"Arrival" is a 1976 song by ABBA featured on their album of the same name. It is an instrumental piece, mainly the brainchild of member Benny Andersson and had the working titles of "Fiol", "Ode to Dalecarlia" & "Arrival in Dalecarlia".

Contents Edit

  • 1 Background
  • 2 Cover versions
    • 2.1 Mike Oldfield version
      • 2.1.1 Track listing
      • 2.1.2 Oldfield's credits
    • 2.2 Other cover versions, sampling, etc.
  • 3 References

Background Edit

"Arrival" was the second and last song from the group not to contain lyrics, following "Intermezzo No.1" the previous year. As with "Intermezzo No.1", the choral tune, heavily influenced by traditional Swedish folk music, was written by Benny Andersson and Björn Ulvaeus. It was recorded on 30 August 1976 at Stockholm's Metronome Studio. The title of the album, Arrival, gave the instrumental its name, rather than vice versa. It was also one of the last tracks to be recorded for the album before its release on 11 October 1976.

In 1983, a different version of the song with lyrics, called "Belle", was sung by Daniel Balavoine and Anni-Frid Lyngstad ("Frida") as part of the French musicalABBAcadabra. Also in 1983, it was re-recorded with different lyrics, and released as "Time" by B. A. Robertson and Lyngstad.

Cover versions[edit] Edit

Mike Oldfield version[edit] Edit

Single by Mike Oldfield
from the album QE2
Released 12 September 1980
Format Vinyl
Recorded 1980
Genre Instrumental
Length 2:46
Label Virgin
Writer(s) Benny Anderson

Björn Ulvaeus

Producer(s) Mike Oldfield

David Hentschel

Mike Oldfield singles chronology
"Blue Peter"






In 1980 Mike Oldfield recorded a cover-version of the song, which is found on his QE2 album. The artwork for Oldfield's single is a parody of ABBA's Arrival album artwork depicting the artist in a Bell 47G helicopter.

Track listing[edit] Edit

  1. "Arrival" – 2:46
  2. "Polka" (live on European tour 1980) – 3:34
  • "Polka" consists of a medley of one and a half traditional Irish polkas— the first part of "The 42 Pound Checque" and the first and second parts of "John Ryan's Polka". Mike Oldfield rearranged the parts so that he is going from the A part of "42 Pound Checque" to the B part of "John Ryan's", then to the A part of "John Ryan's", then back to the B part of "John Ryan's". He plays through the entire medley 3 times in all, with increasingly more backup and percussion each time. Also, he has transposed these tunes to the key of G, where they are more commonly played in D, traditionally.

Oldfield's credits[edit] Edit

  • Mike Oldfield: Electric Guitars, African Drums, Celtic Harp, Bass Guitar, Mandolin, Spanish Guitar, Synthesizers, Vocoder, Aboriginal Rhythm Sticks, Vocals[1]
  • David Hentschel: Synthesizers, Drums, Vocals
  • Maggie Reilly: Vocals
  • Strings and Choir arranged by David Bedford
  • Leader of Strings: Dick Studt
  • Choir English Chorale

Other cover versions, sampling, etc.[edit] Edit

  • French singer Michèle Torr covered the song and added lyrics, under the title "J'aime".
  • German dance group Scooter sampled "Arrival" in the song "Roll Baby Roll" on their 2003 album The Stadium Techno Experience, although some chords are slightly altered.
  • The British rock band The Darkness played "Arrival" as their opening song on headlining tours.
  • Sarah Brightman recorded a vocal version for her 2008 seasonal album A Winter Symphony, with previously unused lyrics from Björn Ulvaeus, which he wrote in 1999 for possible inclusion in the Mamma Mia! musical.[citation needed]
  • ABBA tribute act Björn Again have used this as their entry music when starting a gig for many years.
  • The German band Gregorian made a cover of this song, on their album Masters of Chant Chapter VII.