Release Date: Jul 6, 2010
Record label: Capitol
Genre(s): Electronic, Pop/Rock
The squiggly synths of the massively catchy “All the Lovers,” the sighing background vocals and spiraling harpsichord-esque synths on the ominous "Closer," and the heavenly extended breakdown on “Looking for an Angel” are the kind of hooks that reward repeated listens. While Kylie is fortunate that so many excellent writers and producers are willing to work with her, they are lucky to be working with Kylie too; she can put over a shimmering and funky track like “Can’t Beat the Feeling” with ease, stomp through a dancefloor-filling jam like “Put Your Hands Up” with power, or cruise through a breezy summertime jam like “Better Than Today” with all kinds of laid-back charm. Sure, she’ll never be mistaken for an octave-stretching diva or a vocal powerhouse, but her slightly nasal, girl-next-door vocals serve her needs perfectly.
“It’s the truth, it’s a fact / I was gone and now I’m back,” sings Kylie Minogue on the title track of her latest release, Aphrodite. The hook asks, “Can you feel me on your stereo?” Yes. Yes we can, Kylie, and damn, it feels good. Aphrodite is filled with the frilly, fabulous dance-floor refrains for which Kylie is famous.
"Dance/ It's all I wanna do." These are the first words declared in "All The Lovers," the opening track to Kylie Minogue's Aphrodite. And that's the thesis in a nutshell of her 11th album, which is being touted as a celebration of the pop singer's "dance-floor roots." The theme holds true in that the 12 tracks are pulse-heavy and anthemic, but not in the literal sense of being retrospective of the many dance styles she has covered in her 23-year music career. However, Aphrodite's most memorable quality is its affirmation of Minogue's reputation as a star for the masses.Aphrodite is everything you expect it to be: inspiring, motivating and celebratory.
It's a shame Kylie bothers with albums – a couple of cracking singles a year would suffice, and eliminate the need for the likes of Stuart Price, Calvin Harris and, on one track, Keane's Tim Rice-Oxley to come up with enough plush padding to fill an entire album. Despite sharp production, Aphrodite is only as good as Kylie herself. And because her voice is limited to squeaks, exhalations and woe-begone sighs, it's hard to stay interested unless you happen to be on a dancefloor at 4am, which is probably the only sensible place to hear it.
The varied, some might say scattershot, production style of Kylie Minogue's 2007 album X was lamented in these very pages, but like its predecessor, the underrated Body Language, the album's strength was the Aussie pop star's willingness to toy with her sound. Without risks, there can be no rewards, and for every awkwardly forced attempt to mine stateside trends, like “Nu-Di-Ty,” there was a more successful genre experiment, like “Speakerphone.” Minogue's Aphrodite, however, is the sound of an artist playing it safe. It's more stylistically coherent than the abovementioned albums, but it yields far fewer surprises.
The diminutive Australian diva is still delivering disco thunder from Down Under. ”Dance,” she assures us at Aphrodite‘s outset, ”it’s all I wanna do.” Given the disc’s sleek electro-pop grooves — honed in part by Madonna ?collaborator Stuart Price — her fans are sure to second that (loco)motion. Her only misstep: the snoozy ballad ”Everything Is Beautiful.” A? Download These:Thumping opener All the Lovers at amazon.comThe glammed-up Better Than Today at amazon.com See all of this week’s reviews .
Pure Kylie magic, Aphrodite is an astonishing return to form. Ian Wade 2010. Kylie Minogue. You may have heard of her. You probably have a favourite era or phase: perhaps when she was Indie Kylie and hanging with Nick Cave and the Manics; or Dance Kylie, when she minxed up in the mid-90s. Maybe you ….
ALEJANDRO ESCOVEDO“Street Songs of Love”(Fantasy) Alejandro Escovedo’s “Street Songs of Love” lives up to the direct monosyllables of its title, then transcends them. It’s a set of 12 midtempo, clear-cut, guitar-driven songs and a closing instrumental, usually with just three or four ….