Kylie Minogue has had a very long and impressive career. She has reinvented herself multiple times, topped the charts more than you can imagine and continues to deliver emotive and empowering storylines. Her fourteenth studio album “Golden” is her most vulnerable and experimental record yet. She pays homage to her golden years as she approaches her 50th birthday and reflects on love, heartbreak and her insecurities. Lead singles “Dancing” and “Stop Me From Falling” are your classic euphoric tracks that introduce her new country-tinged pop sound. While these songs are quite catchy I can’t help but get a dated Avicii sound that’s a little predictable and over used. Every female pop artist seems to be going down the country path with Lady Gaga, P!nk and Bebe Rexha taking lead and its even crossed into the male category with Justin Timberlake jumping on the bandwagon. So while Kylie feels like she’s being original she’s actually just following a predictable trend. She does hold onto her pop roots throughout the record and delivers you big polished hooks and hand claps for songs like “A Lifetime To Repair”, “One Last Kiss” and title track “Golden”. With the combination of these two genres their delivery comes across a little gimmicky and tacky. It’s as if she’s trying to hard to be different with the country influences when really these songs just needed a pure pop production to feel genuine. “Shelby ’68”, “Raining Glitter”, “Lost Without You” and “Rollin” deliver some of the albums strongest moments that will have you spinning around like an Aphrodite and ecstatic that you cant get them out of your head (puns intended). And then on “Music’s Too Sad Without You” she strips it down for a country-pop ballad that sounds more like Lana Del Ray than Dolly Parton with her dreamy vocal delivery and I am LIVING for it. The emotional and honest track is the albums most vulnerable moment and will have your heart breaking. “Now the music’s too sad without you. Silence is all I can listen to now. I can’t sing along to the songs like I used to. The music’s too sad when you’re not around”. The guitar ballad “Radio On” also strips it back for a reflective moment of pure heartbreak that is an instant favourite whilst “Sincerely Yours” is one of the rare full pop moments on this collection. I do think she needed to have more of a balance between the country sound as well as her retro pop-disco because this new country influenced sound isn’t going to be for everyone. And in comparison to all of her other material it doesn’t make a lot of sense unlike “X” which was ahead of its time with its experimental EDM production. But it does have its moments of classic Kylie along with some emotional favourites that showcase some of her most honest and impressive songwriting yet.
You can purchase a copy of Kylie’s new album “Golden” from Sanity; https://www.sanity.com.au/products/2364629/Golden