Picks and Pans Review: Wrap Your Arms Around Me
There's an old Swedish saying—well, there ought to be an old Swedish saying, anyway—you can take the girl out of ABBA but you can't take ABBA out of the girl. This solo turn by one of the two women—the blond one—from that phenomenally successful international pop quartet is like the group's recordings. It is smooth, upbeat, relentlessly bright and on the sterile side. Fältskog, a onetime telephone operator, gets a little shrill once in a while, too, though she has a strong, clear voice. The only tune here that she wrote herself, Man, exhibits some of the banality that ABBA became famous for—"Man, don't make me cry/ Don't let it die/Cause deep inside I really know/That, after you/What would I do." But most of the material is by such mainstream American composers as Russ Ballard and Susan Lynch. It is serviceable if not overwhelmingly original: The Heat Is On, Can't Shake Loose, Wrap Your Arms Around Me. People who love ABBA won't like Fältskog on her own any less; those who don't love ABBA won't like Fältskog any better.