Saturday, June 22, 2024

Kylie Minogue releases new album, “Disco”

The Aussie princess of pop has some soothing tunes for the soul in the absence of the dance floor.

Given the current global circumstances, I worried that Kylie Minogue had mistimed her latest studio album DISCO.

Would it be out of step with the emotional attrition and political chaos caused globally by Boris Johnson and Donald Trump, and an out-of-control pandemic?

The last place I want to be right now is on a crowded dance floor packed with sweaty bodies, no matter how gorgeous. So how relevant was this album going to be? Quite a bit, it turns out.

Perhaps if the Democrats had lost the election I wouldn’t be as enthusiastic about Kylie’s return to what she does best: Dance music. But now I feel like dancing!

DISCO is the Antipodean pop icon’s fifteenth studio album, and the first new release since her chart-topping album Golden, from 2018.

I liked that tongue-in-cheek foray into country music and I equally approve of her return to the sound that made her famous: dance-pop. But DISCO is almost as if she took her wonderful 2001 single, “Your Disco Needs You,” and blew it up.

There is only one Kylie!

The lead track “Say Something,” is a fizzy, synth-heavy pleasure which does reference the love, longing and separation of these virus-plagued times.

My other favorite tracks include “Magic,” which gives a little nod to that other great Aussie pop icon Olivia Newton-John; then there is the glamorous Euro Disco of “Miss a Thing;” and the irresistible, toe-tapping joy of “I Love It.”

Props to Kylie for knocking the vocals out of the park on several songs but notably in the fun “Where Does the DJ Go?”

It’s also worth noting that the album was recorded during lockdown with each musician and engineer working remotely and in isolation. Cool side note: Kylie gets a vocal engineering credit on all but two of the sixteen tracks on the record.

Kylie has never been as huge in the US as she is in Australia, Britain and Europe. A friend of mine calls her Madonna-lite. And, I’ll be honest: Even when I lived in Australia, Kylie was a little too light for me — a nakedly commercial guilty pleasure.

Kylie has gone back to the glitter and fizz of dance-pop and we love her for it! | Photo: BMG

But life is hard and Kylie is not. The proud LGBT ally and breast cancer survivor is now a firm fixture on my playlist and if you want a pick-me-up — if even for the Peloton — give Kylie a whirl.

I also like that DISCO proudly wears its age on its sleeve: Light 1970s and 1980s disco fare with a sprinkling of club-mix sounds are what a Gen Xer like Kylie associates with euphoria and joy. I know I do!

Like a night out dancing until the sun comes up, this album is what it is. Bring your sunnies, as we say Down Under. This record is as bright as a mirror-ball.

So what you waiting for? Get up on the floor!

Listen to DISCO here.

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Merryn Johns

Merryn Johns is the Editor-in-Chief of Queer Forty. She is an award-winning journalist, as well as a broadcaster and public speaker. Originally from Sydney, Australia where she began her career in journalism in the 1990s, she is based in New York City where she became the editor-in-chief of Curve Magazine and wrote for a variety of publications including Vanity Fair, Vogue, Slate, and more. Follow on Twitter at @Merryn1

Merryn Johns has 141 posts and counting. See all posts by Merryn Johns

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