Although the story of US Atlantic CD issuing ends with Super Trouper, its Canadian offshoot issued two extremely rare Abba titles in the late 1980s: The Visitors and The Singles: The First Ten Years.
These titles, which were released at unknown dates in the late 1980s, are incredibly rare and were probably pressed in very limited numbers. Until recently, no pictures were available of either title.
Besides its rarity, the Canadian version of The Singles is notable for a couple of other reasons. Firstly, it appears to be the first-ever Abba CD release in the world to have a full colour booklet. Secondly, it contains multiple tracklistings, all of which are physically impossible to achieve on CDs.
For a start, the back cover numbers the tracks on disc two from 14 to 23 – when they should run from 1 to 10. This error is repeated on disc two itself.
The Singles booklet with erroneous tracklisting for disc 2
The CD: try finding a player that will start at track 14
Meanwhile, the booklet is a straight reprint of the tracklisting from the original double LP set: separating the tracks into four sides of between seven and five tracks. Most confusing.
Trying to find a two-sided CD may also prove difficult despite the booklet’s claims
In audio terms, The Visitors sounds similar to the original 1982 European CD release of the album while it remains unclear whether The Singles: The First Ten Years is an improvement on its European counterpart.
Both Canadian releases are practically impossible to value as they rarely come up for sale. They are, however, much sought after by collectors who wish to complete their collection of early Atlantic Abba CDs.
First issued: 1987. Reissue: None. Deleted: 1988.