Kylie Minogue: DISCO album review


Among the many perversities of 2020, there are how many discos there has been in the past year without discos. From Róisín Murphy to Jessie Ware to Dua Lipa and Lady Gaga, the musicians collectively yearned for the inaccessible dance floor. Most of them are quite good, and none of them need to be advertised, with attention in ALL CAPS, like DISCO. Kylie Minogue’s idea “in disco” is more than a little redundant: she has done it for several decades, including several modern classics. She recorded some great songs called “Disco Down” and “Your Disco Needs You”. Kylie claimed in a recent interview that she never envisioned the album as “a concept” —dubious, since her next words were about how she envisioned the track as DISCO right from the start. But she built a home studio, immersed herself in deep cuts, honed her production skills, and designed for the first time, all to keep the album from becoming “a tribute record.”Whatever album she made, the album she recorded is just that: an ultra-fine fabrication that sounds like she had just learned of the existence of disco in her forties. While making the album, she redirected her producers to Earth, Wind & Fire YouTubes whenever the record started sounding like “electro-pop” – that is, like her. The lyrics drop names like Wikipedia: Studio 54, “I Will Survive”, The Electric Slide. Kylie works against her voice, trying to contort her studio voice into a queen of dance diva or multitrack in a gospel chorus. Yes d’or sounded like Kylie LARPing’s country music, DISCO often looks like Kylie LARPing’s dance – which shouldn’t happen. No one expresses the record’s essential lack of freshness better than Kylie herself: “Gramps is on the dance floor. It makes me imagine David Brent breaking his father’s movements.

Uncool is not bad, and if anything, DISCO could take more: evoking the actual disco in all its thrill and despair, rather than the version we remember -40 years later, full of kitschy disco balls and clip art. The album, with a few exceptions, has two modes: too tasteful cruise ship programming and port rehashs. Kylie loads the weaker material – perhaps passable in a set, but fatal in an album, where there’s no club to leave. “Magic” has a bubbly, bubbly chorus, the curvy melody of “Miss a Thing” has a little “Confide in Me”, and “Real Groove” pulls Kylie’s voice into the rubber and makes her ricochet, but none of the tracks. go anywhere, and waste their energy at less than half. “Monday Blues” doesn’t bring as much energy as pulling it back, coating its glitter with flop sweat. A remake of “Celebration” which is blatant at the prosecution level, it is so studied that it forgets to celebrate.

Everything is not so doomed by comparison. “Last Chance” is also an obvious homage, this time to Donna Summer’s “Last Dance,” but the storyline comes with its own urgency, and while Kylie isn’t quite transcendent, she does the job well. The album’s must-have song, “Where Does the DJ Go?” It’s ludicrous (where does the DJ go after the last call? Home, usually), but it’s kind of genuine ludicrous, akin to the urgent, emotionally frenzied, absolutely real fits of the rain of men or women. the explosion of a building with boogie. The overclocked “Will You” arrangement helps; it’s brittle and a little too fast, which feels like stretching the night beyond its limits. On “Supernova,” Kylie’s voice has more bite and life than all of the above tracks put together, even before the ecstatic soprano dashes towards the end. (This is one of the few places on the album where she works with her voice, not against it.) The metallic vocal effects of the robot-chassis, the intergalactic metaphor collision, and the desperate, high-end desire evoke Memorably, ’70s space disco novelties like “I lost my heart to a Starship Trooper.”

The next track, “Say Something”, is the loudest and also the least disco. The track loses its sequencer a third of its entry, and when it comes back, it remains silent. There is no real chorus and almost no structure at all. What remains is a lush amount of space for Kylie to spiral upwards, supported by rocket exhaust sighs, airy choirs, and un-ironic statements: “Love is love,” “Can we all be like one again?” Finishing the trail would have brought Kylie and longtime co-writer Biff Stannard to tears; they knew they were on to something. Maybe they were caught in the moment. Maybe the lyrics are a little different in Spring 2020 and Fall 2019; Kylie said the same. Maybe they heard the sparkling moment Kylie stopped being DISCO and went back to being Kylie.

Acheter: Rough Trade

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