A-Ha: Classic or Dud?

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Tom mentioned recently that we don't usually get many answers for c/d threads on 80s artists who weren't spangly pop.

So what about the 80s pop artists we haven't done yet? My assessment, FWIW, in this case: I can take or leave the rest of their work, but they began with two immaculate singles, arguably the least aspirationally Anglo-American records ever to top charts in so many countries. Nothing can detract from those two. Any others?

Robin Carmody, Wednesday, 12 December 2001 01:00 (twenty years ago) link

I lean on the side of CLASSIC.

'Take on Me', enjoyable in a poppy boppy kind of way, pioneering the Artist-Appears-In-Girl's-Bedroom video genre. 'The Sun Always Shines On TV' -BRILLIANT. And the Bond one is quite good too. Can't remember any other songs by them.

DV, Wednesday, 12 December 2001 01:00 (twenty years ago) link

"The Living Daylights" is great. The rest is junk, I think.

Wheeler, Wednesday, 12 December 2001 01:00 (twenty years ago) link

Is this a trick question? DUD, by all means.

Andy, Wednesday, 12 December 2001 01:00 (twenty years ago) link

And what does that mean: "least aspirationally Anglo-American records..." They weren't aspiring to be Anglo-American? Well, they weren't, they were Norweigan.

Andy, Wednesday, 12 December 2001 01:00 (twenty years ago) link

I bought the stay on these roads LP after reading Julian Cope raving about them. They reminded him of doomed early 60's rockers Ricky Nelson. Unfortunately the LP was dull muso tosh.

The first two singles are overblown mini operas performed by precision crafted robots, and all the better for that.

Billy Dods, Wednesday, 12 December 2001 01:00 (twenty years ago) link

knowing me, Alan Trewartha, knowing you Morten, Mags and Pal, A-ha.

trick question as they are hun-dootedly classic.

get the "best of" if you don't have the stomach for much else. "Stay on these Roads" one of my favourite singles, followed by "Sun Always Shines" then "Manhattan Skyline" and "I've Been Losing You" joint 3rd, with "Take On Me" coming 5th (with "over played" points taken off).

Some lovely musical moments considering their pop status, often with downbeat endings that take you by surprise and some often intriguing lyrics as a bonus (what was Losing You all about then?)

I always thought that that Duran hit in the 90s reminded me of A-Ha.

Alan T (at home), Wednesday, 12 December 2001 01:00 (twenty years ago) link

Is this proof that some people just like to be contrary? Somehow I get the feeling that someone who considers A-ha classic might have "issues" with bands like The Beatles and the Rolling Stones. A-ha might've had a cool comic book video back when I was 12, but they got nothing on my man Rick Springfield!

Nude Spock, Wednesday, 12 December 2001 01:00 (twenty years ago) link

well i certainly don't like being contrary for the sake of it. e.g. it pains me to dislike something that a lot of other people transparently like and appreciate. (it = missing out in my book)

Alan T (at home), Wednesday, 12 December 2001 01:00 (twenty years ago) link

Sorry, Andy at Lookout -- I have to say that if one of your current bands covered something like "The Swing of Things" or "Hunting High and Low," it might be one of their best performances ever. In fact, get Me First and the Gimme Gimmees on the case.

Ned Raggett, Wednesday, 12 December 2001 01:00 (twenty years ago) link

Is this proof that some people just like to be contrary?

Hell no. Not when both Hunting High and Low and Scoundrel Days are such great albums as they are. :-)

Ned Raggett, Wednesday, 12 December 2001 01:00 (twenty years ago) link

A-Ha's first album is, like it or not, a classic album of our times. Any pop/rock critic would include it their top 100. And Scoundrel Days lp was quite fine too...Pals was a top producer / writer

rm, Wednesday, 12 December 2001 01:00 (twenty years ago) link

"Any pop/rock critic would include it in their Top 100"

This is perhaps a little hopeful.

They were good. Not great, but really, what's to dislike about them? And why would someone who dislikes the Stones and likes A-Ha be being contrary, Nude? If you didn't like (say) blues vocal stylings and songs built around riffs you'd have plenty to dislike in the Stones and nothing much to dislike in A-Ha.

Tom, Wednesday, 12 December 2001 01:00 (twenty years ago) link

One very superb, still brilliant, classic video = classic.

JM, Wednesday, 12 December 2001 01:00 (twenty years ago) link

Well, Tom, I think perhaps a better choice of words for future Classic or Dud threads should be "do you like them or not", since "classic" or "dud" status implies something beyond individual taste. "Classic" implies old and reliable, able to stand the test of time with wide acknowledgement and "dud" implies something that never worked right in the first place. When something is declared an "instant classic" it generally is a prediction for future status, based on immediate critical acclaim. This is why the Rolling Stones are commonly referred to as "classic" and A-ha is commonly referred to as "one hit wonder" or, quite possibly, "dud".

Nude Spock, Wednesday, 12 December 2001 01:00 (twenty years ago) link

I think Robin doesn't like the Stones, in fact ... or, at least, thinks they're unlikeable (is that correct, Robin)? Doesn't mean that Nude Spock's observation is one of general application, however.

Don't know much about A-Ha, save for "Take On Me" and "The Sun Always Shines." Both are nice eighties-synthpop songs, well-done and catchy and all, but both a little odd (see infra). Needless to say, the "Take On Me" video is a classic and smart to boot (the Jean Cocteau-meets-Speed Racer angle). Matter of fact, I think the video was probably why that song probably charted as well as it did, 'cause it was kind of an odd song to have charted over here -- didn't really sound much like homegrown or English synth-pop (the Norwegian element?), really fey even for a genre not known for being hairy-chested macho and all (or am I sounding too much like the teenage metalhead I was now?)

Tadeusz Suchodolski, Thursday, 13 December 2001 01:00 (twenty years ago) link

Ned is right about The Swing of Things - its an excellent song.

In fact, most of Scoundrel Days is pretty good, especially side one and The Weight of The Wind (!)

Surely The Sun Always Shines on TV is one of the weirdest songs ever to get to No.1 in the UK? All power to them for that, at least.

Zanny Gognet, Thursday, 13 December 2001 01:00 (twenty years ago) link

The original reason for "classic or dud" was to a) point up the absurdity and subjectivity of such extreme value judgements, b) force people to take a position.

Tom, Thursday, 13 December 2001 01:00 (twenty years ago) link

Robin, when my home PC's up and running again, can you remind me to e- mail you my '87 piece on "Scoundrel Days," which I thought was worthy of 4AD (in '87 that was a compliment).

Marcello Carlin, Thursday, 13 December 2001 01:00 (twenty years ago) link

Kid606 sampled one of their songs (Take On Me?) last night. Loads started jump up 'n' down suddenly. Guess we still like our 80s crap ey?

helen fordsdale, Thursday, 13 December 2001 01:00 (twenty years ago) link

The original reason for "classic or dud" was to a) point up the absurdity and subjectivity of such extreme value judgements, b) force people to take a position.

OH! See what you miss when you come in late? That sheds a lot of light on the whole C or D thing for me. Still, I think classic or dud are not too absurd because at some point you still need a term for mass opinion, I'd reckon.

Nude Spock, Thursday, 13 December 2001 01:00 (twenty years ago) link

Well to be fair this was the original reason in my head back in 1997, so you were hardly to have known.

Tom, Thursday, 13 December 2001 01:00 (twenty years ago) link

You're like a puppetmaster!

Nude Spock, Thursday, 13 December 2001 01:00 (twenty years ago) link

I love them (there aren't many singles that can better "The Sun Always Shines on TV"), but I will forever curse them because they caused Mitch "Cockfarmer" Albom to give up his career in music for journalism. Thus, they are the indirect reason for "Tuesdays with Morrie" existing.

Nicole, Thursday, 13 December 2001 01:00 (twenty years ago) link

I thought we'd done this before.

I like them very much. Listen to HEADLINES AND DEADLINES, and you find that it wasn't just a couple of 45s - they just keep on coming.

Vintage instances include: 'Hunting High and Low'; 'Manhattan Skyline'; 'Stay On These Roads'; 'Train Of Thought' - all memorable and exciting.

the pinefox, Thursday, 13 December 2001 01:00 (twenty years ago) link

A-ha are duds, but I heard a great mash up of 'take on me' in a dj set by Osymyso on bbc radio a couple of years ago, and there used to be a comical rave/hardcore remix about in the mid-nineties in the U.K. Can't stand the 80's stuff though.

penfold, Thursday, 13 December 2001 01:00 (twenty years ago) link

Classic. Their best of has a special place in my collection.

Sterling Clover, Thursday, 13 December 2001 01:00 (twenty years ago) link

I'd love to hear a raved up version of Sun Always shines, the intro bit after "give all your love to me" with the ascending keyboard thingy is just dying out for some syncopated acidy double-time bleeps to come in and rev up the pace. "TO MEEEEEE!". woo!

Alan Trewartha, Thursday, 13 December 2001 01:00 (twenty years ago) link

_Scoundrel Days_ is a deeply underrated album. Everyone should try to listen to it. "Maybe Maybe" changed my life, as did "Manhattan Skyline" and "Soft Rains Of April".

Dan Perry, Thursday, 13 December 2001 01:00 (twenty years ago) link

i've just listend to Hunting High and Low lp again and it stands up to the test of time and gets a B+. Classic stuff.

i'm gonna go buy a copy of Scoundrel Days now - i should never have swapped it for that wierd tape by the World Class Wreckin' Crew/back in the day...

rm, Thursday, 13 December 2001 01:00 (twenty years ago) link

...but I will forever curse them because they caused Mitch "Cockfarmer" Albom to give up his career in music for journalism. Thus, they are the indirect reason for "Tuesdays with Morrie" existing.

I admired him as a little boy and then I saw the Way and realized his cockfarming status. How did they cause him to give up his career in music? Oh let me guess -- did he said something snide about them?

Andy K., Thursday, 13 December 2001 01:00 (twenty years ago) link

Andy: my point was one made rather more obtusely by others, that they weren't even *trying* to write in what I would call "Pop English": there was an embarrassed, polite, grammatical second-language feel to some of their lyrics that is utterly antithetical to the directness and conversational tone of most pop music written in English-as-a- first-language.

Props to Zanny on the weirdness of "The Sun Always Shines ..."

I'll keep that in mind, Marcello.

Robin Carmody, Thursday, 13 December 2001 01:00 (twenty years ago) link

How did they cause him to give up his career in music?

There was an interview in the paper saying how he was writing songs in the vein of Billy Joel and Springsteen, and not getting very far in the old music biz.

Then he saw A-ha hit number one and he realized the pop world was a "vacuous wasteland full of pretty boys", and he decided he should be doing something "better" with his life.

Nicole, Thursday, 13 December 2001 01:00 (twenty years ago) link

Now knowing this, I think it would be fun to wander up to a book signing and idly whistle the melody at him or something.

Ned Raggett, Thursday, 13 December 2001 01:00 (twenty years ago) link

Then he saw A-ha hit number one and he realized the pop world was a "vacuous wasteland full of pretty boys", and he decided he should be doing something "better" with his life.

Right! "I'll base my career on catering to 60 year-olds. I will out- complain them in my column and on my radio show and they shall give me their undying admiration. Hey, wasn't the world a better place years ago?" Bravo! Speak it! Must admit it's worked out well.

Andy K., Thursday, 13 December 2001 01:00 (twenty years ago) link

Perhaps, but now I want him dead.

Ned Raggett, Friday, 14 December 2001 01:00 (twenty years ago) link

Well, maybe a bit harsh. I want him tickled, not by me. There.

Ned Raggett, Friday, 14 December 2001 01:00 (twenty years ago) link

Has anyone heard their penultimate comeback album (1993 or something) that was supposed to be "dark" in a Depeche Mode/Achtung Baby stylee? Also I remember Fred being exceedingly enthusiastic about their reappearance last year.

Tim, Friday, 14 December 2001 01:00 (twenty years ago) link

Fred should post here more, or at least be writing more.

Nicole, Friday, 14 December 2001 01:00 (twenty years ago) link

I'd forgotten what Tadeusz said upthread: yes, that's what I said about the Stones (quoting S. Reynolds's description of The Who, who I find relatively easy to like by comparison).

Tim raises a good point. What of "Summer Moved On"?

Robin Carmody, Friday, 14 December 2001 01:00 (twenty years ago) link

three months pass...
check out "minor earth, major sky" by a-ha one of the best albums of 2000, new album lifelines due in april. Fans of a-ha and depeche mode should check out fellow darkwave act "cranes"

john from eire, Tuesday, 19 March 2002 01:00 (twenty years ago) link

classic - manhattan skyline, take on me, the sun always shines..., living a boys adventure tale.

Poops McGee, Tuesday, 19 March 2002 01:00 (twenty years ago) link

damn, I never knew they had more than one album

Ron, Tuesday, 19 March 2002 01:00 (twenty years ago) link

six months pass...
I think a-ha were always a step ahead of 80s boy bands. As numerous msgs suggest, their first two albums were excellent ('Here I Stand and Face the Rain' on their debut is a pheonmenal song), and while 'Stay on These Roads' was strangled by production, the 90s releases 'East of the Sun, West of the Moon' and 'Memorial Beach' are both strong.

There comeback in the 21st century has been hugely successful. 'Minor Earth Major Sky' was their fastest selling album ever apparently and 'Lifelines' went platinum in several countries and spawned a number one single in six.

- 9L
http://www.clubi.ie/grizmond/

9lives, Thursday, 3 October 2002 00:47 (nineteen years ago) link

eight months pass...
This thread can never be revived enough. Hunting High and Low on the computer stereo at work and I'm a happy guy.

Ned Raggett (Ned), Friday, 27 June 2003 16:31 (eighteen years ago) link

yay! don't forget the love of baked goods.

Chris V. (Chris V), Friday, 27 June 2003 17:12 (eighteen years ago) link

one year passes...
Heh, I was thinking about that earlier when I put that very same album on again -- and now it plays.

"Blue sky...BLUE SKY!"

Ned Raggett (Ned), Tuesday, 14 September 2004 02:27 (seventeen years ago) link

_SCOUNDREL DAYS_ MOTHERFUCKER

Dan Perry '08 (Dan Perry), Tuesday, 14 September 2004 12:27 (seventeen years ago) link

I'm not denying that, I listened to that right afterwards!

Ned Raggett (Ned), Tuesday, 14 September 2004 13:40 (seventeen years ago) link

three months pass...
"Lifelines" - my europop princess girlfriend inconspicuously wedgded this CD into my car disc changer. Although I haven't heard much besides their innocuous 80's singles, I could't help but be impressed by it. Music and lyrics are just slightly risk-taking, in a way they're the same youngsters, it's just that the playground around them has changed.. I equate them to a much, much better Coldplay - seriously. And the singer's voice is phenomenal, considering his 20 years in the bizz. A great melancholy pop record.

deanster, Friday, 7 January 2005 00:42 (seventeen years ago) link

I equate them to a much, much better Coldplay - seriously.
Understatement of the decade, perhaps. ;-)

Coldplay are the better Coldplay. a-ha were better back when they were a-ha. :)

Geir Hongro, Tuesday, 7 October 2008 20:57 (thirteen years ago) link

one year passes...

Wah!:

Pop group A-ha have announced they are to call it a day, just months after scoring a top 10 album in the UK.
"We've literally lived the ultimate boy's adventure tale," the group said in a statement.
The trio added that the split would allow them to pursue "other meaningful aspects of life, be it humanitarian work, politics, or whatever else."

Ned Raggett, Thursday, 15 October 2009 15:47 (twelve years ago) link

There is always a time for everything and splitting now may be wise.

That being said, the four albums they have released after the reformation (because they did break up in the 90s too, after all...) have all been surprisingly good. Other than the "Scoundrel Days" album and part of the debut, I'd say that the noughties may well have been their best era from an artistic point of view.

Tied Up In Geir (Geir Hongro), Thursday, 15 October 2009 19:43 (twelve years ago) link

First few albums are classic, but they should've broken up about 15-20 years ago. I'm okay with this.

I just wish he hadn't adopted the "ilxor" moniker (ilxor), Thursday, 15 October 2009 20:09 (twelve years ago) link

Someone call up the Big C, tell him it's another sign that David Cameron is bring down the European social democrat pop dream.

"i find your antics mirthful and infectious" (King Boy Pato), Thursday, 15 October 2009 21:53 (twelve years ago) link

Unfortunately, as their best work was down about two decades ago, an awful lot of people probably believe they already has broken up.

Then again, an awful lot of people don't appreciate "The Sun Always Shines On TV".

"i find your antics mirthful and infectious" (King Boy Pato), Thursday, 15 October 2009 21:55 (twelve years ago) link

Speaking of "TV," I could use an excuse to post this cover version...

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zTdq-tMkayo

I just wish he hadn't adopted the "ilxor" moniker (ilxor), Thursday, 15 October 2009 22:06 (twelve years ago) link

Well, their latter albums are not at all bad. They were starting to lose it in the 90s, and their two 90s albums, plus their last 80s album, "Stay On These Roads" were their three weakest albums by quite a stretch. But then, they broke up and reformed, and after that they have been great. "Minor Earth Major Sky" from 2000 was particularly good, IMO even better than "Hunting High & Low", and the rest have also been quite good if quite not up there. Of course their best album remains "Scoundrel Days" and always will, but there were a couple of more recent albums that came close too.

Tied Up In Geir (Geir Hongro), Friday, 16 October 2009 10:38 (twelve years ago) link

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9FRlAjPjazM

Here's another cover of "TV" by Delays.

Johnny Fever, Friday, 16 October 2009 10:56 (twelve years ago) link

Their best noughties moment:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eUB9Rq8FcEQ

Tied Up In Geir (Geir Hongro), Friday, 16 October 2009 14:20 (twelve years ago) link

six months pass...

Playing North America next month! Or at least NYC, Toronto, Chicago and LA.

Ned Raggett, Wednesday, 28 April 2010 18:07 (twelve years ago) link

Sondre Lerche opening in NYC.

Ned Raggett, Wednesday, 28 April 2010 18:08 (twelve years ago) link

Texas, guys... Texas!

I just wish he hadn't adopted the "ilxor" moniker (ilxor), Wednesday, 28 April 2010 18:11 (twelve years ago) link

*hinthinthinthinthint*

I just wish he hadn't adopted the "ilxor" moniker (ilxor), Wednesday, 28 April 2010 18:11 (twelve years ago) link

"And You Tell Me" is one of my all time favorites of ever.
Hits that perfect twee pop nerve that I'm such a sucker for

rentboy, Wednesday, 28 April 2010 21:23 (twelve years ago) link

Lerche is a huge a-ha fan so no wonder. I guess Donkeyboy are too busy setting Germany on fire to be able to warmup for a-ha in the US like they did in the UK.

Tied Up In Geir (Geir Hongro), Wednesday, 28 April 2010 22:50 (twelve years ago) link

four weeks pass...

*drool*

Johnny Fever, Wednesday, 26 May 2010 05:23 (eleven years ago) link

Old news, Ned... these were announced a few weeks ago. ;-)

Brilliant albums, nonetheless.

I just wish he hadn't adopted the "ilxor" moniker (ilxor), Wednesday, 26 May 2010 13:08 (eleven years ago) link

two years pass...

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=urFtSadL42o

I think this is my first exposure to solo Morten material? It's not terribly different from latter day a-ha, actually. How does he hold on to that voice?

Johnny Fever, Sunday, 11 November 2012 06:46 (nine years ago) link

There are not enough pics of Morten Harket itt.

The Most Typical and Popular Girl Rider (Crabbits), Sunday, 11 November 2012 15:10 (nine years ago) link

two months pass...

"Stay On These Roads" is lovely!

the little prince of inane false binary hype (Alfred, Lord Sotosyn), Friday, 8 February 2013 01:24 (nine years ago) link

It is indeed.

Ned Raggett, Friday, 8 February 2013 01:24 (nine years ago) link

an amazing album too (aside from Touchy lol).

piscesx, Friday, 8 February 2013 01:26 (nine years ago) link

"The Blood That Moves the Body" would have been a way better Bond theme than "The Living Daylights." Those strings!

Ned Raggett, Friday, 8 February 2013 01:29 (nine years ago) link

I must buy it.

the little prince of inane false binary hype (Alfred, Lord Sotosyn), Friday, 8 February 2013 01:29 (nine years ago) link

especially Bond-y here

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3jiEgyZeN-4

piscesx, Friday, 8 February 2013 01:33 (nine years ago) link

two years pass...

Currently blasting the first two albums, particularly Scoundrel Days. Superb album.

You’re being too simplistic and you’re insulting my poor heart (Turrican), Wednesday, 25 March 2015 19:52 (seven years ago) link

Indeed.

Ned Raggett, Wednesday, 25 March 2015 21:22 (seven years ago) link

Scoundrel Days is the best

DJP, Wednesday, 25 March 2015 21:23 (seven years ago) link

This is cool, but it's also one of the fastest reunions post-farewell that I can remember.

Johnny Fever, Wednesday, 25 March 2015 21:26 (seven years ago) link

Tell that to the Damned! (Or Fall Out Boy or...)

Ned Raggett, Wednesday, 25 March 2015 21:33 (seven years ago) link

From what I can gather, the plan is to do this album and tour and that's pretty much it, but you never know... the first time they broke up, it only lasted about 4 years before they got back together again, this time it's been 5...

You’re being too simplistic and you’re insulting my poor heart (Turrican), Wednesday, 25 March 2015 21:51 (seven years ago) link

It seems that anyone who is familiar with Scoundrel Days rates it quite highly, but I can't help but feel that the album is incredibly underrated in the big scheme of things. For me it's definitely up there with the best records of the '80s.

You’re being too simplistic and you’re insulting my poor heart (Turrican), Wednesday, 25 March 2015 21:53 (seven years ago) link

In the US, for the most part, they ceased to exist the last time "The Sun Always Shines on TV" was aired on MTV. People don't even remember they did a Bond theme, because people never think about the Timothy Dalton movies.

I imagine they have a slightly higher profile in Europe.

Johnny Fever, Wednesday, 25 March 2015 22:18 (seven years ago) link

I don't know about a-ha's chart performance elsewhere in Europe, but Hunting High and Low, Scoundrel Days and Stay On These Roads all made it to #2 on the UK album chart. East Of The Sun, West Of The Moon made it to #12, which is a bit of a drop.

As far as I'm aware, all of their singles up until and including 'Stay On These Roads' went Top 10 here except for 'Manhattan Skyline', which made it to #13.

However, even though they had a great deal of success here in the '80s, 'Take On Me' and 'The Sun Always Shines On TV' seem to be the ones that most people are familiar with, with possibly 'Hunting High & Low' and 'The Living Daylights' after that. It often feels like a lot of their '80s work, for all its success, has been forgotten about in comparison to other bands/tracks of the time, which is a huge shame.

You’re being too simplistic and you’re insulting my poor heart (Turrican), Wednesday, 25 March 2015 22:40 (seven years ago) link

three months pass...

Oh man, I am all about this.

http://theseconddisc.com/2015/07/17/take-on-me-a-has-hunting-high-and-low-goes-super-deluxe-with-new-box-set/

CD 1: The Original Album (Warner Bros. 25300, 1985)

1. Take on Me
2. Train of Thought
3. Hunting High and Low
4. The Blue Sky
5. Living a Boy’s Adventure Tale
6. The Sun Always Shines on T.V.
7. And You Tell Me
8. Love is Reason
9. I Dream Myself Alive
10. Here I Stand and Face the Rain

CD 2: The Demos 1982-1984

1. Lesson One (Autumn 1982 “Take on Me” Demo)
2. Presenting Lily Mars (Naersnes Demo)
3. Na Blaser Det Pa Jorden (Naersnes Demo)
4. The Sphinx (Naersnes Demo)
5. Living a Boy’s Adventure Tale (Naersnes Demo)
6. Dot the I
7. The Love Goodbye
8. Nothing to It
9. Go to Sleep
10. Train of Thought (Demo)
11. Monday Mourning
12. All the Planes That Come In on the Quiet
13. The Blue Sky (Demo)
14. You Have Grown Thoughtful Again
15. What’s That You’re Doing to Yourself in the Pouring Rain
16. Take on Me (Demo)
17. I Dream Myself Alive (Demo)
18. Hunting High and Low (Demo)
19. And You Tell Me (Demo)
20. Here I Stand and Face the Rain (Demo)
21. Love is Reason (Demo)
22. The Blue Sky (Second Demo)
23. Never, Never
24. The Sun Always Shines on T.V. (Demo)
25. Presenting Lily Mars (Rendezvous Demo)

CD 3 – Singles, Extended Versions and B-Sides

1. Take on Me (Original 7-Inch Version, 1984)
2. Take on Me (12-Inch Mix, 1984)
3. Stop! And Make Your Mind Up
4. Take on Me (12-Inch Version, 1985)
5. Take on Me (Instrumental Mix)
6. The Sun Always Shines on T.V. (7-Inch Mix)
7. The Sun Always Shines on T.V. (Extended Version)
8. Driftwood
9. The Sun Always Shines on T.V. (Extended Version No. 2)
10. The Sun Always Shines on T.V. (Instrumental)
11. Train of Thought (7-Inch Mix)
12. Train of Thought (U.S. Remix)
13. Train of Thought (Dub Version)
14. Hunting High and Low (7-Inch Remix)
15. Hunting High and Low (Extended Remix)

CD 4: The Alternate Mixes (previously unreleased)

1. Take on Me (Video Version)
2. Train of Thought (Early Mix)
3. Hunting High and Low (Early Mix)
4. The Blue Sky (Alternate Long Mix)
5. Living a Boy’s Adventure Tale (Early Mix)
6. The Sun Always Shines on T.V. (Alternate Early Mix)
7. And You Tell Me (Early Mix)
8. Love is Reason (Early Mix)
9. Dream Myself Alive (Early “N.Y.C.” Mix)
10. Here I Stand and Face the Rain (Early Mix)

DVD: The Videos

1. Take on Me (1985 Version) – directed by Steve Barron
2. The Sun Always Shines on T.V. – directed by Steve Barron
3. Train of Thought – directed by Candace Reckinger and Michael Patterson
4. Hunting High and Low – directed by Steve Barron
5. Take on Me (1984 Version) – directed by Stevie Price
6. Take on Me (1985 Alternate Cut) – directed by Steve Barron

Ned Raggett, Friday, 17 July 2015 16:43 (six years ago) link

Take on Me (1985 Alternate Cut) – directed by Steve Barron

Having watched the commonly available version about, oh, a zillion times, I think an alternate cut might fuck up my whole world.

Johnny Fever, Friday, 17 July 2015 17:12 (six years ago) link

Here's hoping they do a similar thing with Scoundrel Days!

four years pass...

Morten Harket is 60 today.

ban golf (jed_), Sunday, 15 September 2019 17:28 (two years ago) link

one year passes...

"I Dream Myself Alive" by A-ha, performed by a student accordion trio of the Democratic People's Republic of Korea in Pyongyang 💙 pic.twitter.com/etiKiSHvEa

— Comrade Natalie 🇰🇵 (@NatalieRevolts) September 17, 2020

― xyzzzz__, donderdag 17 september 2020 21:48 bookmarkflaglink

would have never dreamt it possible I would be rinsing an a-ha song to start my day when there's a new Wizkid single waiting for me, but here we are. I only knew them from their 80s singles, many of which I loved, but never went further than that. who knew there was an Italo track sitting on their first album!

(reposted from the North Korea thread, minus any of the tankie intent that may have been involved in this)

No mean feat. DaBaby (breastcrawl), Friday, 18 September 2020 06:49 (one year ago) link

Propaganda is...good again!

xyzzzz__, Friday, 18 September 2020 11:14 (one year ago) link

never look back (back, back)!

No mean feat. DaBaby (breastcrawl), Friday, 18 September 2020 11:35 (one year ago) link

one month passes...

Was in on ILX that someone noted "Take On Me" and "Maria" from "West Side Story" feature the same unusual key change? Does anyone know what I'm talking about?

Josh in Chicago, Friday, 30 October 2020 19:03 (one year ago) link

six months pass...

Goddamn YES PLEASE

https://tribecafilm.com/films/a-ha-the-movie-2021

Ned Raggett, Friday, 21 May 2021 14:27 (one year ago) link

eleven months pass...

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cOhiDxuOEuI

aegis philbin (crüt), Thursday, 12 May 2022 21:36 (one week ago) link

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rc6MumuychA

aegis philbin (crüt), Thursday, 12 May 2022 21:39 (one week ago) link

the first album is great then they went downhill quick!

xzanfar, Thursday, 12 May 2022 21:52 (one week ago) link

Nah.

Malevolent Arugula (Alfred, Lord Sotosyn), Thursday, 12 May 2022 22:00 (one week ago) link


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