Agnetha Fältskog

That's Me: Greatest Hits

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Former ABBA member Agnetha Fältskog's That's Me: Greatest Hits compiles highlights and rarities from the second phase of her solo career, which lasted from ABBA's breakup in 1982 to the late ‘80s, and comprised three albums, Wrap Your Arms Around Me (1983), Eyes of a Woman (1985), and I Stand Alone (1987). Three tracks each have been selected from these albums, songs that were released as singles in various territories and enjoyed some commercial success. For example, "The Heat Is On" (not to be confused with the Glenn Frey song of the same title that came a couple of years later) was released as the first single from Wrap Your Arms Around Me in the U.K. and made the Top 40, while in the U.S., "Can't Shake Loose" was chosen instead and made the Top 30. Both tracks, produced by British hitmeister Mike Chapman (the Sweet, Blondie), were in the synth-dance-rock style of the early ‘80s. More typically, however, Chapman and Eyes of a Woman producer Eric Stewart of 10cc, among others, tried to re-create elements of the ABBA sound that had made Fältskog successful, even to the point of recording in Sweden with some of the same backup musicians the group had used. The ABBA sound becomes even more prevalent on the disc because of the presence of a few actual ABBA tracks. "The Winner Takes It All" and "Slipping Through My Fingers" are songs on which Fältskog had the lead vocals, while "That's Me," an ABBA B-side, though featuring both Fältskog and fellow ABBA singer Frida, is described by annotator Carl Magnus Palm as one of Fältskog's favorite tracks by the band. Her last album producer of the era, Peter Cetera, did not go for an ABBA-like sound on I Stand Alone. Instead, recording in Los Angeles, he simply inserted Fältskog's vocals into one of his typical David Foster-like productions of West Coast pop in the manner of his own later work with Chicago and solo. As heard here, Cetera's duet with Fältskog on "I Wasn't the One (Who Said Goodbye)" (a Top 20 Adult Contemporary chart hit) was, for all intents and purposes, the follow-up to his duet hit with Amy Grant of the year before, "The Next Time I Fall." In addition to tracks from the solo albums and ABBA songs, the compilation is filled out by English-language singles and non-LP B-sides, several of which were issued only in Sweden. Several of these are impressive pop performances, notably the previously unreleased 1981 demo "The Queen of Hearts," co-written and co-produced by Fältskog herself, which is one of the more ABBA-like tracks here. After the release of I Stand Alone, Fältskog essentially retired from her musical career, but this album gives a good accounting of her immediate post-ABBA efforts.

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