See That Cher What that Scene (Music Thoughts: Dancing Queen, Cher)

0093624904342_p0_v1_s550x406Cher and Abba is the gayest combination since Ethel Merman and Disco and the resulting project, ‘Dancing Queen’ is as fabulous as you think it would be. Sure, Cher even thinks that the whole idea is an afterthought – she recorded ‘Fernando’ for the Mamma Mia sequel over the summer and thought, sure why not record a full album of ABBA covers. Indeed, this seems to be one of the best ideas since Brett Kavanaugh’s nomination (that’s sarcasm, by the way)  This album isn’t just karaoke, this is Cher, and even though Mark Taylor’s production skews very close to the original arrangements. you still get the depth of a Cher interpretation. Take for example ‘Dancing Queen,’ which in theory could be the throwaway track. I found Cher’s lyrical interpretation to be a more soulful, because you believe her as she mouths the lyrics. This is not your peer telling you about having fun, this is your mother telling you to. And you can sense that she is having fun as she is telling you to have fun, and the whole track is more fun that you have ever listened to in a whole while. As a matter of fact, Cher’s vocals have never sound more textured – she brings conviction to the fluffy lyrics, giving them just enough gravitas. I find more things about it as I listen to it more. Even a song like ‘One Of Us,’ which I don’t particularly like (I don’t really like a lot of Abba songs as sung by Abba, if I am going to be honest) seems a lot more in her slowed down version. I am enjoying this album a lot more than I thought I would, and baby, there’s no guilt.

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