After establishing themselves as a source of sugary pop delights like "Waterloo" and "Dancing Queen," ABBA took their first step toward a more adult contemporary sound with "Knowing Me, Knowing You." The lyrics to this dramatic power ballad, which use an empty house filled with memories as a metaphor for a love affair doomed to failure, aren't terribly original in their concept but they are written in an artful and adult manner different from the group's previous lighthearted hits. The adult impression is further enhanced by the song's melody, which utilizes a lot of minor-key shadings to bring the sorrow and finality of the lyric to life. However, it is similar to the group's earlier hits in that its structure contrasts quiet verses that gradually build in intensity to a dramatic chorus that releases the tension they build in an operatic fashion. ABBA's recording of the song wisely played up this emotional intensity while balancing it with plenty of ear-friendly hooks like the multi-part harmonies on the choruses and the emotional guitar riff that follows each chorus. The combination of from-the-heart songwriting and production savvy resulted in another major international hit. This success makes "Knowing Me, Knowing You" a crucial song in ABBA's development because its success gave Bjorn Ulvaeus and Benny Anderson the chance to pursue a more serious take on romance in their music and set a precedent that would lead to further stunning ballads like "The Name of the Game" and "The Winner Takes It All."
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