Wow wow wow, Kylie’s 11th studio album kissed shelves across the UK today, but if you were expecting to be wowed by the new sound then disappointment awaits you. With the worst front cover in three albums, Kylie beckons her hands up attempting the command of a Greek goddess but with the conviction of a Saturday, the final result looking more like an unused snap from a Monsoon catalogue.
Whereas 2007’s album X offered enough pop spunk to take charge of a party playlist, Aphrodite is more of a discharge album, one to play off the portable stereo as you potter about the garden collecting empty Pimms beakers.
As always, there is a staff of writers, producers and others who push random buttons in poolside recording studios to ensure a watertight production. This time the K team includes Jim Eliot, Andy Chatterley, Dave Emery, Calvin Harris, Nerina ‘Everybody’s Gone To War’ Pallot and of course Stuart ‘Name Your’ Price.
Considering aspects of X were quite frankly visionary, with tracks like 'Heartbeat Rock' and 'The One' never truly released as singles despite their audio splendour, it is saddening to listen to Aphrodite. This is watered-down Kylie, treading-water Kylie, can’t get you out of bed Kylie. And like trying to remember a dream upon waking, Aphrodite has potential but digs up too many memories and soft splashes of other artists for comfort. There are notes of Madonna, Scissor Sisters, Moby, No Doubt, Diana Ross, Dolly Parton and Jamiroquai, so that the inconvenienced listener is forever trying to place their finger instead of tapping it.
Kitty Empire asked the timely question “will it Gaga?” in her Guardian review. Of course Kylie doesn’t have to Gaga. Everything she does looks and sounds effortless, she is the polar opposite to the machinations of Gaga’s abrasive pop coup. In G-A-Y crowds may stop dancing to watch 'Telephone' but Kylie will always be their first love.
Summery and mellow, Kylie gives us twelve soft dance tracks that play it very safe, we’re talking three condoms and a coil safe. With its ‘On A Night Like This’ auto-retro sound, some bloggers have called Aphrodite a reversion to Light Years, but really it’s more Kylie Lite: the new low-cal Kylie that you feel a bit healthier for eating but wasn’t really what you wanted.
Tracks to download: Aphrodite, Better Than Today, Too Much,
Read Kitty Empire’s review here