour has continued to pack arenas around the globe - while still maintaining her residency in Las Vegas. Several years ago, ABBA themselves made a press release that they were going to go on tour with the use of holograms. To date, that plan has yet to actually materialize - which is crushing to a fan such as myself. If I look back at all the artists that I wish I had seen live (and haven’t), my list is pretty short: Elvis, Frank Sinatra and ABBA. Elvis was gone before I was born, Frank passed when I was a teenager and ABBA’s last public performance was when I was a toddler. I have my fingers crossed that they reunite for a farewell tour but it’s pretty doubtful. So in the meantime, we have Cher to help us relive the music and the memories.

Written by @spoiledsplendid
May 17, 2019

Dancing Queen Improves ABBA In The Only Conceivable Way – By Adding Cher To The Mix

Would you ever stare at the beautiful masterpiece Italian visionary Michelangelo painted on the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel & say to yourself “meh, interesting but it could really use some improvement around the edges”? Do you spend your days excavating entire mountainsides in the Swiss Alps under the misguided belief your puny human hands could ever reshape them into something as breathtaking as the natural splendor the Earth created over hundreds upon thousands of millennia? The simple answer to these questions, of course, is a hard & well-defined ‘no,’ as modern culture has instilled a deep reverence within human beings for things of true beauty, the collective consciousness of all living creatures agreeing that there are certain things you just can’t touch, their sacred properties as valuable as life itself – Naturally, then, if I were to ask you if any of the myriad hits Swedish Disco legends ABBA have released in their career needed any sort of improvements, you’d likely tell me to shut my mouth & take a seat, as their compositions are pure perfection & require nothing more than a working pair of ears to appreciate; Then again, if you’re someone as prolific as Pop diva Cher, the mere addition of your voice to any musical arrangement is proof enough that miracles truly do exist, as evidenced by her fantastic cover-album of ABBA’s works aptly named Dancing Queen – Yes, Our Lady Of The Immaculate Dancefloor has returned once again to achieve the impossible, determined to halt the progress of modern hatred by utilizing her powerful vocal prowess & larger-than-life persona to bring back some of the world’s most impressive jams with a sleek new coat of paint, taking care to stay true to the source material wherever possible whilst injecting that tantalizing dance energy only she has the moxie to wield, showing that age is nothing but a number when you’re absolutely brimming with latent musical ability. I went into this record thinking it was just going to be another run-of-the-mill cash-grab like the lifeless cover albums you typically get from acts like Mariah Carey & Josh Groban, but the minor changes in tone & narrative rearrangement she provides really do change this experience into something unique enough for even the most die-hard ABBA fan to enjoy, unable to be scrutinized in the same way as her inferior contemporaries – Let’s break down some of its finer moments, shall we?

Mar 06, 2019

Official Music Videos

"Dancing Queen"

Live Videos

"Dancing Queen"

Featuring Remixes

"Dancing Queen"

Fancam Videos

"Dancing Queen"

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Cover Videos

"Dancing Queen"

Album Info

"Dancing Queen"

Artist

Released

  • Sep 28, 2018

Genres

  • Dance-Pop

Label

  • Warner Bros.

Producer

  • Cher (exec.)
  • Benny Andersson (also exec.)
  • Björn Ulvaeus (exec.)
  • Judy Craymer (exec.)
  • Mark Taylor

About

Dancing Queen is the twenty-sixth studio album by American singer and actress Cher, released by Warner Bros. Records on September 28, 2018. It is Cher's first album in five years, following Closer to the Truth (2013). The album contains cover versions of songs recorded by Swedish pop group ABBA, with the title referencing their 1976 song "Dancing Queen". The album follows Cher's appearance in the 2018 musical film Mamma Mia! Here We Go Again, based on the music of ABBA.
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