Abba tops UK charts with comeback album 'Voyage', their first in almost 40 years

This is the Swedish best-selling group's 10th No 1 album in the country

The new Abba album 'Voyage' on display at a local record store in Stockholm. The group has scored their first UK No 1 in nearly 40 years. AFP
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Abba's first studio album in almost 40 years has made it to the top of the UK charts, becoming the fastest seller of the year so far, the Official Charts Company said on Friday.

Voyage by the Swedish quartet of Agnetha Faltskog, Bjorn Ulvaeus, Benny Andersson and Anni-Frid Lyngstad racked up 204,000 chart sales in the seven days since it was launched last Friday.

Sales gave the supergroup the biggest opening week on the UK album chart in four years since Ed Sheeran's Divide, and the fastest-selling album by a group in eight years.

The last fastest-seller was One Direction's Midnight Memories in November 2013.

Abba, propelled to global fame by their 1974 Eurovision Song Contest win with Waterloo, split in 1982, a year after their last album, The Visitors.

Voyage is their 10th number one album in the UK: only seven other acts – The Beatles, Elvis Presley, The Rolling Stones, Robbie Williams, Madonna, Bruce Springsteen and David Bowie – have had more.

An accompanying tour, Abba Voyage, set to feature “Abba-tars” or avatars of the group's younger selves is set to begin in 2022.

"We are so happy that our fans seem to have enjoyed our new album as much as we enjoyed making it," the group said. "We are absolutely over the moon to have an album at the top of the charts again."

The 204,000 sales comprise 90 per cent physical copies, including 29,900 on vinyl, making it the fastest-selling vinyl release of the 21st century.

The previous record-holder was the Arctic Monkeys' Tranquility Base Hotel & Casino, which sold 24,500 vinyl copies in 2018.

In an interview with Reuters last week, Ulvaeus said Voyage might be the last new venture by one of the biggest-selling bands of all time.

However, fellow member Lyngstad left the door open in an interview with BBC Radio 2 on Thursday, saying: "I have learned to say never to say never ... you never know. So don't be too sure."

– Additional reporting by AFP and Reuters

Updated: November 14, 2021, 6:13 AM