Being Kylie. She makes it look all so effortless, having been on pop duty for 27 years and becoming a co-opted national treasure and that. She puts in the hours being fabulous and has knocked up a fine arsenal of magic tunes and cheeky, sexy photo shoots, acknowledging the needs of long-time admirers both straight and gay. Basically, she knows what she’s doing, and she does it very well.
But what exactly does one require from a Kylie album in 2014? She was wise enough to realise that all that dallying with the indie set in the 1990s was doing her few favours – bar a couple of cracking tunes – and then got back into the nice arse realm of uplifting pop at the turn of the century. She's suffered tragedies, illness and could even have the plagues of Egypt in her handbag – but you'd be none the wiser listening through her catalogue. She’s a trouper, and the show always goes on.
On this, her 12th studio album, it's back to jollier dancefloor business as usual after 2012’s ‘The Abbey Road Sessions’ caper, with 11 precision-tooled tracks. She’s aided and abetted by Sia on executive producer duties, along with Pharrell (writing and producing the cute ‘I Was Gonna Cancel’) and Ariel Rechtshaid (credits on tracks by Haim, Usher, Justin Bieber) on ‘If Only’. Elsewhere, future superstar MNEK co-produces the rather ace ripple of ‘Feels So Good’.
From the cheery and exuberant single ‘Into The Blue’ onwards, and the ménage à trois of ‘Sexy Love’, ‘Sexercize’ (not-quite-safe-for-work video below) and ‘Les Sex’, to the Enrique Iglesias-starring vocoder loveliness of ‘Beautiful’, ‘Kiss Me Once’ is a triumph. It may not be quite up there with fan favourites ‘Fever’ and ‘Light Years’, but proves a lot more memorable than ‘Body Language’ or her previous studio set, 2010’s ‘Aphrodite’, were.
Words: Ian Wade
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Listen to ‘Kiss Me Once’ in full via Deezer…